Braces and alternative orthodontic treatments, such as Invisalign Teen, are an investment in your kid’s confidence and oral health. Parents who have a kid with braces know that braces aren’t cheap and having them usually adds a layer to your kid’s social life and athletic activities. Braces need to be regularly rinsed and cleaned, and extra care needs to be taken to keep braces intact and undamaged if you live an active lifestyle.
In this month’s post, we wanted to talk about playing sports with braces and how parents can minimize the chance of injury and damage with a few simple steps toward prevention.
Can You Play Sports if You Have Braces?
Yes, but it’s important understand what’s at risk when you play sports with braces. Orthodontic treatment plans work by consistently applying light force over time. As teeth shift into their optimal places, braces and other treatments like clear aligners (Invisalign®) gradually change where pressure is applied. Orthodontists put a lot of thought into treatment plans for their patients, and mouth injuries or damaged braces upset that treatment plan and its timeline.
Additionally, any parent who has paid for braces has a very clear financial incentive to avoid mouth injuries while their kid enjoys competing in summer sports. One of the best ways to protect your young athlete from injuries and costly disruptions in their orthodontic treatment is a simple device your dentist can make custom, just for them: a mouthguard.
How Mouthguards Protect Braces from Damage
Having braces increases several risks if someone who has them sustains a bad mouth injury. For example, wires from broken braces can injure the tongue, cheeks, and gums. The presence of metal and wires in the mouth also increases the risk of broken and chipped teeth if braces become damaged and wires are forced onto spaces where they’re supposed to be.
Using a custom-made athletic mouthguard adds an extra layer of cushion for serious impacts, and it protects corrective appliances, such as braces, from getting damaged and furthering the risk of injury—not to mention costing a lot of money to repair.
Know What to Do if a Mouth Injury Occurs While Playing Sports
Another big thing parents can do to make sure their child stays safe while playing sports with braces is to know what to do if something goes wrong. We recommend having an emergency plan figured out with your orthodontist. Know what to do so you can get treatment as soon as possible. This go a long way toward keeping your kid’s orthodontic treatment plan on track and making sure you avoid further complications.
Thanks for Reading! Have Fun This Summer!
We hope you enjoyed these suggestions for playing sports with braces safely. Have fun out there this summer and good luck in all your family’s athletic pursuits!
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