Posted on December 5, 2022
Did your child recently get braces? While braces are incredibly helpful tools, they take some getting used to. Your child may feel discomfort eating, speaking, and even sleeping after first getting braces. On average, people wear braces for around two years, according to KidsHealth. Eventually, they get more comfortable, but it doesn’t happen overnight.
If your child is an athlete, he or she may be wondering if they can continue to play sports while wearing braces. The good news is yes, they can play sports with braces. However, as most orthodontists will tell you, there are added risks with braces. Below are some tips for young athletes with braces.
The riskiest sports for athletes with braces are sports where there’s possible contact with the mouth. Soccer is a big one because it’s possible for a ball or even another player’s hand or elbow to catch someone in the mouth. The same applies to basketball or other sports where the action is fast and there is no helmet or face protection. While football is dangerous in other respects, the helmet and faceguard usually protect braces from being impacted. Most orthodontists advise athletes to be cautious of facial impacts and collisions while playing.
Nearly all orthodontists recommend that athletes wear an orthodontic mouthguard while they have braces. These mouthguards fit over the braces and protect them from snapping out of place after an impact. While a mouthguard doesn’t eliminate all risks, it does greatly minimize the chances of a wire or brace coming undone and causing damage to the mouth. You can purchase a mouthguard from your orthodontist or with a quick search online.
Even if you take every possible precaution, there’s still a chance that your child could suffer damage to their braces. A snapped wire could cut the inside of their mouth or cause other issues. Contact your orthodontist if a damaging impact does happen. They can advise you on what steps to take and when you should come in for a checkup.
Do you have a young athlete who needs braces? Contact us today to schedule your first consultation.