As the weather warms up, young athletes everywhere are getting ready for summer sports to kick off. This season, Great Expressions Dental Centers (GEDC) is bringing awareness to facial protection and oral cancer this Facial Protection and Oral Cancer Awareness Month by providing you with tips to share with the athletes in your life before they hit the field, so you won’t get hit with a large dental bill.
MYTH: Chewing tobacco is better for you than inhaling tobacco.
FACT: There are at least 28 chemicals in chewing tobacco that have been found to cause cancer, that include types like oral, pancreatic and esophageal.
MYTH: Dental injuries only occur in contact sports, so I don’t need a mouth guard if I’m playing a non-contact sport.
FACT: Sports-related injuries often end up in the emergency room and according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, more than 600,000 of these visits involve damage to the teeth and mouth – in sports including baseball, acrobatics and bicycling.
MYTH: They only way to prevent oral injuries in sports is wearing a mouth guard.
FACT: While wearing a mouth guard is one effective way to prevent oral injuries in sports, there are also face cages, these protect against trauma to the face. Be sure to do research on the best protective gear before your son or daughter steps on the field.
MYTH: Once a tooth gets knocked out, there isn’t much a dentist can do to repair it.
FACT: Should a tooth get knocked out while playing a sport, or doing anything else, it can be repaired if handled correctly. The sooner you can get to your dentist’s office, the better. Knocked-out teeth with the highest chances of being saved are those that are seen by a dentist and returned to their socket within an hour of the injury.
FACT: Injuries in sports are sometimes inevitable. Be sure to do ample research on which sport your son and/or daughter are interested in before they take the field. This will help educate you as a parent on how to best equip them, preventing injuries to their smile, but also any type of injury to their body.
A recent study found that more than 5 million teeth are injured and/or knocked out each year resulting in nearly 500 million dollars spent on replacing teeth. It has also been reported that nearly 12 percent of high school boys admitted to using chewing tobacco. This means spreading awareness of the harms of chewing tobacco and investing in the right facial and mouth protection is essential for your athlete.