Sports dentistry is one of the most recent and upcoming field in dentistry. It mainly includes the prevention and management of athletics-related orofacial injuries and associated oral diseases.
The role of the sports dentist is rapidly increasing as sport embraces the need for good oral health to be an integral part of all athletes’ awareness of the potential influence of diet, oral health, regular dental maintenance and correct preventative measures
Anywhere from 13 to 39 percent of dental injuries result from playing sports. Approximately 80 percent of all dental injuries affect one, if not more, of the front teeth. Tongue and cheek injuries are common too. Small chips and cracks in teeth can be repaired. Even a knocked out tooth can be salvaged by seeking immediate dental assistance.
A typical mouth guard covers the top teeth. They're designed to guard against cut lips, broken teeth and other types of damage to the mouth.
While there are many types of mouth guards available to purchase over the counter. It’s is advised that a custom made mouth guard is provided, as this provides maximum protection with minimal discomfort. As the guard is constructed specifically for the patient it will stay intact whilst playing sport and will be comfortable, so the patient is unlikely to remove it whilst playing sport as is often not the case with the over the counter mouthguards.
In the past if sporting injuries occurred and teeth were lost, a denture was often the treatment of choice. In modern dentistry there are many more treatment choices available to replace missing teeth lost through sport.
In recent years there has been an influx of retired sports persons coming to sports dentists to explore treatment options to improve on the initial treatment provisions for the dental trauma that occurred years ago.