Exercise has a wealth of benefits for your body and mind, but it can pose a risk to your teeth. Fast-paced activities offer carry a risk of injury, and it’s always a good idea to protect your mouth whenever possible. Here are 3 top tips to help you protect your teeth when you’re playing sport.
- Wear a mouth guard: mouth guards are specifically designed to protect the teeth from injury. They are plastic shields, which are custom-made. They slide over the teeth, providing a barrier between the teeth and objects, surfaces and other people. If you do get hit or struck in the mouth, there’s a much lower risk of damage if you’re wearing a mouth guard. Mouth guards are also known as gum shields and they are worn by participants in rugby, hockey, lacrosse, martial arts and fighting sports like boxing and wrestling.
- Use a helmet: in some cases, sports carry a risk of injury to the head, as well as the mouth, and it’s wise to wear a helmet to reduce the risk of head, facial and dental injuries. Examples including close fielding in cricket and American football.
- Check the pH of the pool: if you swim on a regular basis, it’s worth checking the pH of the pool. If the pH is too low, and the water is too acidic, there’s a higher risk of swimmer’s calculus, which is caused by acid erosion of the enamel. It’s best to try and keep your mouth closed when you’re swimming and to avoid swallowing the water.