As summer approaches, more kids will be playing sports. When you are getting your child’s sports equipment together, do not forget the importance of a mouth guard. Even the sports that you would not expect to pose a danger to your child’s mouth could be an issue. If it is possible to wear a mouth guard during any sport, it is recommended that your child wear one. Not only do they protect your child’s teeth from being chipped or knocked out, but they can also help minimize the risk of concussion. If your child does have a mouth guard, it is important to know how to care for them as an unsanitary mouth guard poses even more dangers to your child’s mouth.
Keeping it Clean
There are a few very simple ways to ensure that your child’s mouth guard is not a breeding ground for bacteria. These steps will only take a few extra minutes, but can save your child from unnecessary infection, tooth decay and embarrassment.
- Make sure your child’s teeth are freshly brushed before wearing the mouth guard. This eliminates the risk of spreading germs from your child’s mouth into the mouth guard where they will then sit and spread further once it is worn again.
- Clean the mouth guard with soap and water after every use. This is important in order to rid the piece of all of the germs that resided in it while your child played sports.
- Always store the mouth guard in the proper container rather than just throwing it in his sports equipment bag. If you let the mouth guard sit with other sweaty and dirty equipment, the germs from that equipment will be spread to the mouth guard, which will then get transferred to your child’s mouth.
- Make sure the mouth guard is thoroughly dry before placing it in its storage container to prevent the growth of mold and mildew.
The presence of a mouth guard during sports is important to protect your child’s mouth, but if you do not properly care for the mouth guard, it will not do him or her any good. Not only will a dirty mouth guard put your child’s mouth at risk for infection or decay, but it will also cause him embarrassment from the unsightly odor that a dirty mouth guard can create. Take the few extra steps necessary to proper cleaning and you will give your child’s mouth the protection it needs this summer!