Sealants are a great way to protect against tooth decay and cavities on your back teeth (molars and premolars). These are the teeth that are most vulnerable to cavities and decay because they are used in the chewing process, and are the most difficult to reach and clean. Molars first come in at around 5-7 years of age, with a second set coming in between the ages of 11-14. It is best to have a sealant placed when the molars first come in to ensure they are protected early.
Sealants are a cost-effective means to help prevent cavities in the grooves of back teeth. Sealants are a painless procedure as no numbing or drilling is needed. To place a sealant, an adhesive is first applied to the tooth. The sealant is then placed over the adhesive as a liquid, as if it is painted right onto the biting surfaces of a tooth. The liquid then hardens and creates a barrier between your tooth and any plaque, food particles, and bacteria. Sealants last for quiet a while and can be reapplied if necessary.
Mouth guards are an essential piece of equipment in contact sports. They should be worn by athletes of all ages who participate in sports such as:
- …any sport where contact is a possibility.
Wearing a mouth guard helps prevent against structural damage to your teeth and jaw and also helps prevent injuries such as lacerations to your cheeks, tongue, and lips. Mouth guards have also been shown to help decrease the risk of concussions.
Mouth guards are available in most any sporting goods store, but you should be careful when purchasing a mouth guard. Mouth guards like this do not offer the best level of protection. They are also usually ill-fitting and uncomfortable.
For the highest level of comfort and protection, you should visit your dentist for a custom mouth guard fitting. A custom mouth guard is created specifically for the optimal protection of YOUR mouth. It is created with thin plastic that is hardened to protect your teeth. The thinness of the custom mouth guard allows for easy breathing and also allows for easy communication (especially important for you star quarterbacks calling out the signals).
See your dentist today for a custom mouth guard to protect your teeth and ensure that you maintain the highest level of performance on the field, court, or rink.