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Can You Play Sports While You’re Wearing Braces?

Can someone who wears braces still play sports?

I would venture to say the majority of patients who have braces are involved in some sort of physical activity, whether it’s a teenager in high school sports, a younger child in recreational sports, or an adult who  likes to exercise. Their main concerns are always: “How will the braces interfere with the sports I play? Can I still participate in these activities while wearing braces?

So to quickly answer latter question, “yes,” if you have braces, you can still play sports. They won’t deter you from playing sports, but there are a few precautions you need to take.”

No. 1 precaution to take before playing sports while wearing braces

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Zach Stern via Compfight

 

This applies to more physical sports to include football, baseball, hockey, soccer, lacrosse, field hockey, and 1-on-1 combat type sports like boxing, karate, and judo.

Wear a mouth guard

Usually physical sports require you to wear a mouth guard whether you have braces or not. A mouth guard is great for the following reasons:

*   It protects the teeth:

If you’re playing football and you get pushed, punched, and jabbed in the face throughout the whole game, the mouth guard will protect the position of the teeth so they don’t get knocked around.

*   It prevents you from biting yourself

In a strenuous sport where you don’t concentrate on what’s going on in your mouth, (but more on taking down the opposition, you may be put in a position) you may bite down on your lip and tongue or grind your teeth too hard. That can traumatize tissue and your teeth.

*   It can help prevent concussions

In sports like baseball, football, and any other sport where you can experience blunt force trauma to the head, mouth guards have been shown to stabilize your mouth in such a way that you can minimize concussions.

So, if you wear braces and play any of these sports, wear a mouth guard. It protects your lips and cheeks. If you’re not familiar with braces, they’re made to be smooth and fit comfortably in your mouth, but your cheeks won’t be naturally prone to that feeling. Some parts will feel sharp. So, if you to get hit really hard with the ball or a body part in the cheeks or the mouth while in braces, it could cause some serious damage like cutting your lips. There’s actually been situations where the lips and cheeks get caught on the braces. Then, you’ll need the help of your orthodontist or the emergency room physician to detach your lips from the braces.

Now, I have an interesting story about a patient–a baseball player who wore braces. He was fielding a ball that took a bad bounce and caught him in the mouth. Normally if these situations are severe enough, teeth can be knocked out. And if they’re permanent teeth, they aren’t salvageable. Now, this patient was not wearing a mouth guard, so his lips were beat up pretty badly. But, because his teeth were anchored together in one unit, some of them were jarred loose but, they all stayed in place. If the braces weren’t there, a couple of those teeth probably would have been jarred out of the mouth. He could have risked losing those teeth or needing a surgical or root canal procedure to put those teeth back in the mouth. However, the braces acted as an anchor on his teeth. Although it would have been better for him if he’d worn a mouth guard, the braces proved beneficial. Interestingly, you think about braces as a deterrent to playing sports, but every once in a while they may save a tooth.

If you have more questions about  braces, you can post them on our Facebook page. Or you can find more questions and answers on our Orthodontics FAQ page.

                                  Beecroft Orthodontics, 10472 Georgetown Dr Fredericksburg , VirginiaPhone: 540-898-2200

Can You Play Sports While You’re Wearing Braces?

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