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Dealing With Common Oral Injuries in Sports

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On the playing field, an athlete seeks victory. To win, they will work their hardest, run their fastest, and hit with vigor. This vigor is usually a good thing, but sometimes it can lead to oral injury. Because mouth injuries from sports are so commonly treated at Wong Dental, we wanted to review some common injuries to help you be prepared should oral damage occur. Here’s a guide on the most common athletic dental issues, and how to identify them.

— Fractured Root: A hard impact to the face can cause a crack in the inner tooth. The fracture can be on the outside enamel, or on the inside of the tooth, where you cannot see it. Less serious tooth fractures only involve the enamel, while more painful and dangerous ones affect the middle layers such as the pulp and dentin. You may have a cracked tooth if you experience sharp pain when you bite down, discomfort when you drink hot or cold liquids, constant pain, or, find a crack in the tooth. Our skilled dentists can fix fractured roots with dental bonding.

— Chipped tooth: A piece of the tooth can break off when hit, which is easily recognizable. We can easily fix a tooth by using dental bonding or cementing a crown to the top of the tooth.

— Tooth Intrusion: Most people associate mouth injuries with knocked out teeth, but an impact can actually drive the tooth farther into the gum and jaw bone. This is called intrusion and more commonly happens to kids because of their soft jaw. Intrusion can cause the destruction of the inner tooth, shortening of the roots, incorrect tooth fusion, and chronic pain. Fortunately, our dentists can fix tooth intrusion with a few advanced procedures.

An excellent way to prevent any of these injuries is with a mouthguard. The National Youth Sports Safety Association has published that players who do not wear mouthguards are 60 times more likely to take damage to their teeth. We are pleased to offer athletic sports guards for our patients. 

To make an appointment with our office in Covina, California, call 626-709-3332. Drs. Lin Wong, Collin Tsai, and Homan Hansab look forward to helping you with all of your oral health needs!