If you play a lot of rugby, you need to take steps to protect your teeth. Wondering what techniques or products can help? Here are some tips to keep in mind:
1. Wear a mouthguard.
Even if a mouth guard is not required in your rugby league, you should wear one anyway, and this is true for players of all ages. Mouthguards can be relatively inexpensive, but they offer a lot of protection. Essentially, a mouthguard is a protective layer of polyurethane or thermoplastic that absorbs impact when something hits your face. That can help to prevent your teeth from getting chipped or knocked out when you've been tackled by another player.
2. Get a custom fitted mouthguard.
If possible, consider talking with your dentist about getting a custom mouthguard fitted for your mouth. This gives you extra protection, as it ensures a snug fit. That helps to prevent the mouthguard rattling around in your mouth or not providing adequate protection.
3. Address accidents immediately.
Don't ignore mouth injuries sustained from rugby or any other sport. Instead, always make an appointment to see a dentist as soon as possible after something has occurred. For example, if a tooth is loose, have it assessed immediately — that allows you to identify a course of action, rather than risking the problem getting worse.
4. Replace missing teeth.
If you lose a tooth, ideally, you should replace it. A gap on your jawline can allow other teeth to start to crowd into that area. In addition, if you sustain a blow to the face, having a missing tooth can cause your mouth to have less overall integrity than it would if all the teeth were in place, and that can exacerbate the chance of injury.
5. Opt for permanent solutions when replacing missing teeth.
When you are replacing a missing tooth, there are several different options. In particular, you can opt for removable partial or full dentures. However, those are not ideal when playing rugby or any other high-contact sport, as they can easily be knocked out of your mouth. Instead, you may want to consider implants. These dental solutions are attached to your jaw bone with a metal bar, and because of that, you don't have to worry about them being dislodged during a rugby game.
For more tips on how to protect your mouth when you play rugby or what to do if your mouth is injured during a rugby game, contact your dentist directly.