Mouth guards weren't invented just to annoy young athletes. Mouth guards are considered the best way to protect teeth. The National Youth Sports Foundation for Safety states that an athlete is 60 times more likely to sustain damage to teeth when not wearing a mouth guard.
So, why don't young athletes wear mouth guards? They say they are not used to them, and they don't want to. What is even more amazing is a report from Delta Dental stating:
Only 70% of caregivers report that their child wears a mouth guard at both football practice and football games.
Only 44% of caregivers say that their child wears a mouth guard for hockey practice and hockey games.
68% of caregivers say their child does not wear a mouthguard for soccer, basketball, baseball, and softball.
Those statistics tell us that a lot of children are not wearing mouthguards and no one is enforcing a policy that they wear one. Those statistics tell us that a lot of children are in danger of permanent teeth damage or loss.
If you have one of those children, here are tips to get them to wear the mouthguard on their own.
1. Be sure the mouthguard is comfortable. Listen to them if they say it isn't comfortable and shop around for one that is comfortable.
2. Be sure the mouthguard is durable and tear resistant.
3. Be sure the mouthguard is easy to clean. If it takes forever to clean, then they might not clean it, and then not wear it.
4. Be sure the mouthguard easily stays in place. No one wants to play a game and be worrying about a mouthguard moving out of place.
5. Be sure the mouthguard does not restrict breathing or speech.
How can you get a mouthguard your child is more likely to wear? Consult a sports medicine shop or your dentist. They can give you the best advice on finding a mouthguard.