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Safeguarding Smiles: Dealing with Dental Emergencies Caused by Sports Injuries

Sports are a fantastic way to stay active, healthy, and build a sense of camaraderie among athletes. However, with the thrill of competition comes the risk of injuries, some of which can lead to dental emergencies. The American Dental Association projects that one-third of all dental injuries are sports-related. Protecting your teeth during sports is essential, and being prepared for potential dental injuries is equally important. In this blog, we will explore common dental emergencies resulting from sports injuries and provide guidance on how to handle them.

Types of Dental Injuries in Sports

Sports-related dental emergencies can range from mild to severe, with varying degrees of impact on oral health. Some common dental injuries include:

Tooth Fractures

A direct blow to the face or a fall can lead to chipped or fractured teeth. Getting your fractured tooth repaired quickly can save your tooth and reduce further damage or infection.

Avulsed Teeth

Knocked-out teeth, often caused by a forceful impact, require prompt attention for potential re-implantation.

Soft Tissue Injuries

Injuries to the lips, tongue, or cheeks can occur during sports, leading to bleeding and discomfort. It is important to go to the hospital if stitches are needed.

Jaw Possibly Broken

In this scenario, you should apply an ice pack to control swelling. It is best that you go to the hospital emergency room as soon as possible.

Immediate Actions

Quick and appropriate actions can make a significant difference in the outcome of a dental emergency. Here’s what to do in the event of a sports-related dental injury:

Preserve the Tooth

If a tooth is knocked out, handle it by the crown (top part) and avoid touching the root. Rinse it gently with water if dirty, but do not scrub or use soap. Try to reinsert the tooth into its socket, or keep it in milk or a tooth preservation kit until you can see a dentist.

Control Bleeding

Apply gentle pressure to the injured area with a clean cloth or gauze to control bleeding. If bleeding persists, seek professional help.

Manage Pain and Swelling

Over-the-counter pain relievers and cold compresses can help alleviate pain and reduce swelling. Avoid placing aspirin directly on the gums, as it may cause irritation.

Seek Professional Help

Regardless of the severity of the dental injury, it is crucial to seek professional dental care promptly. Dentists are trained to assess the extent of the damage, provide necessary treatments, and offer guidance on long-term care.

Preventive Measures

Prevention is the best approach to avoid sports-related dental emergencies. Athletes can take several precautionary measures:

Wear Protective Gear

Mouth guards, helmets, and face shields are essential protective gear that can significantly reduce the risk of dental injuries.

Regular Dental Check-ups

Schedule regular dental check-ups to address any pre-existing oral health issues and receive guidance on preventive measures.

Stay Informed

Educate yourself and your teammates on the potential risks of sports-related dental injuries and the proper steps to take in case of an emergency.

The Impact of Mouthguards

A study of high school athletes found that 75% of injuries occurred when mouthguards were not worn. This underscores the importance of incorporating mouthguards into sports gear to mitigate the risk of dental injuries. The study also highlighted that 40% of injuries occurred during basketball and baseball. Understanding the specific risks associated with different sports allows athletes and coaches to tailor preventive measures accordingly.

Contact Us

Sports injuries can happen unexpectedly, and dental emergencies are no exception. Being prepared and taking immediate action can make a significant impact on the outcome. By incorporating preventive measures and staying informed, athletes can enjoy their favorite sports while safeguarding their smiles from potential harm. Contact us today at South Meadows Dental & Orthodontics if you are looking for dental care in the Reno, NV, area. Remember, prompt attention to dental injuries is crucial for maintaining optimal oral health and preventing long-term complications.

Orthodontics and Dental Care Provided in One Convenient Location

Cutting edge dentistry incorporates the prevention and restoration of dental disease, while keeping function, beauty, and stability in mind. Our dentists perform a comprehensive evaluation of their patients’ dental health.  They are not only looking to see what problems may need to be addressed, but they are examining how the problems came to be. Often, it is important to address the underlying cause of the dental problems, to better create restorations that will last.  Sometimes, there would be a better outcome for cosmetics or longevity, if the teeth were orthodontically aligned, prior to restoration. Not all teeth need orthodontic treatment and not all orthodontic treatment requires dental restoration.  But when the need arises for both, our office is uniquely positioned to coordinate these elements of care, for our patients’ maximum benefit.

At South Meadows Dental & Orthodontics, we provide both dentistry and orthodontic treatment plans to ensure our patients have one convenient location in Reno, NV to receive dental care. Our office boasts of a friendly staff, a clean, comfortable environment, and a convenient location with easy access to parking.  Dr. Brian Struby, Dr. Jamie Smith, and Dr. Meagan Struby take pride in providing quality dental care, with the depth of knowledge a multi-specialty practice has to offer. 

The Benefits of Orthodontics and Dentistry In One Place

We understand how crucial time is to our patients. A variety of dental services, including restorative, family, cosmetic dentistry, and orthodontics are available at our office. Examples of some complementing conveniences you may not have realized about our Dental/Orthodontic practice are as follows: 

  • We have the ability to remove orthodontic archwires, so our patients can get a thorough cleaning.  
  • We can make retainers for patients who may have just completed restorative work.  
  • We can easily combine dental and orthodontic appointments so a patient can promptly get cosmetic restorations at the completion of orthodontic treatment.  

Without these conveniences, a patient would need to spend time driving around town to multiple offices, to accomplish these goals.  

Another aspect of care is the ability to consult with the dentist and the orthodontist. We have coined the phrase, “Collaboration without Complication.” Ease of communication among our dental professionals creates an environment where we can share thoughts and ideas about a patient’s particular case, to produce better outcomes.  

Services for the Whole Family

We are happy to see you, your children, or any of your family. We look forward to taking excellent care of your dental needs. South Meadows Dental & Orthodontics is eager to provide you and your family with a healthy, functional, stable, beautiful smile in one location! 

Schedule a Consultation

The combined talent at South Meadows Dental & Orthodontics, will help you with all aspects of your treatment plan. Call us now or fill out our online contact form to schedule your personalized appointment today!

Busting Common Oral Health Myths

Are your teeth getting the care and respect they deserve? We’re willing to bet they’re a bit neglected. See if your at-home dental care fits any of these oral health myths.

MYTH: If I see the dentist twice a year, my teeth will be fine.
TRUTH: Two dental checkups a year are enough for many people, but not all. You should see a dentist more often if you:

  • Are expecting a baby
  • Smoke
  • Have a compromised immune system
  • Are susceptible to cavities
  • Have plaque buildup
  • Currently have gum disease

Doctors Brian Struby and Jamie Smith at South Meadows Dental & Orthodontics can help you develop a personalized schedule for regular checkups.

MYTH: Diet soda won’t harm my teeth.
TRUTH: While sugary drinks are bad for your teeth, sugar-free soda isn’t any better. Diet soda is very acidic and can damage the enamel of your teeth. That makes them more prone to cavities and decay.

MYTH: I don’t eat much sugar, so I don’t have to worry about tooth decay.
TRUTH: While sugar can lead to tooth decay, the main culprit is carbohydrates.

When you eat carbs, the acid from the bacteria that occurs naturally in your mouth combines with saliva to create plaque buildup on your teeth.

MYTH: I’m expecting a baby and shouldn’t have dental work done now.
TRUTH: The hormonal changes in your body during pregnancy can increase the risk of cavities, gum disease and infections. Be sure to tell us if you’re pregnant. And keep up with your schedule of regular dental checkups.

MYTH: Smoking will discolor my teeth, but it won’t cause dental problems.
TRUTH: Smokers are at greater risk of oral cancer. Additionally, smoking can cause more cavities and gum disease.

MYTH: My parents both needed dentures when they were in their 50s. So I probably will, too.
TRUTH: It’s true that you may inherit a predisposition to gum disease and tooth decay from your parents. But that doesn’t mean you’ll lose your teeth.

With regular dental care, a healthy diet and excellent oral hygiene, your teeth could last for life.

Ask us about dental sealants, too. While they’re most often used for children, they can also help cavity-prone adults.

MYTH: Whitening will damage my teeth
TRUTH: Done incorrectly or with the wrong product, yes, whitening can damage the enamel of your teeth. For the best and safest results, whitening should be done by a dentist.

At South Meadows Dental & Orthodontics, we use both the Opalescence and Opalescence Boost whitening systems. Ask us how they work and whether you’re a good candidate for whitening. If you’re not, there are other ways we can help you create a beautiful smile.

MYTH: I hate my crooked teeth, but braces are just for kids.
TRUTH: You’re never too old for braces! Straight teeth do more than enhance your smile. They’re easier to keep clean, reducing your risk of cavities, gum disease, and bone loss.

Our orthodontist, Dr. Meagan Struby, is board certified in orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics. She uses both the Damon and Invisalign systems.

Talk with her about your options for finally having correctly aligned teeth.

To learn more about busting oral health myths, contact us. We’re always here to help.

How to Choose the Best Family Dentist

family dentistry reno

When you are on the search for a new dentist, you want to find someone who isn’t just there to clean your teeth. You want someone that will form a connection with you and your family. Dental health is a big part of your overall health, so everyone should find the best dentist for their needs. You will want to find someone who is always on your side and will take care of your needs.

You’ll feel much more comfortable when you know and trust your dentist practice. It will make it easier to drop in for just a cleaning or even for a dental emergency. Here are a few tips to follow when you are trying to find the best fit for your dental needs.

Start Researching Your Options

Since regular offices visits are the key to an amazing smile and healthy gums, consider the smaller details when choosing a dentist. For example:

  • Is the office close to work or home?
  • Are their hours convenient?
  • Is the dentist in your insurance network?
  • Will you need a translator to talk to the dentist?
  • Is he or she a member of the American Dental Association?

Launching Your Search

You have likely noticed the many advertisements for dentists, both online and off. Many still advertise through newspaper ads and through flyers in the mail, while others incorporate social media into their advertising campaigns. You may even find reviews online concerning local dentists, but it is important to remember that every person has different experiences.

You can start looking for your own dentist at these places:

  • Find-A-Dentist- this is a tool offered by the ADA that will allow you to search by name, specialty, and location.
  • A local dental society- They will provide you with local names of nearby offices.
  • Friends, relatives, or coworkers- Ask for personal preferences from all three.

After you have chosen a couple of potential candidates, check their social media pages and their website to find out more about them. If you do not have dental benefits or can’t afford dental services, check out local dental schools or your health department to find affordable care.

Meet the Candidates

You should not be shy or concerned about meeting the dentists you are considering before deciding on one. Write up a list of any questions and concerns you have and bring them with you. You can also bring your dental records so that the dentist has them in hand to check out your history. You will then find out first-hand if the office is up to your standards. For example, is it clean? Do you feel welcome? Is the staff friendly and knowledgeable? These are important factors to consider when making your choice.

  • You should always ask questions while you are meeting potential dentists. For example:
  • Will he or she explain the procedures they are doing before they perform them?
  • Will the office explain how you can prevent future dental health issues?
  • How are emergencies handled after hours?
  • Does the office take your insurance?
  • Are there financial options available if you do not have adequate dental insurance?

Pick Your Dentist

Choose a reliable dentist that will be a huge part of your overall care team. You want to find someone that you can trust with your dental issues and who makes you feel safe and comfortable in their hands.

South Meadows Dental & Orthodontics

At South Meadows Dental & Orthodontics, we encourage our patients to share their past experiences and present concerns, especially anxiety issues. We want to make your experience as pleasant and relaxing as possible. Call us today to discuss your needs and goals, or fill out our online form!