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Winter sports that need mouthguards

Helmets, gloves, and goggles are synonymous with many winter sports — but what about mouthguards? Do you or your child need to wear a mouthguard for your Arctic athletic activity? Here are winter sports that need mouthguards:

Hockey

Hockey has a stereotype of players missing teeth, and although the NHL doesn’t require players to wear mouthguards, the South Dakota Amateur Hockey Association requires players to wear them. Hard contact and flying pucks are all dangerous to your oral health. Wearing a mouthguard protects the teeth, gums, and tongue.

Skiing and Snowboarding

Flying down the slopes with the risk of running into someone, hitting the hard-packed snow, or crashing into a tree are all risky for your teeth. Wearing a mouthguard while you ski or snowboard can help prevent damage if an accident occurs.

Basketball and Wrestling

These winter sports are sans snow but pose all the risks for a facial injury. Close contact with opponents can result in knocking out a tooth (a flying elbow is a definite possibility). Wear a mouthguard to reduce your risk.

Winter sports that need mouthguards don’t all involve snow or ice. Whether you want to protect your child’s mouth or your own, it’s always best to wear a mouthguard for any sport (competitive or not) that poses a risk for facial injury.

And if something does go wrong, be prepared and know what to do to save a knocked-out tooth.