The Right Protective Gear Can Save The Teeth, Face, Even A Life
April 25, 2013
by Dr. Pat Ricalde, MD, DDS, FACS of The Florida Craniofacial Institute
Baseball is often called a “Game of Statistics.”
In light of National Facial Protection Month, Dr. Pat Ricalde of The Florida Craniofacial Institute wants to remind parents to make sure children stay safe while playing sports with the proper use of protective gear.
Whether starting at 2nd base, hitting or during pitching practice, check out the attached infographic for helpful hints to keep your child’s stats from being a “swing and miss.”
• In baseball alone, it is estimated that batting helmets and face guards may prevent or reduce the severity of nearly 4,000 facial injuries each year.
• A well fitted helmet should sit on top of the head in a level position covering the forehead.
• Chinstraps should fit around the ear and under the chin comfortably.
• Helmets should not rock back and forth or side-to-side.
• The Consumer Product & Safety Commission estimates the highest number of injuries treated annually for youth under age 15 were associated with the face, mouth or ears.
• Just under half of baseball’s 85,000 injuries were associated with the face, mouth or ears.
• 33% of parents say their child has sustained an injury during an organized sport according to the American Association of Orthodontists.
• An effective mouth guard holds teeth in place, resists tearing and allows for normal speech and breathing. It should cover the upper and lower teeth as well as gums.
• Just by wearing a properly fitted mouth guard, 200,000 oral injuries are prevented each year.
• Sports like basketball, baseball, gymnastics, soccer, football, rollerblading, skateboarding, hockey and volleyball all pose risks to the mouth and teeth.
• Usually football and hockey are considered the most dangerous to the teeth, but nearly half of sports-related mouth injuries occur in basketball and baseball.
• Wearing protective eyewear or face shields and being alert, even as a spectator, are also key.
For more information:
Pat Ricalde, MD, DDS, FACS
4200 N. Armenia Avenue, Suite 3, Tampa FL 33607
Office: 813-870-6000 | Fax: 813-870-6015
To set up an interview with Dr. Pat Ricalde for a medical perspective on face, mouth and teeth injuries and the importance of properly fitted sports equipment, contact Shelley Acosta at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-557-8295.