School is back in session, and with it come all our kids’ favorite extracurricular activities! Are you worried about letting your child enjoy school sports due to their new braces or retainers? No worries! With a couple easy tips they will be ready for a great season and a great smile.

Here are some of our most frequently asked questions as kids in braces start their sports season:

Can I still play contact sports?

You may be afraid that any sport that includes the possibility of physical contact would jeopardize the safety of your child’s braces. However, a mouth guard is a great way to protect their teeth even during high-contact sports like football or soccer.

Even if they play a sport with limited contact like baseball or volleyball, it’s still a good idea to keep the mouth guard in, just in case. A foul ball or stray elbow can quickly become a danger to orthodontic treatment, so keep safety first.

How can I care for my teeth while I travel?

Now that your child’s teeth are protected with a mouth guard during the game, teach them how to continue their oral healthcare even while they’re on the road. Make sure they have the proper cases to store their retainer and/or mouth guard, preferably in a bright and clearly labeled case to avoid loss or mix-ups.

Kids and teens with braces can be especially susceptible to cavities, especially during busy school and sports seasons. Help your child pack an on-the-go tooth-brushing kit so they can keep their smiles clean, even during away games or overnight tournaments.

What should I do in an emergency?

Even if your child take every precaution to protect themselves during a contact sport, accidents can happen. Most times, damage to orthodontic treatment like a broken bracket or a loose wire is not considered an emergency – in these cases, you can wait till the next business day to schedule a repair or check-in.

However, if there is a break that causes severe pain or an inability for your child to open and close his or her mouth, these can be more serious and you should call your orthodontic provider right away. Finally, in the very rare scenario where a piece of your child’s orthodontic appliance is inhaled or interferes with breathing, call 911 immediately. But rest assured, these situations are extremely rare in youth sports.

At Alizadeh & Schreiner, we look forward to making sure your child is ready for any sport or season, without disrupting their orthodontic treatment. To learn how we can help, schedule your free consultation today!