Sports Drinks and Mouthguards: Everything Athletes Need to Know

Posted by KEN CARYL DENTISTRY Jul 06,2022

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Sports drinks and mouthguards are two popular terms often used by athletes. Sports drinks are a convenient way for athletes to prevent dehydration and replenish electrolytes. Mouthguards are appliances that help protect teeth from sports-related injuries. Read our blog to learn more about sports drinks and mouth guards and the things to take care of while using them. 

Staying Hydrated During Sports 

When we play sports, our body loses fluids through sweat. Losing fluids and electrolytes through sweat can cause dehydration. Dehydration can cause dry mouth, thirst, weakness, dizziness, muscle pain, headache, and nausea. Not having enough water can also result in heat exhaustion, which can lead to heat stroke. Dehydration can affect our athletic performance and can increase our risk for heat-related illnesses or injuries. Hence, staying hydrated during sports is essential to enable our body to be able to keep up with the demands of physical activity. 

Sports drinks contain electrolytes, like sodium and potassium. These electrolytes help our body absorb water. So, drinking sports drinks and water before, during, and after we play sports can help us stay hydrated.

Why Sports Drinks Are Dangerous To Your Teeth?

Sports drinks can be full of sugar and acid. They are designed to increase stamina during exercise by boosting energy. But, be aware that these drinks can still harm your teeth. If consumed in excess, the acidic nature of sports drinks can erode the enamel of your teeth. In addition, these beverages contain a lot of sugar, which bacteria use to produce acid that can create tiny holes in your teeth, called cavities. Since cavities grow bigger and deeper, they can eventually cause infections and tooth loss. Sports drinks also increase the chance of tooth sensitivity and pain, especially if your teeth are already sensitive.

How To Treat Damage To Your Teeth From Sports Drinks?

If you consume sports drinks, you should brush and floss your teeth as soon as you can after drinking. Brushing will remove the acid and sugar from your teeth. Flossing will remove food particles, which can irritate your gums. Rinsing your mouth with water can also help.

Acidic drinks like sports drinks can wear away your enamel. This can lead to tooth decay. You should try to limit your consumption of sports drinks to no more than once per day. Instead of drinking sports drinks, you can drink water or a seltzer. Also, never skip your regular dental checkups to ensure that even the initial stages of dental issues are detected and treated. 

How Mouthguards Protect Your Teeth?

A mouthguard is a plastic or laminate device worn over your teeth to protect them during sports. Mouthguards can prevent dental injuries, such as broken, cracked, or knocked-out teeth.

Mouthguards work in two ways. First, they cover your teeth. When your teeth are covered by soft material, they are protected from being chipped or knocked out. This can protect your teeth from damage and keep you from needing a restorative dentistry treatment like dental implants or fillings.

Second, the dental appliance creates a physical barrier between your teeth and your lip, cheek, or tongue. This can help you avoid damaging soft tissues, which can help you avoid a range of pain.

How Does A Mouthguard Work? 

A mouthguard is a piece of protective gear that can protect your teeth, lips, tongue, face, and jaw from injuries. It works like a shock absorber, cushioning the force applied to your teeth. Mouthguards can also help distribute the biting forces over a larger area, decreasing the risk of injury to the teeth. 

Mouthguards can also help prevent concussions, which are common among many athletes. The mouthguard absorbs the force of impact during a collision, preventing the brain from moving inside your skull. Mouthguards are not required equipment in many sports. They are, however, highly recommended for athletes who participate in contact sports, like football, hockey, basketball, boxing, and soccer.

Maintain Your Oral Health with Ken Caryl Dentistry 

Athletes should always see a dentist for checkups and professional cleanings. If an injury occurs, contact our office immediately for an emergency appointment. We can diagnose the problem and give you the treatment you need.

Ken Caryl Dentistry offers the best dental services to maintain your healthy smile. For more details, call Dentist in Littleton at (303) 973-5280 or visit The Courtyards at Deer Creek 7631 Shaffer Pkwy Suite B, Littleton, CO 80127. 

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