Sports Safety & Orthodontic Emergencies

Many people believe that getting braces means they have to quit their favorite sport or activity, but this idea could not be further from the truth! Modern orthodontic treatment options are adaptable to fit your lifestyle, and there are many ways to maintain your active way of living while still straightening your teeth. Dr. Grubaugh believes in making treatment work for you, so you don’t have to sacrifice your sport or your smile!

At Grubaugh Orthodontics, we love to support our patients in their many different activities and endeavors, athletes included! If you’re worried that braces could stop you from trying out for your high school football team or joining a local soccer league, worry no more — Grubaugh Orthodontics has you covered! 

Keep reading below to find out our tips for staying safe on the field — and what to do in case of an orthodontic emergency

Defense is the Best Offense: Wear a Mouthguard!

Whether you’re playing football, volleyball, gymnastics, or cheerleading, wearing a mouthguard is an oral health necessity. Most dentists and orthodontists recommend using a mouthguard during sports even if you don’t have braces, but it is especially important when undergoing orthodontic treatment. 

Not wearing a mouthguard means you risk harming yourself and your braces, which could be painful and expensive. The best way to ensure you can play your favorite sport and straighten your smile is to wear that mouthguard! 

Regular Sports Mouthguard

This mouthguard is designed for general sports use and can easily be found at any sporting goods store. Convenient and affordable, sports mouthguards protect your teeth, lips, and jaw from any blunt force that may occur while engaging in physical activity. 

While they are an excellent option for athletes without braces to consider, these may not be the best choice for athletes undergoing orthodontic treatment. That’s because they are not designed with braces in mind and may not even cover your teeth completely, meaning the risk of injury is still pretty high. 

Over-the-Counter Mouthguard

You can find these mouthguards at your local pharmacy. Because they are moldable, they offer a fit specific to your mouth. They are also an affordable and convenient option.

While they are far more protective than regular sports mouthguards, the over-the-counter option is not designed for use with orthodontics. Because they are meant to prevent individuals from grinding their teeth in their sleep rather than prevent injury, you may still experience a loose fit over your braces. 

Orthodontic Mouthguard

By far the best option for preventing injury and protecting your braces while you participate in athletics, the sole purpose of orthodontic mouthguards is to ensure your braces are safe on the field or in the gym. They are also designed to fit your braces precisely, giving you the best fit possible. Orthodontic mouthguards may be a little more expensive, but they are durable, long-lasting, and practical, meaning you should have no worries about after-school practice.

Remember, having any mouthguard is better than not having one at all – but make sure you consider your options carefully so that you can keep yourself safe no matter the sport you’re playing. 

Sports Safety & Orthodontic Emergencies

Choose the Treatment That Fits Your Lifestyle

Our expert team is here to help you pick the right treatment plan for your lifestyle. If you’re looking forward to playing your favorite sport, let Dr. Grubaugh know! This information is useful when it comes to designing your treatment plan. 

Lucky for you, Grubaugh Orthodontics has a range of different treatment methods that will make your choice easy. 

Damon Braces

As the traditional option, these metal braces are often the first that come to mind when considering orthodontic treatment. They work by tightening the wire attached to a bracket glued to each tooth. With gentle, continuous pressure, your teeth are aligned over 12-36 months, depending on the severity of your case, your mouth’s response to treatment, and your desired outcome. With metal braces, you will need to wear a mouthguard to protect yourself when engaging in physical activity.

Clear Braces

Clear braces work the same way as metal braces. The difference is that clear braces use white ceramic brackets that blend in with the color of your teeth and provide a less noticeable appearance. Because this method is almost identical to metal braces, you’ll need to wear a protective mouthguard with these as well. 


This removable treatment option uses a series of clear trays that adjust your teeth without wires or brackets. Because they are clear, this option allows you to straighten your teeth with an almost invisible look. By wearing these trays for 22 hours per day for 9-15 months, you’ll see results in no time. With this treatment method, you could simply remove the trays for the duration of the physical activity – but don’t forget to put them back in as soon as you are done!

Take Care of Yourself During an Emergency

Accidents happen! Just like with any sport, there is always a risk of injury. Wearing braces can sometimes add to that risk, especially if you aren’t wearing the right mouthguard. The important thing is knowing how to respond to sports and braces-related injuries when they do happen. Dr. Grubaugh has some tips for handling an orthodontic emergency if they do. 

The most crucial step is to stay calm and rest easy, knowing that there are a series of trustworthy steps that you can take to ensure their injuries are taken care of. Common orthodontic injuries seen on the field include fractured teeth, missing teeth, or extruded or intruded teeth. 

It is critical to get immediate care if any of these injuries occur. Be sure to call your orthodontist as soon as possible to set up an appointment to address the orthodontic side of your injury. Depending on the severity of the case, you may want to go to the emergency room. 

Sports Safety & Orthodontic Emergencies

Grubaugh Orthodontics is Here to Cheer You On!

Our team at Grubaugh Orthodontics is proud to serve patients of all ages and circumstances. You deserve the smile of your dreams, and we’ve got the expertise to give it to you. Whether you’re on or off the field, we’re cheering you on! 

If you’re considering braces, schedule your free consultation with Dr. Grubaugh today!