The popularity of mixed martial arts has skyrocketed over the last few years. The year 2015 generated record revenue for UFC, which is a popular platform for the discipline of mixed martial arts. This incredible year of revenue was fueled by the rise of Irishman Conor McGregor to the pinnacle of the featherweight division. As a result of the increased popularity, a lot of people are starting to practice MMA in gyms dedicated to the sport. Despite the fact that many people enjoy it as a way to keep fit, there is no doubting that practicing MMA comes with a significant risk of dental accidents.
One of the most prominent issues people encounter when sparring is that of cracked teeth. This can easily happen because of the nature of MMA. Sparring on hard surfaces can result in unexpected contact between your tooth and the floor, or with body parts of your partner such as the elbow or foot.
It's tempting to avoid treating a cracked tooth, perhaps because it is a back tooth that nobody can see and it gives you minimal discomfort. This is the wrong way to think. Any high-impact incident that leads to a cracked tooth requires further evaluation. Your preference should be to make an appointment with a qualified endodontist. These specialist dentists have expertise in treating cracked teeth and will know precisely how to manage it.
Leaving your cracked tooth untreated can result in a split tooth, which is an altogether more difficult problem to treat. This is when a cracked tooth splits completely in half. It is important to realize that there are other harmless forms of cracked teeth such as craze lines. These are common among adults and affect only the enamel of your tooth. An endodontist knows best, so the importance of being evaluated by one after any high-impact incident in mixed martial arts cannot be understated.
If you have had a previous incident that resulted in trauma to your tooth, but you have delayed treatment, all hope is not lost. Informing yourself of the symptoms of a cracked tooth will help in identifying if you need the help of a specialist in endodontics:
- A cracked tooth will cause pain, in particular when releasing the biting pressure after chewing food.
- Sensitivity to temperatures that causes pain or discomfort.
- Tooth pain that is intermittent in frequency
The first thing to do if you receive a blow to the mouth during a mixed martial arts session is to stop practicing until it is evaluated by a dentist. A good precaution to take is to wear a sturdy mouth guard when engaging in MMA sparring sessions. This is an easy preventive method that can save you from the stress of a cracked tooth.