Keep your own teeth - it just makes sense to be careful.
Sports Medicine Australia wants you to keep your own teeth. It asks parents, coaches and managers to work together and check all kids wear a mouthguard for training and games.
It just makes sense to keep your own teeth.
Next time you get a mouthguard made get a friend to hold your hand!
Actually what you need to do is get someone to apply pressure onto the central region of the palm of your hand. This has been shown to lessen the gag reflex. In a 2008 research article (Altering the Gag Reflex Via a Palm Pressure Point J Am Dent Assoc Oct 01, 2008; 139: 1365-1372.) the researcher reported that while it was known that acupunture to the ear or forearm can lessen the gagging reflex it is difficult to arrange this in a dental surgery. Based on finding from working with children with feeding delays a group of collegue students were tested with pressure to the palm of the hand and this was found more effective than a placebo, in making people less sensitive to stimuli that causes gagging.
Gagging is a really important reflex for protecting us from swallowing or breathing in unwanted substance. Some people are so sensitized that they can gag by just thinking about spoons etc. Try the pressure to the palm of the hand technique next time you get a mouthguard impression!
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Dr Grant Farmer BDSc (Melb)
Dr Glenda Farmer BDSc (Melb), BDentStud (Melb)
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