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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2005  |  Volume : 23  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 67-70
 

Perceptions of Chandigarh sports coaches regarding oro-facial injuries and their prevention


Department of Dentistry, Government Medical College and Hospital, Chandigarh, India

Correspondence Address:
G Lehl
House No. 282, Sector 10-A, Chandigarh - 160 010
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0970-4388.16444

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   Abstract 

Enthusiastic participation by the younger generation in sports exposes them to a high risk of injuries. In the present study, the perceptions of sports coaches regarding their knowledge and experience of such injuries is evaluated. The coaches considered helmet as the most common protective device followed by mouth guard and facemask. About 58% observed that boxing was associated with oro-facial injuries and protective devices were deemed mandatory by 68% in this event. About 45% saw over five injuries in the last year, mostly soft tissue facial injuries (47%) and tooth loss (33%). Most injuries were in hockey and 32% were due to hits by ball, stick or related hard objects. About 82% were related to nonuse of protective devices. The majority of coaches considered that oro-facial devices be made more popular among sportspersons for their safety while 28% felt they reduced efficiency. The author concludes that there is a need to popularize the use of oro-facial protective devices in a variety of sports events in our country by interacting with coaches, sports administrators and sportspersons as well as familiarizing the Indian dentists in this relatively new field.


Keywords: Coaches, oro-facial protective devices, sports injuries


How to cite this article:
Lehl G. Perceptions of Chandigarh sports coaches regarding oro-facial injuries and their prevention. J Indian Soc Pedod Prev Dent 2005;23:67-70

How to cite this URL:
Lehl G. Perceptions of Chandigarh sports coaches regarding oro-facial injuries and their prevention. J Indian Soc Pedod Prev Dent [serial online] 2005 [cited 2019 Jul 23];23:67-70. Available from: http://www.jisppd.com/text.asp?2005/23/2/67/16444


Participation by youth in competitive sports events is increasing. One consequence of this is a higher proportion of sports related injuries. These account for 19.2-36% of all injuries in the children and adolescents[1],[2] with immediate and long lasting effects. Their prevention will be a step in reducing the accompanying pain, disfigurement and mental agony. The present study was undertaken due to paucity of data on sports related oro-facial and dental injuries in India. In this study, the author evaluated the perception of sports coaches regarding various aspects of sports related oro-facial injuries as they have a direct influence on the trainees. The objectives of the present study were to collect data from sports coaches regarding oro-facial injuries and their causation; oro-facial protective devices and their utilization as well as the influence of such injuries on the attitudes of coaches. The secondary objectives were to utilize the data to plan a sports injury preventive strategy at local level by providing feedback to coaches and trainees and by promoting the use of oro-facial protective devices.


   Materials and Methods Top


A questionnaire of 20 open and closed ended questions was framed after face validation by three coaches and content validation by three dentists [Table - 1]. Forty coaches of the Sports Department, Chandigarh (involved in training of youth at high school, college and university level) completed the questionnaire, after informed written consent. The data were analyzed statistically as percentages and proportions.


   Results Top


(A) The majority of coaches were males (M: F ratio 1.8:1), with the mean age was 40.7 years and 72.5% had over 10 years experience. The main specialization of the coaches is shown in [Figure - 1].

(B) Knowledge of oro-facial injuries and protective devices: in the opinion of coaches, boxing was most likely to cause oro-facial injuries and also the event in which protective devices were mandatory [Figure - 2] and [Figure - 3]. The most common oro-facial protective device, in their knowledge, was a helmet [Figure - 4].

(C) Interaction of coaches with medical/dental experts [Figure - 5]: the majority (87.8%) had interacted with medical experts and in 51.4% it was during their own training.

(D) Sports-related oro-facial injuries observed by the coaches in the last year:

(i) Number of injuries and relation to use of protective devices: 45% of coaches had seen over five injuries during the last year while 40% had seen 1-5. About 82%, they were related to nonuse of protective devices.

(ii) Mechanism and nature of injuries [Figure - 6]: majority (32%) of injuries were due to a hit by an object (i.e., ball and stick) or due to falls (30%). The most common injury was a soft tissue injury, i.e., cut on lips, cheek or tongue (47%) followed by dental trauma (33%).

(iii) Sports event in which such injuries were observed [Figure - 7]: Most injuries were observed in hockey followed by boxing and cricket. Fewer injuries were observed in football, basketball and martial arts.

(E) Other observations: 88.2% coaches observed that the athletes needed medical attention for their injuries and in 52.9% cases doctors did give preventive advice. Such injuries motivated 94% of coaches to insist on use of protective devices by their trainees but 27.5% observed that such devices reduced efficiency. About 90% coaches had to address parental concerns regarding sports related injuries and 77.7% observed that such concerns were justified. All coaches felt that girls were more concerned regarding such injuries.


   Discussion Top


About 30% injuries to anterior teeth are related to sporting activities (Blinkhorn FA).[3] Kujala et al[4] observed that injury rates were higher in those sports involving more frequent and powerful body contact like ice-hockey and karate. In a review on this subject Ranalli[5] observed that appropriate and properly fitted protective mouthguards, headgear and helmets prevent oro-facial trauma including dental injuries. Mandatory regulations regarding use of mouthguards reduced football injuries to face and mouth from 50 to 1.4%.[6] The epidemiology of oro-facial injuries, therefore, undergoes a paradigm shift with changes in equipment and regulations. The present study, the first of its kind from this region, addressed the issues of sports related injuries by focusing on coaches as they are the main influence on sports persons as well as sports administrators.

In the present study, 82% observed that injuries were related to nonuse of protective devices. In other series[7],[8] 63-75% such injuries occurred when a mouthguard was not used. For 58% coaches in the present study, boxing was more likely to produce oro-facial injuries and 68% observed that it was the sport, where oro-facial protective devices were mandatory. The coaches, however, observed more injuries in hockey followed by cricket and boxing. This was probably because a higher percentage of coaches was having hockey as their main sport (20%) followed by cricket (15%).

Among 10-18-year old players McNutt et al[8] observed oro-facial injuries in football (32%), basketball (21.6%) and baseball (18.6%). Flanders and Bhat[9] observed that 34% of injuries in basketball were oro-facial. The high velocity and intensity of football, hockey and rugby place them in the high-risk category for oro-facial injuries.[10]

Majority of injuries in the present study were due to hits by hard objects (32%) followed by falls (30%) and the most common injuries were to the soft tissues (47%) and dental trauma (33%). Rob Berg et al.[11] observed that 82.4% of observed injuries were cuts to lips, tongue or cheek while 14% were loose or broken teeth.

In the present study, the knowledge and experience of Indian sports coaches regarding oro-facial injuries is not very different from those in Western countries. However, there is a definite need to increase the practical utilization of protective devices in a variety of sports. This can be done by increased interaction between players, coaches and sports administrators with dentists. There is also an opportunity for dentists to encourage use of available protective devices whenever players come to the emergency with such injuries.



 
   References Top

1.Bijur PE, Trumble A, Hare LY. Sports and recreation injuries in U.S. children and adolescents. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med 1995;149:1009-16.  Back to cited text no. 1    
2.Marcenes W, Alessi ON, Traebert J. Causes and prevalence of traumatic injuries to the permanent incisors of schoolchildren aged 12 years in Jaragua do Sul, Brazil. Int Dent J 2000;50:87-92.  Back to cited text no. 2  [PUBMED]  
3.Blinkhorn FA. The aetiology of dentoalveolar injuries and factors influencing attendance for emergency care of adolescents in the North-West of England. Endodontics and Dental Traumatology 2000;16:162-5.  Back to cited text no. 3  [PUBMED]  
4.Kujala UM, Taimela S, Antti-Poika I, Orava S, Tuomian R, Myllynen P. Acute injuries in soccer, ice hockey, volleyball, basketball, judo and karate: Analysis of national registry data. BMJ 1995;311:1465-9.  Back to cited text no. 4    
5.Ranalli DN. Prevention of sports-related traumatic dental injuries. Dent Clin North Am 2000;44:35-51.  Back to cited text no. 5  [PUBMED]  
6.Sane J. Comparison of maxillo-facial and dental injuries in four contact team sports: American football, bandy, basketball and handball. Am J Sports Med 1988;16:47-51.  Back to cited text no. 6  [PUBMED]  
7.Garen MW, Merkle A, Wright JT. Mouth protectors and oral trauma: A study of adolescent football players. JADA 1986;112:663-5.  Back to cited text no. 7    
8.McNutt T, Shannon SW Jr., Wright JT, Feinstein RA. Oral trauma in adolescent athletes: A study of mouth protectors. Pediatr Dent 1989;11:209-13.  Back to cited text no. 8    
9.Flanders RA, Bhat M. The incidence of oro-facial injuries in sports: A pilot study in llinois. JADA 1995;126:491-6.  Back to cited text no. 9  [PUBMED]  
10.Fos PJ, Pinkham JR, Ranalli DN. Prediction of sports-related dental traumatic injuries. Dent Clin North Am 2000;44:19-33.  Back to cited text no. 10  [PUBMED]  
11.Berg R, Berkey DB, Tang MW, Altman DS, Londeree KA. Knowledge and attitudes of Arizona High school coaches regarding oral-facial injuries and mouth guard use among athletes. J Am Dent Assoc 1998;129:1425-32.  Back to cited text no. 11    


Figures

[Figure - 1], [Figure - 2], [Figure - 3], [Figure - 4], [Figure - 5], [Figure - 6], [Figure - 7]

Tables

[Table - 1]


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