National_Facial_protection_monthApril is National Facial Protection Month, and the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) is offering a number of tools to help educate patients and communities about the importance of those who are active in sports protecting themselves from facial injuries. The AAO encourages practitioners to educate patients and the community about the importance of mouth guard use.

National Facial Protection Month is sponsored by the AAO, the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, the Academy of Sports Dentistry, and the American Dental Association.

The AAO offers its members access to a number of tools aimed at social media campaigns, including a series of social media posts—one for each day from April 1 to 30—that focus on the importance of facial protection. In addition, members who want to create their own posts can access AAO stock images of mouth guards. The AAO also offers its “Bubble Wrap” video for linking or download. The video offers a humorous introduction to a serious subject and is ideal for social media use.

For in-office promotion of National Facial Protection Month, the AAO offers members facial protection posters showing activities in which wearing a mouth guard is essential to safety, and brochures for in-office displays.

Customizable press materials are also available to provide local media outlets with story ideas and for members to offer themselves as a professional resource on this topic.

The AAO encourages members to offer community education nights in the office for parents or coaches as a way to develop new relationships for the practice and to provide the community with important information on the importance of wearing mouth guards during sports, especially for those players who have orthodontic appliances. The AAO offers members a number of handouts for parents and coaches on facial protection.