By Debra Sigel
It’s not often that you hear a high-school-aged girl say they’re not afraid of being elbowed in the face.
“I got hit pretty hard last night and I was good,” said Carmel High School junior girls basketball player Carrie Larson.
Players on the team have gained a new sense of security and confidence playing physical games thanks to new custom mouthguards developed right here in Carmel, said girls basketball assistant coach Joe Stuelpe.
Kristoff and Hanson Family Dentistry entered into a sponsorship agreement with the CHS athletics department in October. The sponsorship allowed the practice the opportunity to speak at desired athletic parent-coach preseason meetings regarding mouthguards.
Kristoff and Hanson Marketing Director Lori Thomas said, “(The company) felt this was a great opportunity for our doctors to let our community know the importance of athletes having access to high-quality mouthguards that our office can provide.”
With the support of CHS athletic director Jim Inskeep, the company set out to create a program to present to CHS athletes.
The dentistry practice is unique in that it can fabricate the custom multiple-layered mouthguards right in its office, Thomas said. This mouthguard can be modified for full-contact sports using layering to achieve a defined end result under a high-heat pressure environment.
Thomas said that efficient and complete lamination cannot be achieved using the low-heat and vacuum methods which most dental practices offer, adding that dentists who specialize in athlete care highly recommend the custom-made mouthguards for the very best protection, as well as concussion deterrence.
“The Colts football team uses the same mouthguards that we produce,” Thomas said. “This illustrates a fine example of the quality of the product.”
“We can offer a lower cost for the CHS athletes, since our practice has the capability to fabricate the mouthguard in house,” she said.
And the girls on the CHS basketball team also liked that Dr. Kristoff and Dr. Hanson came out to the high school to do everything, Stuelpe said. It was very convenient to get fitted at the high school and to then have the mouth guards delivered here.