Ways Stress Can Impact Oral Health

Posted by ONE AND TRULY DENTAL Nov 28, 2022

Stress can have many effects on the body, including oral health. Stress can cause people to grind their teeth, clench their jaw, or bite their nails. It can also cause them to neglect their oral hygiene routine, which can contribute to tooth decay and gum disease.

Physical Stress

The physical causes of oral problems are obvious – physical forces can cause teeth to break and gums to recede. Even clenching or grinding your teeth can lead to damage over time. However, physical stress can also affect your oral health in more subtle ways. For example:

  • Many people grind their teeth while sleeping, often without even knowing it. Unfortunately, this habit can result in worn-down teeth and dental damage, such as broken fillings and cracked crowns.
  • Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that causes breathing to stop throughout the night as you slumber. This can happen hundreds of times each night, which deprives your body of oxygen. As a result, many people with sleep apnea experience dry mouth as they sleep, which can lead to tooth decay.
  • Certain medications can have side effects, such as dry mouth, that can make it difficult for you to keep the saliva in your mouth healthy. This can lead to an increased risk of cavities.
  • When you’re stressed, you may unconsciously clench your jaw or grind your teeth, both of which can cause damage to dental work. Additionally, if you’re under a lot of stress, you may not practice the best oral hygiene habits like brushing and flossing regularly.

Emotional Stress

Canker sores, gum infections, and dry mouth are all common side effects of emotional stress that affect your oral health. That’s because people often subconsciously clench their jaw when they’re stressed. This can lead to tooth damage and gum disease if the habit persists over time.

Other ways your emotional state can affect your mouth include teeth grinding and eating disorders.

If you’re experiencing oral health issues due to stress, talk to your Glen Cove dentist about possible solutions that can help protect your smile. Your dentist may recommend using a night guard to prevent damage from nighttime teeth grinding. They can also help you create a healthier oral hygiene routine that minimizes the impact of stress on your smile.

To find out more about the dental services offered at One and Truly Dental, call (516)-759-0086 or schedule an online consultation. You can also visit us at 70 Glen St, #240 Glen Cove, NY, 11542.

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