How Stress Can be Affecting Your Oral Health

We all deal with stress every single day. Sometimes that stress can be caused by life changing events or just day to day activities that can be overwhelming at times. No one loves to handle stress and it is a daily concern for most of us. Put simply, stress affects your health. Did you know it can also affect your oral health? The possible impact on your dental health can include:

● Mouth sores including canker and cold sores
● Clenching or grinding your teeth
● Not taking daily care of your teeth
● Eating a bad diet
● Bad habits like chewing your nails, ice pencils, etc
● Gum disease

Just what you need isn’t it? Another list of reasons of how stress is affecting your body. But if you know what to do there is no need to fear these dental challenges. That is why we are here.
Here are some solutions that can help a little stress of yours go away.

Mouth Sores

Canker and cold sores can hurt and are annoying. They usually don’t last very long, but to relieve some pain here are some solutions.

Canker sores – Try to avoid spicy foods. Use some over the counter medication if needed and contact us with a medicated rinse that will help heal it further.
Cold sores – These can be caused by emotional stress, fever, or sunburn. Start treatment as soon as possible because it can spread. There is over the counter medication or medication that can be prescribed by your dentist.

Teeth Grinding

Stress can cause some individuals to grind their teeth, during the day or night and often subconsciously. Grinding your teeth can lead to problems with your jaw. A night-guard can help stop or minimize the action.

Poor Dental Hygiene

Being under so much stress can affect your mood and in turn can cause you to skip flossing or brushing. It’s clear if you don’t take care of your mouth your overall oral health is going to suffer. Stress can also lead to unhealthy eating habits. Those unhealthy foods will affect your teeth and put you at risk for tooth decay and other problems. A solution that might help is to remind yourself of the importance of dental hygiene and eating healthy. When you feel better physically you will feel better emotionally and mentally. We know that is easier said than done but take it one day at a time. Sometimes seeking support from a family member, friend or dentist is an even better solution. When we take care of ourselves it starts to show in all aspects of our life including in our smile.

Gum Disease

It’s easy to see that long-term stress can cause dental plaque build up but even short-term stress can cause problems. Any stress you are feeling can add to the likelihood of bleeding gums or gingivitis which can gradually progress to serious gum disease. Solution- seeing your dentist regularly, eating a balanced diet, and good oral hygiene at home can help keep gum disease at bay. Brush at least twice a day and floss daily. Use an antibacterial mouthwash rinse twice daily to also help reduce plaque-causing bacteria.

We Can Help

We know that stress can be a lot to handle at times and we understand that it can be overwhelming. If you are experiencing any dental issues related to stress we can help. Newman Family Dentistry is a place you can be comfortable at and don’t have to worry about judgement. A place where you can let your dental stress go away and let us help you find the solutions you need. Call us today!

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