stress impacts oral health photo credit: francisco-moreno

You may be aware of the physical and emotional symptoms of stress such as headaches, stomachaches, and anxiety.  Did you know that stress can also affect your oral health? It’s essential to find the causes of your stress and know your body’s early warning signs.

How Stress Affects Your Oral Health

Teeth Grinding

Habitual teeth grinding and jaw clenching is known as bruxism. A common reaction to stress and frustration is clenching and grinding our teeth. Typically, teeth grinding occurs during sleep, so many people are unaware that they have this problem. How can you tell if you suffer from bruxism? Flatter tips of the teeth and a sore jaw are common signs of bruxism.

TMJ

Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ), affects the jaw and the neck muscles used to move the jaw. Like bruxism, stress can contribute to TMJ causing clenching of the jaw, pain in the jaw joint, headaches and sometimes even popping or clicking in the jaw.

Weakened Immune System

Stress has an enormous effect on your immune system. When your immune system is not operating on an ideal level, the risk for oral infection increases. Symptoms of oral infections include dry mouth -which increases the chances of developing cavities – canker sores – the small spots with a white or grayish base that have red borders on the sides of your mouth – and in some cases gum disease.

Maintain Good Oral Hygiene and Health

When you’re stressed, you may develop unhealthy eating habits, such as snacking on sugary foods or drinks, which raises your odds of tooth decay. It is very common for people not to see the effects of stress on their bodies until they experience a health issue. Visiting your dentist regularly not only ensures preventative care but they can identify signs of stress in your mouth and help you to correct any problems.

Dentists Can Help You When You’re Stressed

We know that when you are under a ton of stress, the last thing you’re concerned with is the state of your oral health. Learning to deal with the inevitable stresses of life positively will boost your oral and overall health. However, if you do feel you are experiencing any symptoms of bruxism, TMD or other oral health problems, call us and schedule an appointment. We have solutions for you!

Keeping our patients happy and healthy is our priority! Call Implantation Dental Center today at 954-476-0770 to learn how we can help to keep your mouth stress free!

By Dr. Mauricio Hervas | June 25, 2018 | Comments: 1 | Dental Health

One response to “How Stress Affects Your Oral Health”

  1. […] When stressed out, some people inadvertently clench their teeth together throughout the day. In some cases, people can even clench their teeth and grind them at night without even knowing. Clenching your teeth puts unnecessary stress and pressure on both the teeth and the jawline. What’s more, over time, clenching can result in eroded tooth enamel, chipped or fractured teeth, headaches and tenderness along the jawline, and an imbalanced bite. If you are aware of a bad clenching habit or you suspect that you are clenching your teeth at night when you sleep, speak with your dentist to receive a custom-made mouthguard in addition to other strategies that can help prevent your teeth from this damaging habit. […]

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