How is Stress Affecting Your Oral Health?

How is Stress Affecting Your Oral Health?

Trio Dental Care / on Aug 17 2022, 04:20 AM

Stress can be both psychological and physical. It can be caused by an event such as losing a job, or an illness, or it can be due to an ongoing source. When your body is under stress, whether emotional or physical, it releases hormones like cortisol and adrenaline that prepare your body for action. 

This “fight or flight” response has been around as long as humans have roamed the earth. But today, we experience stress more often than our ancestors did, mainly due to our busy modern lifestyles. This leads to higher levels of stress hormones in your body than you’re meant to experience.

Stress and Oral Health

Over time, stress can lead to serious health problems, including high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes and can also impact your oral health. 

Here are some of the ways stress can negatively affect your oral health:

  • Jaw clenching or teeth grinding at night can damage your enamel.
  • You might not be able to brush and floss as thoroughly when you’re feeling stressed. This can lead to tooth decay if you aren’t keeping up with proper oral hygiene habits. 
  • If you suffer from bruxism (teeth grinding), you may experience symptoms like jaw pain, headaches, earaches, or worn-out tooth enamel. 
  • Sinus infections can be caused by stress and untreated cavities. A sinus infection can cause severe pain and discomfort around the top of your mouth and between your cheeks.
  • You might notice gum disease symptoms like swollen gums, bleeding while brushing, and bad breath. These symptoms are caused when your gums become inflamed. 
  • You might not visit your dentist as often as you should if you have a busy schedule or aren’t feeling well. This can lead to more serious dental health problems since oral diseases are much easier to treat when they’re caught early. 

Manage Your Stress

Unmanaged stress can have adverse effects on your oral health. It can cause dry mouth, which can prevent your body from healing after gum disease. Stress may also cause you to neglect your oral hygiene routine. 

However, you can reduce your stress levels and improve your smile by taking care of yourself physically and mentally. You can adopt healthy habits that can promote relaxation and help you combat the effects of stress on your smile, such as:

  • Reduce alcohol intake
  • Limit sugary snacks and drinks
  • Get enough sleep nightly
  • Drink plenty of water throughout the day
  • Exercise regularly
  • Eat a well-balanced diet
  • Spend time with friends, family, or pets

These tips can help you lower your stress levels and improve your quality of life. The healthier you are, the healthier your teeth and mouth will be. This can help reduce the risk of developing oral health issues. Remember that visiting your dentist every six months is an important habit that can help promote a healthy smile.

To learn more about our dental procedures, call us at (909) 314-1783 and schedule an appointment with our dentist in Fontana, CA.

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