Stress seems like an inevitable part of everyday life. While daily, small stressors may not have too much of an impact, constant or severe stress can do damage to your smile. Below is a list of oral ailments that may occur from an excess of stress, along with tips on how to fight back against your stressors.
- A Sore Jaw: Stress may cause you to grind and clench your teeth, even when you are asleep. This could cause your teeth to become flatter than they once were, or could make your teeth more sensitive. Combat the soreness by talking to your dentist; they will help to determine a way to reduce damage to your teeth using mouth guards or other treatments.
- Gum Disease: Stress has been linked to the likelihood of getting gum disease, likely due to dietary changes and isolation. Stress may also make you more careless about your dental health, which, if persistent over a long period of time, could lead to gum disease. Make sure to maintain your oral hygiene and to take care of yourself in stressful times.
- Dry Mouth: Stress may cause you to breathe in through your mouth, which, in turn, may dry out the saliva. Certain medications taken to combat stress may also have dry mouth as a side effect. This can increase your risk of cavities, or could make your mouth feel generally uncomfortable. Although it is a temporary solution, drink enough water to stay hydrated and prevent your mouth from becoming dry.
While these ailments can be lessened through the aforementioned methods, the best way to prevent these problems is to determine what is stressing you and to try to resolve the issue. While you may not be able to eliminate the cause of your stress completely, you may be able to lessen its effects by reducing the severity of your anxieties or discovering better methods to cope with them. If you have any questions, please call our office at (215) 643-0666