Stress And The Effect On Oral Health
At Brown and Gettings, DDS, we often discuss the importance of your oral and overall health. There is one issue that can be negatively impacting both — stress. Whether it is caused by your career or life circumstances, stress can lead to serious health issues, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, and stroke. Patients are often surprised to learn that your stress level can also be causing problems with your oral health.
Oral Conditions Caused By Stress
When we examine your mouth, we are often able to tell the amount of stress you are under based on signs we can see in your teeth and mouth. These are some ways stress can be negatively affecting your oral health:
Clenching and Grinding
One of the most common ways stress comes out in your mouth is through clenching and grinding. This is when you place added stress on your teeth. Many patients are unaware they are experiencing this problem, as it commonly occurs during sleep. If not treated, clenching and grinding can lead to serious issues, such as uneven tooth wear, worn enamel, tooth sensitivity, and cracked and broken teeth.
When some people are nervous, they bite the side of their mouth or their lips. This biting can cause mouth sores, such as canker sores, to develop, which can be extremely uncomfortable and make it difficult to eat and drink properly.
When your heart rate is elevated, it can lead to an increased breathing rate, similar to when you are exercising. This can cause dry mouth, a condition where there is a lack of saliva present in your mouth. Over time, dry mouth can lead to issues with decay and gum disease.
If you notice that you are experiencing any issues with your mouth, please contact our office located in West Chester, OH as soon as possible. Dental issues that remain untreated can progress into something serious over time and can lead to extreme discomfort and costly repairs. We also recommend scheduling an appointment if you have not had a routine hygiene examination in some time. We hope to see you soon!