Can Stress Affect Your Oral Health?
Many of us have stressful lives. It seems like we are always being pulled in different directions and have a long to-do list. Whether it is your career, family obligations, events with friends, or volunteering responsibilities, there is always something to keep us busy and on the move. Leading a stressful life is not ideal for your overall health. It can lead to serious health complications both now and in your future. You may be surprised to learn that your stress levels can also impact your oral health as well.
Signs of Stress in Your Mouth
During your routine visits, we are able to notice warning signs that would indicate you have higher stress levels. Stress on your teeth can lead to damage and the need for dental intervention. These are some ways your stress can be affecting your oral health:
Clenching and Grinding
Patients are often surprised to learn they clench and grind their teeth as it often happens during times of sleep. Over time clenching or grinding can lead to significant oral issues such as sensitive teeth, worn teeth, and cracked or broken teeth.
High stress levels can cause your heart to race, similar to what you experience during exercise. This can cause dry mouth, or a lack of saliva in the mouth. Saliva is needed to help remove bacteria after eating. A lack of saliva increases your risk of developing tooth decay.
Sores in the Mouth
A harmful habit when you are under stress is chewing the inside of your cheek or your lip. Chewing on your lip can lead to cracked and chapped lips. Chewing the inside of your mouth can cause canker sores. These sores are extremely uncomfortable and can affect the way you chew and eat.
If you notice that you are experiencing any issues with your mouth, please contact our office located in Spotswood, NJ 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!