Stress and anxiety affect us in many ways. They can impact physical health by increasing risk of heart disease and stroke, disrupting sleep, causing headaches, decreasing energy levels for exercise, and leading to depression. But, have you considered how they could also affect your teeth?
Here are a couple things you need to know:
*Periodontal Disease- Over time, stress can weaken your immune system, which means that your body is less capable of fighting off bacteria. This makes you more susceptible to infections like gum disease. In the early stages you would experience gum inflammation and possible bleeding when you brush you teeth; however, if left untreated, gum disease can lead to tooth loss as the tissue surrounding your teeth is destroyed.
*Bruxism (Teeth Grinding)- When you’re worried or upset, have you ever noticed discomfort in your jaw? Stress naturally leads you to clench your jaw, which can also lead to teeth grinding at night. This can wear down your enamel over time, and can potentially cause sensitivity or tooth decay, as well as potential permanent damage to your jaw. If you notice jaw tightness or think you may be grinding your teeth at night, come talk to us about protecting your teeth by getting a mouth guard.
It’s important to be aware how emotional health affects every part of your body. Be sure to continue brushing and flossing regularly, eating healthy, and scheduling regular dental check-ups to ensure those teeth stay happy, too! Don’t hesitate to contact Dr. Gabhart to schedule a check-up today.