Is Stress Damaging your Dental Health?

Stressed Out WomanLong term stress effects your immune system, your heart health, and your overall health. You may not relate stress to your dental health, however. Many people become caught up with the stress of all of the necessary tasks they have. If you keep an insane schedule which includes eating and drinking at odd hours and falling asleep before you have a chance to brush and floss your teeth, these lifestyle habits can take a heavy toll on your teeth. So, too, can falling asleep a bundle of nerves.

Bad Habits Caused by Stress

When life becomes overwhelming, you may not feel there is enough time to get everything on your to-do list checked off. As such, oral hygiene can become a lower priority. Proper dental hygiene recommendations include twice-a-day brushing and once-a-day flossing, at minimum. When you are feeling stressed out, you may lose track of your dental hygiene schedule, or blow it off as a low priority. Try and keep your self-care habits on track, however, no matter how crazy your life gets. Otherwise, you might find yourself with a high stress situation such as the need for dental fillings, root canal procedures, or periodontal disease treatment.

The Bruxism “Grind”

Teeth grinding is often an unconscious offshoot of stress. Clinically known as bruxism, teeth grinders often grind and clench their teeth while they sleep, making them completely oblivious to the habit. Bruxism wears down the enamel and surfaces of your smile over time. This can lead to severe tooth sensitivity and a propensity towards dental decay and infection. Chronic and excessive pressure on your jaw also leads to potential pain and swelling in your jawbone. This is known as temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD) – a condition of chronic pain in various areas of the body brought about by inflammation of the jaw joints (TMJs).

Visit your Des Moines Dentist

Are you concerned about the negative effects of stress on your dental health? You can contact our 50309 dental office by calling (515) 244-9565. Located in the 50309 area, we proudly welcome patients from Des Moines, River Bend, Kirkwood Glen, East Village, and neighboring communities.