How Stress Affects Your Oral Health

Stress can affect your mind and body in ways we don’t even realize. Did you know that stress can also affect your oral health?

Are You Constantly Stressed Out?

Of course, it is easier said than done when you are told you should control your stress, but it is a good goal to try for. Stress can not only suck the fun out of life, it can give you a constant stomach ache, constant headaches, and constant muscle tension. And it can cause serious oral problems as well:

  • Jaw problems. Stress can cause your jaw muscle to tense up. A constant jaw ache is painful and can also eventually make it difficult to even eat properly.
  • Gum problems. Our bodies release cortisol when we are under stress, a hormone that can wear down the immune system. This can make gums susceptible to bacteria in the mouth, and it can be harder for the body to fight infection. This can cause gum disease – when you have been under stress for a long time, you may notice your gums are swollen and they bleed easily. If left untreated, gum disease can result in losing teeth.
  • Oral hygiene problems. If you are under a lot of stress, spending time and energy taking care of your teeth might be the last thing on your mind, so they don’t get as clean as they should. You might also develop some habits that can harm teeth to try to deal with stress, such as biting your nails or chewing on your pen.
  • Tooth problems. One way people may deal with stress is to grind their teeth. You may catch yourself doing this in the middle of a stressful situation, or you may do it as you sleep, so you don’t even realize you have this habit. Over time, grinding your teeth can cause them to crack or break and wear them down.

If you are always under stress, take care of your mind, your body, and your teeth! Contact Lerner & Lemongello in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, if you are in pain or if it’s just time for a cleaning and exam. Call (561) 627-9000 for an appointment today!

Skip to content