Stress can negatively affect your health — including your oral health — in many ways. While it may be unrealistic to think that you can completely eliminate stress from your life, managing stress is certainly possible. Doing so can help you keep a bright and healthy smile and avoid dental health problems.
Many dental health issues are at least partially caused by stress. In this post, Seattle dentists Drs. Don Jayne and Dean Kois discuss how stress affects your oral health.
Oral Health Conditions and Stress
Some oral health conditions are closely linked to stress. For example, teeth grinding is often caused by stress. Teeth grinding often occurs while sleeping and may require a teeth guard to avoid damage to your enamel.
Gum disease and tooth decay may also be related to stress. A weakened immune system can make you more susceptible to these and other health conditions.
Coping with Stress
Some people develop bad habits as a way to cope with stress. This can cause further problems, including poor dental health.
If you are a stress eater, you may overindulge on unhealthy foods that can promote tooth decay. Some people smoke or use tobacco when they are stressed, which can wreak havoc on the teeth and oral health.
Learning how to effectively manage stress can improve your overall health and protect your teeth. Talking about your problems with a friend, practicing relaxation techniques, and exercising are all effective ways to manage stress without resorting to unhealthy habits.
Neglecting Your Oral Hygiene
If you are overwhelmed by work, errands, and family responsibilities, you may forget to practice good dental hygiene habits. You might occasionally neglect to brush and floss your teeth. It may not seem like a big deal, but these habits are vital to keeping white and healthy teeth.
You may also have missed a dental appointment or forgotten to schedule your next dental checkup. Now is a good time to call and make your appointment because seeing your dentist twice a year keeps your teeth healthy and helps your avoid serious dental problems.
Get Help with Your Dental Problems
Oral health issues need to be treated by an experienced dentist. If you’ve been neglecting your oral hygiene, Drs. Jayne and Kois can identify your oral health issues and prevent more serious dental problems from developing. Call (206) 623-4400 today to schedule your next dental visit.