It is well known that your diet has a massive impact on your oral health, but the amount of stress also impacts your teeth and oral health. Here are five dental health issues that may occur due to stress.
From toddlers to adults, anyone can experience teeth grinding or bruxism. Often people experience this during the night time, when they grind or clench their teeth during sleep. This condition is known as sleep or nocturnal bruxism. It is not unique to the night and one can also experience this during the day, which is known as awake bruxism.
Over time, teeth grinding wears away the surface of the teeth, eventually flattening the tips of the teeth. However, teeth grinders may first experience jaw stiffness, earaches, headaches, and pain.
Due to normal wear and tear, your teeth develop tiny fissures and cracks. These tiny fissures are not an issue on their own. But if you anxiously tend to frequently grind your teeth involuntarily while sleeping your teeth can fracture and break when these microscopic fissures receive too much pressure.
As a result of grinding and clenching, your teeth may lose the protective layer. Although tooth enamel is the body's strongest tissue, it is also the thinnest and is susceptible to wear over time. When your teeth lose their enamel coating, they become more susceptible to hot, cold, sweet and sour foods.
Since tooth enamel cannot be replaced by the body, it is advisable to visit a dentist if you are noticing an increase in tooth sensitivity. The dentist can advise you on how to stop further enamel loss and how to fortify your remaining enamel.
Gum disease is most frequently brought on by bad oral hygiene. But stress can also aggravate this condition. Since stress leads to the production of complex and detrimental effects on the body’s immune system. A compromised immune system may allow harmful bacteria to increase their activity, leading to further damage.
Your jaw bone and skull are connected by a joint called the temporomandibular joint, or TMJ. Your lower jaw can move forward, back, and side to side as you open and close your mouth. Sometimes, this joint may experience pain or dysfunction, leading to temporomandibular (TMJ) disorder.
The symptoms of this disorder include pain, trouble opening or moving the jaw, clicking noises when moving, and headache or muscular soreness. Stress affects this condition and makes TMJ disorder worse. Certain stress-relieving behaviours like chewing gum or resting the chin on the palms may be linked to TMJ disorder.
Consult a dentist if you experience any of these signs or symptoms frequently. When you're at rest, your teeth shouldn't be in contact. If they do, consult your dentist, who may advise you to wear a night guard or retainer.
[Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only and should not be taken as expert advice. In case of any doubt, talk to your dentist.]
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