Can Stress Affect Oral Health?

Can Stress Affect Oral Health?

Posted by ELAN DENTAL on May 13 2023, 07:38 AM

Can Stress Affect Oral Health?

We all experience some degree of stress in our lives, and we know that it can make us feel uncomfortable and even irritable. This sensation is the body’s way of reacting to dangers or threats that we perceive are outside of our control. While some people may not feel stressed very often, others may experience it much more often and for much longer periods of time. Being under stress for long periods of time can have serious consequences on your oral health. That’s because stress can compromise your immune system, allowing diseases like periodontal gum disease to manifest.

Whether we suffer from chronic stress or just feel it periodically in response to certain situations—such as a job interview or deadline at work—our body reacts the same way. Our digestive system slows down, and our blood flow narrows in all of our major organs, including our mouth. This means that our body has fewer resources to use to fight infection or disease. Because stress weakens the immune system, both invasive procedures and routine dental care become dangerous for people who already suffer from chronic infections like periodontal disease.

Stress And Oral Health

The connection between stress and oral health is a two-way street. Even with good oral hygiene, you can’t prevent all cavities and gum disease from developing, and this can increase your stress levels over time. Likewise, if you’re stressed all the time, this can cause you to develop poor habits with your oral health, like forgetting to floss or skipping routine teeth cleanings. This can then lead to more issues with your teeth, which can, in turn, cause more stress. It’s a vicious cycle!

If you aren’t taking care of your stress, it can impact your health in many ways – including your oral health. Prolonged exposure to stress can lead to dry mouth or teeth grinding (bruxism). It can also cause you to neglect your teeth-brushing and flossing habits. All of these behaviors can contribute to the development of gum disease or tooth decay.

Over time, if untreated, gum disease can cause tooth loss. When you lose a tooth, you may also experience bone loss in your jaw. This can also lead to changes in your facial appearance by causing the appearance of sunken cheeks, which can affect the way you look in photographs or have visible wrinkles around your mouth and lips.

A dentist can help you manage the effects of stress on your oral health through a variety of treatment options. For example, if you grind your teeth at night, your dentist can create a mouth guard that you wear while you sleep to protect the surfaces of your teeth from damage due to grinding. If you suffer from dry mouth, your dentist can provide prescription medications to keep your mouth moist. These medications can also help heal any damage to the soft tissues of your mouth caused by bacteria from your saliva.

The best way to avoid these complications from stress-induced weakened immunity is to take care of your teeth and gums before they become infected. Brushing and flossing regularly will prevent plaque buildup. When bacteria are allowed to flourish in your mouth, they will cause inflammation of the gums, which will eventually lead to periodontal disease. By taking care of your mouth, you protect your body from the potential health complications that come from long-term stress and weakened immune systems. Try to keep your stress levels in check so you can protect your oral and overall health!

If you have concerns about dental health or wish to learn more tips to improve your oral health, visit Elan Dental or call us at (919) 556-6761 and schedule an appointment.

Share On

Leave A Reply

Please fill all the fields.


310 suite a S Main St, Rolesville, NC 27571

Office Hours

MON - THU 8:00 am - 5:00 pm

FRI - SUN Closed

Get in Touch

Email: [email protected]

Phone: (919) 556-6761