How the holidays might affect your dental health
Holidays are often a joyful and exciting time of the year. However, the stress of the season, from gathering with friends and relatives to finishing up last minute Holiday shopping, may take a toll on your teeth and gums. There are a number of stress-related oral problems that might manifest themselves if you are feeling stressed.
Teeth grinding and clenching of the jaws are medically referred to as bruxism. Stress and worry are common culprits, while it may also be the consequence of not getting enough sleep, having an incorrect bite, or having missing or crooked teeth. Tender tongues, eroded tooth enamel, and rounded tooth tips are all tell-tale signs of bruxism. A dental assessment can help determine or not a nightguard for your mouth is necessary.
Experiencing discomfort in the jaw
Bruxism, which involves the involuntary clenching and grinding of the teeth, is a common cause of jaw discomfort, medically known as temporomandibular joint disorders (TMJ). The symptoms of TMJ, such as jaw joint discomfort or popping and clicking of the jaw, might appear even if you don’t have flat teeth or other evidence of bruxism.
You should contact a dentist if you have any of these symptoms to rule out TMJ as a possible cause.
In adults, gum disease (periodontal disease) may be caused or exacerbated by a number of circumstances, some of which are emotional. Day to day stresses of life, loneliness or work might have an influence on the health of your gums. Stress and financial hardship may be the largest risk factors for gum disease.
The good news? Individuals who take an assertive stance in the face of financial stress were not shown to be at a higher risk for severe gum disease than those who did not experience financial stress. Visit your dentist if you have any concerns regarding the condition of your gums.
Sometimes termed mouth ulcers, canker sores primarily originate within the mouth and are not communicable. They are often brought on by trauma, as when you bite your inner cheeks or brushing your teeth too roughly, but stress may also play a role.
The stress hormone cortisol was measured in the saliva of patients with canker sores, and their mental health profiles were analysed in a research published in Contemporary Clinical Dentistry. Researchers observed that anxiety and depression levels were greater in patients with canker sores than in the control group.
Keeping your oral health in check while you’re stressed
• The harmful effects of stress can be mitigated in part by avoiding potentially stressful circumstances and skipping out on activities when you’re feeling overwhelmed.
• Keep up with your regular dental hygiene routine, even if you’re feeling overwhelmed by stress. Avoiding routine dental treatment might lead to more serious health issues down the road, so don’t let that discourage you from taking care of your teeth.
• Brush your teeth twice daily, use floss once daily, and schedule routine dental appointments. In addition, consider using the following stress-reduction strategies:
• Take care of yourself and get plenty of rest by eating well and sleeping on time.
• Get your blood pumping. Yoga, running, and other forms of exercise, as well as massage and physical treatment, might be beneficial.
• Talk about how you’re feeling with a professional or a group of trustworthy people you know you can trust.
• Set aside some time each day to unwind and reflect.