5285 Commerce St. Jay, FL 32565

Current Patients 850.675.8545

New Patients 850.427.5891

How Chronic Stress Impacts Oral Health

When you’re under stress, you can hold tension in your body. Stress not only has an impact on your blood pressure and your heart but on your oral health as well. Many patients who deal with chronic stress may also have dental problems. As your dentist in Milton, FL, we want to help you understand what problems can arise from stress and how we can address these oral health issues in our office.

How Chronic Stress Impacts Oral Health

Oral Health Issues Connected to Stress

Sometimes, stress can have a direct impact on your dental health. There are some dental problems exacerbated by stress:

  • Teeth Grinding: Bruxism, or teeth clenching and grinding, occurs unconsciously when patients are stressed during the day or sleep.
  • Gum Disease: Stress can impact your immune system. With a depleted immune system, you can be more at risk of developing problems like gum disease. Gum disease is a bacterial infection that affects the gums. While gum disease begins as irritated and bleeding gums, patients can experience gum recession and tooth loss in severe cases.
  • Tooth Decay: As with gum disease, a depleted immune system can impact dental health. You can experience tooth pain and sensitivity if you have dental decay. Injuries due to clenching and grinding can also expose the underlayer of teeth to harmful bacteria. Patients who neglect a healthy diet or good oral hygiene routine during stress may begin to develop tooth infections.
  • Mouth sores: Problems with your immune system can also increase the likelihood of mouth sores.

If you have noticed any of these problems, don’t hesitate to contact us so we can find the right treatment for your needs.

Reducing Stress

You can do some things at home to help reduce your anxiety. Breathing exercises and yoga can help calm your mind and stretch tense muscles that can often contribute to problems like TMD. Physical activity can help distract your mind from stress. Medication can lessen your stress if you are diagnosed with an anxiety disorder. Muscle relaxants can be especially helpful if you clench or grind your teeth. Taking prescribed muscle relaxants before bed can prevent strain on the jaw and facial muscles.

Caring For Your Smile in our Milton, FL Office

Patients with bruxism and TMJ disorders benefit from professional nightguards. Wearing a nightguard during sleep protects the teeth against further wear and holds the jaw comfortably. We may also recommend physical therapy for TMD patients to help them exercise tense muscles in the face, back, and shoulders that contribute to TMD.

Treatment for gum disease in our office includes deep gum cleanings. We remove bacterial buildup from the gums and tooth roots during cleanings like scaling and root planing. We can also place antibacterial medication in the gum pockets. Regular cleanings can keep gum disease in check.

Contact Lassiter Smiles to restore the comfort of your smile at 850.427.5891. You may also schedule a dental appointment with Dr. Jim Lassiter online. If you have developed dental problems linked to stress, request a consultation with us.