Why Dentist Visits Can Reduce Stress


Too much stress can make you feel down. It can give you headaches, butterflies in your stomach and sometimes make you feel queasy. Stress can also have negative impacts on oral health, a fact that is unknown to a lot of people. Here are some ideas why it pays to have a dentist regularly consulting you to avert poor oral health caused by stress.


How Stress Affects Oral Heath

Stress and anxiety can cause oral health difficulties. Stress could impact certain oral health issues such as mouth sores, teeth grinding, poor oral hygiene and unhealthy eating habits. One obvious effect of stress is that people lose their appetite for food.  And, this habit of skipping meals especially when stressed out can devastate one’s health in so many ways. Poor eating habits can lead to lowered immune system.  Some apparent manifestations of lowered immune system include oral health problems. It can also lead to unhealthy gums or worsening of existing periodontal diseases. The current life challenges have made people vulnerable to the ill-effects of stress. Unfortunately, poor oral health is just one of the many adverse effects of stress.


Stress and oral health decline

People are unaware of how much they have been subjected to stress until the symptoms appear. Add to that the fact that most people are not aware of the effects of stress until they get the chance to visit the dentist’s office. While they were exposed to stress, they did not knew that their teeth, gum and overall oral health are also suffering from its ill effects. This is one of the reasons why it is recommended to visit the dentist twice a year in order to prevent any catastrophic oral health problems getting blown out of proportions that can otherwise be prevented.



If you clench or grind your teeth then you may be suffering from bruxism. The clenching happens when you press both levels of teeth together tightly. The grinding occurs when you rub your teeth back and forth and against each other. A sign of wear and tear is an indication that bruxism is happening. However, it is not fully understood why stress impacts bruxism. Nonetheless, it is important to address the root cause before dire consequences on oral health happens.


Canker sores

Canker sores are generally not contagious. The sores may be caused by trauma such as biting the cheek or blunting the gum with a toothbrush. Sores can also be caused by overeager teeth cleaning. A recent peer-reviewed journal published a study showing that high occurrence of canker sores appear in the mouths of students when they are subjected to too much stress.


Jaw problems

Jaw problems are another indication of stress. Temporomanibular disorders (TMD) are conditions that impact oral health. TMD can result from bruxism. Stress can aggravate the situation that could lead to jaw popping and jaw pain. Dentists can easily detect and correct this condition when you make regular visits at least twice a year.


Stress management

Visiting the dentist on a regular basis can help spare you from the hassle of having teeth and mouth problems which may cause you so much stress. Aside from frequent dentist visits, it is important to lower stress levels to better oral health. Doing exercise and yoga are still the best ways to reduce stress. Regular massage and employment of relaxation techniques may ease tension. It is also very important to incorporate healthy foods into one’s daily diet. Food can greatly help us strengthen our capability to fight against the adverse effects of stress. Depending on the symptoms, the dentist may put special braces or special instruments as treatment.


Dentists may detect and correct oral health but not the root cause. It is important to address the core reason why you are stressed. Stress can only be reduced. When stress starts to creep in, one must be quick enough to find ways to subdue it before it starts wreaking havoc not only to your oral health but also to your life as a whole.


About the Author:

This article was written by Ryan Rivera, who used to suffer from anxiety attacks for 7 years.  He has now dedicated his life to writing posts that can help people who are coping with anxiety, stress, panic attacks and depression.  If you want to read more about him, check out some of his articles at Calm Clinic.