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Keep Your Teeth Healthy with These Tips on De-Stressing

Stress is unavoidable, but it can wreak havoc on your overall health. A rise in oral pain and teeth grinding during the Covid-19 pandemic point to increased stress brought on by feelings of isolation, being away from loved ones, and worrying about health or job security—even checking the news can bring out stress and anxiety in anyone.

High stress levels left unchecked can weaken your immune system opening up the opportunity of developing more serious health conditions.

Can Stress Affect Your Teeth?

Stress and teeth problems are more closely related than they may seem. Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) Dysfunction is an indication that stress is affecting your mouth. Signs of TMJ include clenching your jaw and grinding your teeth can lead to nerve damage, soreness of tendons and muscles, and ultimately, arthritis.

Other negative effects stress can have on your teeth and gums include:

  • Gum disease
  • Tooth decay
  • Canker sores
  • Broken or chipped teeth
  • Headaches from grinding teeth
  • Inability to sleep

Tips to De-Stress

Identifying how you’re handling stress is crucial. In addition to keeping up with your dental care routine, try some of these tips to help manage stress to avoid doing serious damage to your oral health:

  • Prioritize sleep
  • Listen to music
  • Declutter your environment
  • Call a friend
  • Go for a walk
  • Get a change of scenery
  • Learn a new skill
  • Play with a pet
  • Meditate
  • Visit a professional behavior therapist

Carrying too much stress can be unhealthy for your overall oral and mental health. Identifying stressors is the first step to managing stress and anxiety. If you think tension from your daily life affects your teeth and gums, consult a dental professional to find a solution that fits your needs.

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This article is intended to promote understanding of and knowledge about general oral health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your dentist or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.

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