Three Dental Conditions That May Indicate You Are Stressed

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If you are like most people, you experience stress at various points in your life. The main source of this stress may be related to your work, family, finances, or other things in your life. It can affect you in many different ways. While some of the signs and symptoms of your stress may show up outwardly, others may only be evident to your dentist. By scheduling regular dental checkups, your dentist will be to identify these dental conditions, as well as come up with a plan to help you to deal with them.


If you wake up with a dull or constant pain in your jaw or with a regular morning headache, you may be suffering from bruxism. This is simply another name for grinding your teeth during the night. This is a relatively common condition that can be brought on by stress, tension, frustration and anxiety, but it may also be brought on by other conditions. These include:

  • Sleep apnea
  • Missing or crooked teeth
  • Acid reflux
  • Stimulants
  • Abnormal bite
  • Various medications and more

Because this takes place when you are sound asleep, you may not even be aware that you are doing this, but your dentist will be able to tell. They will be able to see the wear and tear that the grinding will cause to your teeth. If this behavior is not addressed, it can lead to fracturing of your teeth that may eventually lead to tooth loss or other conditions of your jaw.

One of the easiest ways for your dentist to address this is to fit you with a mouth guard that will keep your teeth from touching during the night. In addition to the mouth guard, you may want to enroll in some type of counseling to deal with the stress or anxiety that may be causing your condition. In addition to these interventions, you may need some type of dental correction to help to align or reshape your teeth.

Gum Disease

If you are stressed out about financial situations, this may affect your gum health. When you are stressed it can have an impact on your immune system. This in turn can impact how effectively you are able to fight off the bacteria that will cause you to have gum infections.

The good news is that if you learn to deal with your financial problems in a positive way, you will be no more at risk of having gum disease than any other person. Schedule regular cleanings with your dentist to ensure that your gums stay in the best shape they can be in.

Canker Sores

Another thing that can happen when stress affects your body's ability to effectively deal with the bacteria in your mouth is the development of canker sores, or small ulcers. Unlike fever blisters that most commonly develop on the outside of your mouth, these develop inside of your mouth, and may be found on the inside of your jaw, on your tongue, or on the roof of your mouth.

In addition to being caused by stress and anxiety, these can also be caused by several other factors. These include:

  • Dental appliances
  • Acidic foods
  • A jagged tooth
  • Vitamin or mineral deficiencies
  • GI diseases and more

Although these will normally resolve themselves without treatment, your dentist may make you more comfortable by prescribing a corticosteroid ointment or an antimicrobial mouth wash. There are also over-the-counter rinses and treatments that will also help to dull the pain. If you experience a canker sore, you will want to avoid any type of spicy or acidic food due to the fact these will burn and irritate the area.

Unfortunately, stress is a very common part of life. You need to find positive ways to deal with the stress in your life before it begins to affect not only your oral health but your overall health. Consider participating in a hobby that you enjoy or learning relaxation or meditative techniques. For more information, navigate to this site.