How stress affects the health of your mouth

Stress can cause complications in the mouth, from decay and bruxism to the appearance of cold sores in those moments of increased stress. If you want to know more about it, here we tell you why being more calm and relaxed allows you to maintain a good quality of life in general, your mouth included.

It is already known that back pain or neck pain can be caused by stress, as well as burning in the stomach or those terrible headaches that do not let you live in peace. Have you noticed that cold sore outbreaks come to you in those moments of greatest complications and tension? Is not it in those situations when you wake up with jaw pain from grinding your teeth? All these discomforts can also be caused or exacerbated (increased) by stress.

In the same way, and although they seem completely disconnected situations, being under a situation of stress for a long time can also cause the appearance of cavities. This does not happen by magic, but by a kind of “domino effect”: stress makes the defense system weaken and that causes a decrease in the production of saliva. Less saliva means that the acids increase and attack directly the enamel of the teeth, which is the natural layer that protects them. From there to the appearance of caries there is only one step.

As for outbreaks of herpes in the mouth, these can be reactivated along with bad breath (or halitosis) in a situation of increased stress, such as having to take an exam or overcome a job challenge. While herpes disappears in a short time and bad breath does not seem serious but rather annoying, it may indicate the presence of some disease in the gums that weakens the teeth. That is why it is important to control it and check that it does not present with other symptoms such as bitter taste in the mouth and redness of the gums (which should always look pale pink).

Finally, stress is the main cause of what is called bruxism, which in a few words means clenching teeth or make them grind without realizing it, especially at night. The constant pressure on the teeth causes them to wear out and weaken, and if not corrected in time, they may break (break) or fall later. The treatment for this condition is usually the use of a plate that is used during the night. If it happens to you, do not forget to consult with your dentist, who can indicate the appropriate treatment.

Also, do not forget to follow some simple oral hygiene habits that can help you keep your teeth and gums healthy longer. The main ones are:

  • Brush your teeth every day, at least twice and always before going to bed.
  • It is also recommended to brush your tongue to keep your breath fresh, but not your gums.
  • Use thread or floss at least once a day.
  • Limit the sugary foods you eat, especially between meals. Do not smoke or chew tobacco.
  • Check the inside of your mouth often to see if you have sores that do not heal, irritation of the gums or other changes.
  • Visit the dentist regularly, at least once a year, for check-ups and cleanings.
  • And now you can add to this, a more calm and relaxed life, without tensions and stress, which can put at risk your overall health, both physical and emotional. There are several ways to combat stress, if you realize that you cannot handle the situation, it is best to take the plunge and ask for professional help. With an adequate treatment you can live longer and better.