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12 Jul

The Most Common Dental Problems You Can Have If You Suffer From Anxiety Or Stress

Most people tend to deal with some degree of stress or anxiety on a day-to-day basis. However, we are aware that this stressful time has brought growing health concerns, economic pressures, and uncertainties for us all. These factors combined are likely to result in higher levels of stress and anxiety. In addition to affecting your mental health, stress can also affect your oral health!

Today’s blog will focus on the dental problems you may experience, if you suffer from anxiety or stress. 

1- Teeth Grinding or Clenching 

Teeth grinding and jaw clenching are symptoms associated with a condition also known as bruxism. Often, people are unaware that they are grinding their teeth, as most of the activity usually takes place in your sleep. If you are noticing signs of chips, flattened tips or sharp edges, you may be suffering from bruxism. It is important the condition is diagnosed on time, and you take steps to prevent any further damage to your tooth enamel. Maida Smiles Dental Clinic offers several solutions for patients suffering from bruxism, including custom-fitted night-guards you can wear whilst you sleep, and even a Botox treatment to help relax your jaw.

For more information on how Botox can ease this dental problem click here

2- Gum Disease 

It is no secret that stress can have a detrimental effect to our immune system. This impairs our body’s ability to fight infections and can lead to a cycle of gum disease in patients predisposed to the condition. Once your gums get inflamed, harmful bacteria enters the bloodstream and can lead to even further harm for your overall health. In cases of severe gum disease, the bacteria that is present on the inside edges of the teeth begins to penetrate below the gum. When this happens, the bacteria cause irritation and infection, which unless treated, can spread throughout the soft tissue of the mouth, and even eventually penetrate the jawbone. At this stage of the disease, tooth loss is almost guaranteed. As a rule of thumb, once your gums get inflamed, harmful bacteria is likely to enter the bloodstream and lead to even further harm. Some of the symptoms of dental problems related to gums include: 

  • Swollen or puffy gums.
  • Bright red, dusky red or purplish gums.
  • Gums that feel tender when touched.
  • Gums that bleed easily.
  • Pink-tinged toothbrush after brushing.
  • Spitting out blood when brushing or flossing your teeth.
  • Bad breath.
  • Pus between your teeth and gums.

If you notice one of the symptoms above, please contact us as soon as possible and we will be sure to book your dental examination right away.

3- TMD and TMJ 

Temporomandibular disorders (TMD) are common conditions that affect jaw muscles and joints. Patients suffering from TMD experience popping noises and clicking of their jaw, as well as regular unexplained headaches and pressure around the temporomandibular joints, the joints in front of your ears (TMJ). In the more progressive stages of the condition, some patients report trouble opening and closing their jaw, as well as eating. 

 Under abnormal amounts of pressure, our muscles tend to feel sore and get inflamed. Furthermore, stress provoked by the Coronavirus can also lead to the tightening muscles of our neck, face and jaw. 

4- Dry mouth

Dry mouth, also known as Xerostomia is the sensation of oral dryness. Dry mouth is a common, complex, and under-recognized condition, and it is typically associated with a reduced saliva flow. Human saliva is a mixture of fluids that has several essential roles in our everyday lives. These include cleansing the oral cavity, facilitating speech and swallowing, protecting oral tissues (including teeth) against physical and microbial insults, and maintaining a neutral pH. Patients with a reduced salivary flow report difficulties in tasting, chewing, swallowing and speaking. The severity of this particular dental problem of Xerostomia can range from mild oral discomfort to significant oral disease that can compromise a patient’s health, dietary intake, and quality of life. Some more symptoms include:

  • a sticky, dry, or burning feeling in the mouth.
  • trouble chewing, swallowing, tasting, or speaking.
  • altered taste or intolerance for spicy, salty, or sour foods or drinks.
  • a dry or sore throat.
  • cracked, peeling, or atrophic lips.
  • a dry, rough tongue.
  • mouth sores.
  • an infection in the mouth (e.g., oral candidiasis)

Any of us can go through a period of poor mental health and dental problems are a reoccurring issue in people, who endure high levels of stress. Everyone experiences anxiety and fear at times – these are normal and helpful human emotions that help us deal with danger. However, if you feel that you or someone you know is experiencing excessive and irrational anxiety and worries that become ongoing and distressing, we strongly encourage you to share your concerns with us during your next dental visit. 

If you suspect you may be suffering from any of the aforementioned conditions, please do not wait to book your dental examination at 020 3583 9809