Everyone suffers from stress occasionally but it can negatively affect your oral health. Common issues include mouth ulcers and problems with clenching and grinding. Lowering your stress levels will help, but in the meantime here are a few tips for coping with any oral health problems.
Mouth ulcers can be tricky to treat as no-one is really sure what causes them. An outbreak could be due to a lowered immune system, so being under stress does make you more vulnerable. Some people find it helpful to avoid very spicy or hot foods, or foods that are acidic such as fruits and tomatoes. You can buy over-the-counter medicines that will have a numbing effect on the sores, or we may be able to prescribe you something to ease the discomfort. Most mouth ulcers will disappear within a week or two, but please contact us if they are failing to heal.
Grinding and Clenching
Grinding and clenching, or bruxism is a largely nocturnal habit that can be worsened by stress. It can cause considerable damage to your teeth, gums and jaw joints so please contact us if you think you may have bruxism. We can supply a custom-made night guard to prevent your teeth from contacting during sleep or help relax your jaw muscles with injectables to relieve the pressure and effect of heavy grinding.
If you are under a lot of stress, it can be easy to ignore good dental hygiene or you may eat less healthily. Try to remind yourself to brush and floss regularly. Some people find taking regular exercise can encourage better eating habits and it is great for relieving stress.