No one would disagree that stress or anxiety is no fun; no one wants to go through that. Stress is a thing in life we all go through at some point. But what adds insult to injury is the impact of stress effects on oral health.
There are many ways stress and dental health are connected. The signs are there when you know what to look for. They can also have a negative impact on each other and can get even worse if you don’t try and keep them in check.
What do stress and oral health have to do with one another? Stress and anxiety can be detected within your mouth. Anxiety is bad enough but can be worse because it can affect your oral health as well. It can cause canker sores, dry mouth, gum disease, temporomandibular joint dysfunction, also known as TMJ, or grinding, which can leave you with headaches, jaw pain, tooth pain, or dental problems
What Is Oral Anxiety?
Oral anxiety is the stress effects on oral health. Stress or anxiety can impact your oral health; when you are stressed, your immune system is compromised, and while the cause of canker sores is not proven, there is some correlation or higher likelihood between lowered immune and those nasty painful canker sores.
Signs Stress and Anxiety Are Affecting Your Oral Health
Relationship Between Stress and Oral Health?
Your immune system is compromised when going through stress, the chemicals in your body become unbalanced and harmful to you. Your sleep is often affected, which makes matters worse. Not to mention when you’re are going through a tough time, personal hygiene patterns can become erratic, and taking care of your teeth can be low on the priority list.
How Does Stress Affect Your Lymph?
Lymph nodes may swell from stress as they are a part of your immune system and work with your body to fight infection. They filter harmful substances and store white blood cells. When swollen, they can often be felt as little bumps on the side of your neck, and they can become tender or painful when chewing or turning your neck. If they become stiff or do not reduce in size after a few weeks, you should contact your doctor.
Can Stress Cause Mouth Sores?
You may be susceptible to sores in your mouth when under prolonged stress called canker sores. These are usually small round spots with a white or grey look to them, and they can cause very sharp pain. It is best to avoid very acidic or spicy food when you get them. You can also get over the counter medicine that numbs them easing the pain. They usually last between a week or two.
Can Stress Cause Gum Pain?
Yes, stress can cause painful gums from the susceptibility to canker sores, teeth grinding, and risk of gum disease. You are also at risk of hurting your gums when you are under a lot of stress or anxiety if you are a Nail-biter. Germ from your nails can lead to infections either in your mouth, body, or damage from the nails can hurt your gums, and canker sores are believed to also be caused by a damaged or weakened spot in the gum.
Burning mouth syndrome can be caused by stress. This causes pain and damage to your gums and teeth. It can feel like your mouth is burning like you just drank a really hot drink along with dry mouth and a change in taste.