How Your Mental Health Can Impact Your Oral Health

Man struggling with mental health should see his dentist

It’s common knowledge that mental health conditions have an enormous impact on physical wellbeing. Issues like stress, depression, and anxiety are well known for causing symptoms like headaches, acne breakouts, chest pain, digestive issues, and fatigue. However, many people don’t realize that mental health conditions can also impact your teeth and gums! Read on to discover which oral health problems you may be at a higher risk of because of your mental health, and what you can do about it!

Anxiety & Depression Vs Oral Health

Studies show that mental health conditions like anxiety and depression are linked to a higher risk of oral health conditions like:

  • Tooth decay: Stress-eating or mindlessly grazing on comfort foods throughout the day provides an endless stream of fuel for cavity-causing bacteria, leading to a rise in tooth decay.
  • Gum disease: Anxiety and depression can increase cortisol levels in the body, which can lower the immune system over time. This leaves your gums more susceptible to infection and gum disease.
  • Chipped or broken teeth: Chewing on hard objects is a habit that can come about via stress, boredom, or hopelessness. Unfortunately, chewing on items like ice, pen caps, or your fingernails weakens the teeth and can easily break them.
  • Bruxism & TMJ disorder: A buildup of tension in the muscles can cause you to grind your teeth in your sleep, which is a condition called bruxism. Not only does this wear down your teeth and raise their risk of damage, but it can lead to serious issues like TMJ disorder as well.

Caring for Your Mental & Oral Health

Thankfully, there are plenty of ways you can take care of both your mental and oral health, like:

  • Get dental checkups every six months: Biannual dental checkups give your dentist a chance to spot and stop oral health issues as soon as possible, or hopefully prevent them altogether. They’ll also be happy to give you personalized recommendations on how to best care for your oral health at home in your unique situation.
  • Practice excellent oral hygiene: Keeping a regular dental hygiene routine can be a challenge with a mental health condition, but it’s essential for keeping your teeth and gums healthy. Plus, experts report that simple self-care routines can help keep your mental health in check.
  • Get the help you need: Identifying and accepting your mental health condition is the first step towards getting the care you need. Talk to your doctor if you think you may have anxiety or depression so they can help you determine the right course of action to treat it.

Mental health conditions like anxiety and depression can impact nearly every aspect of everyday life, including your oral health. Thankfully, your doctor and your dentist are here to help! They can give you the personalized care you need to keep your oral and mental health on track.

About the Practice

Tobram Dental is proud to offer the smiles of Brampton and the surrounding communities dental care that is both high-quality and affordable. They’re proud to offer the latest dental treatments featuring state-of-the-art technology and techniques. Additionally, their talented team goes above and beyond at every appointment to make sure their patients feel relaxed, comfortable, and confident. To learn more, they can be contacted via their website or at +1 905-792-7163.

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