April is Stress Awareness Month. You know stress affects your mental state, but it affects your physical state too – including your mouth. Awareness is the first step in preventing stress-related problems. We’re sharing here some specific tips to keep stress from harming your smile.
If you need to make an appointment to visit one of our dentists or have questions, call Houston Uptown Dentists at 832-463-1021. In the meantime, check out our suggestions.
- Keep Brushing and Flossing – Self-care can suffer when you are stressed. That may include brushing and flossing. However, you need to do your best to brush twice daily and floss at least once. If not, you’ll be more prone to cavities and other issues. Without timely treatment, they can result in more serious – and stressful – problems up to and including tooth loss. If you’ve been neglecting your oral hygiene, schedule an exam and cleaning. We’ll get your mouth healthy again!
- Don’t Ignore Gum Health – Gum health is critical. Diseased gums can not only cause dental problems, but overall health issues too. That’s because bacteria can enter your bloodstream through infected gums. If you’re experiencing gum sensitivity or bleeding, call us ASAP. Early treatment keeps the disease from progressing to that serious stage. If disease has caused your gums to recede, we are one of relatively few dentists to offer the Chao Pinhole® Surgical Technique, a much less stressful alternative to a gum graft.
- Stop Teeth Grinding With a Mouthguard – You may have a stress-related habit you aren’t even aware of, as it often happens during sleep. If you wake up with headaches or a sore jaw, you may be grinding your teeth during the night. This can damage your teeth and cause TMJ troubles. Fortunately, we can fit you for a custom-made mouthguard that will stop the harmful activity.
- Drink Plenty of Water – Stress can dry out your mouth. That’s a problem because a dry mouth makes your mouth more friendly to harmful bacteria. Try to increase your water intake. You can also chew sugar-free gum or suck on sugar-free mints to keep saliva flowing. If you pick products with xylitol, you’ll enjoy added protection against decay.
- Find Strategies to Lessen Stress – The best way to stop these problems is to find strategies for coping with your stress. This short video has some great ideas.