You may be familiar with the factors that contribute to gum disease—poor oral hygiene, tobacco use, or medications—but did you know stress can be as well? Stress can wreak havoc on our bodily health if not handled properly, and our oral health is no different. Stress can contribute to hormonal imbalances, making it harder for our bodies to function properly.
The way stress factors into oral health is simple. When we become stressed, our bodies have a more difficult time making the right hormones at the right time. Typically, the body releases immune cells to fight bacteria in the mouth, but under stress, your body has a more difficult time doing this when it needs to. When the immune cells are not fighting the bacteria in your mouth, the bacteria are left to freely do what it wants to do, which is irritating and infecting the gums and teeth.
Since the bacteria is not being controlled by immune cells, a person under high stress can develop gum disease like gingivitis more easily. What’s worse is that if someone is already suffering from gum disease, stress can exacerbate the problem further.
Ways To Prevent Stress
Since stress can be such a large factor when it comes to gum health, it’s important to control it as much as possible. We understand days can get hectic—especially if you have children. However, taking some time to de-stress will be beneficial not only to your body’s health, it’ll also be beneficial to your oral health. We recommend regular exercise to de-stress. It has been proven that even light exercising can help remove the stress of the day, so going out for a walk is the perfect way to calm down.
If you have any more question about gum disease or the effects of stress, give us a call. We’ll be happy to talk with you about any concerns you may have. We can even give you some more tips on how to deal with stress in your life.