Stress Undermines a Healthy Smile

frustrated-child (1)Stress not only affects your body, but also your mouth, teeth, and gums! Stress is easy to come by, and can often be overwhelming. Stress weakens the immune system, which negatively impacts your body’s capability to fight against the bacteria that causes many oral health problems, including periodontal disease. Stressing out can result in mouth sores, teeth grinding, nail biting, poor health care habits, and developing a bad diet.

Stress can affect anyone, even your child. Common worries ,including separation anxiety, academic pressure, world events, natural disasters, family worries, and social pressures can prompt stress in children. These troubles can provoke a physical response in children that can negatively impact their oral health. Stress is often revealed in a child by a change in behavior.

Recognizing the signs of stress can help improve your child’s oral health and well-being:

Mouth Sores

Stress, along with fatigue, can increase the chance of having canker sores. Canker sores are small ulcers that emerge inside the mouth. Emotional distress can trigger cold sores and last for up to 10 days!

Teeth Grinding

Stress may initiate bruxism. Bruxism can lead to problems with the temporomandibular joint (TMJ). Night guards are commonly recommended to minimize teeth grinding.

Change in Diet

Unhealthy eating habits, including snacking, and a desire for sugary foods or drinks is often induced by stress. This can lead to tooth decay and tooth loss. Remember that nutrition is also related to your oral health!

Developing Poor Dental Habits

Stress may affect moods and lead to skipping essential dental habits, including brushing, flossing, and rinsing.

Gum Disease

Even a brief period of stress can result in the risk of gingivitis and an accumulation of dental plaque.

Stress can be controlled with practical strategies to overcome the challenges that arise from daily life. Your child’s overall health depends on their oral health! Encourage a balance in your child’s schedule and reiterate the importance of sleep and a healthy diet.


Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or to set up an appointment and consultation.


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