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Daily Stress Can Put a Strain on Your Smile

Posted on July 1st, 2018

You inhale deeply. Then you try to exhale slowly.

You do this a few more times, but it’s not really helping you calm down.

On the plus side, it is stopping you from firing off an irate email to your coworker saying exactly what you think of his idea …

While you think of the work appropriate words to respectfully explain what you think the idea, you also start to notice that your face hurts a little. You ignore it and take a few more deep breaths.

When you wake up the next morning with a headache and a sore jaw, you may not realize there is a connection between what happened at work and how you feel. Stress is one of the most common triggers for teeth grinding, which can lead to TMJ disorders.

Fortunately, our doctors at Atlanta West Dentistry have the training to save your teeth. We can’t take away your stress, unfortunately, but we may be able to stop it from destroying your teeth.

Call (770) 941-6979 today to set an appointment at our Marietta, GA dentist office. Don’t let stress and teeth grinding steal your smile!

The Toll of the Daily (& Nightly) Grind

You already know that stress can affect your life in a variety of ways. You may not know that it can increase your risk of grinding your teeth in your sleep. Tens of millions of Americans do this for hours every night, although many are not aware of it.

Even if they don’t know they are damaging their teeth, they may be dealing with other symptoms of their nighttime grinding:

  • Morning headaches or earaches
  • Jaw soreness or tenderness
  • Face pain
  • Stiff jaws
  • Neck and upper back pain

You already know that grinding your teeth together is not good for your oral health. The wear and tear on your enamel can increase your risk of tooth decay, cavities, and tooth infections. The added pressure on your teeth can harm your gums as well, raising your risk of periodontal disease.

Alleviating your stress will certainly help your situation, but it can take time to find the right way to ease your tension. In the meantime, we want to help you protect your teeth and your smile, and prevent the painful consequences of grinding your teeth together.

Keeping Them Apart

Preventing problems is the best way to deal with them. To treat teeth grinding, it’s a great idea to keep your top and bottom row of teeth from touching one another.

Mouthguards are often the first step in stopping grinding. These are different from the mouthguards you wear for sports. Nighttime guards are custom-fitted for you, and they have two purposes. First, they act as a physical barrier between your rows of teeth. Second, they slightly alter the position of your jaw into a more relaxed position. This can ease the stress on your jaw and surrounding tissues that lead to headaches, earaches, jaw pains, and other problems.

You also may want to learn about bite adjustment and muscle relaxation treatments. These services can help address anatomical issues that can make some people more likely to be habitual teeth grinders.

Ready to Feel Better?

If you suspect stress and tension could be causing you to clench or grind your teeth, don’t wait any longer to get help. If you live or work in or near Marietta, GA, Atlanta West Dentistry may have the solution you are seeking.

Call (770) 941-6979 or contact us online to schedule a consultation.