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Stress Endangers Your Gum Health

Have you been feeling overwhelmed lately? High stress levels can take their toll throughout your body, increasing your risk of many medical issues. But increased stress can also harm your gums in particular.

This connective tissue keeping your teeth in place in the mouth can be prone to infections. And advanced gum disease may cause significant oral health problems, including tooth loss

So you should not ignore potential issues in your gums, which means addressing risk factors like stress. Read on to learn about three issues that stem from stress and can put your gums in serious danger.

Stress Endangers Your Gum Health

Weakened Immune System

When you feel stressed, your body produces a hormone called cortisol which gives your immune system a boost and reduces inflammation throughout the body. But if stress endures for a long period of time, your body adjusts to the resulting cortisol so that your immune system no longer responds as it should to germs or bacteria.

As a result, you could have a higher chance of contracting an infection, including an oral one like gum disease. And with a weakened immune system due to stress, you could face more adverse effects from that infection of the gum tissue.  

You could see more irritation and inflammation in the gums, as well as bleeding, swelling, and soreness. Gum disease requires treatment from a dentist to eradicate, even with a strong immune system. So do not delay seeking periodontal therapy if you notice concerns with your gums.

Neglected Oral Hygiene

Higher amounts of stress might mean you feel overwhelmed and therefore tempted to skip some usual routines to alleviate some stress. You might not brush your teeth or floss as often as you should. But this oral hygiene regimen removes excess plaque and bacteria that naturally collect in your mouth.

Neglecting or skipping this routine means bacteria can stay on your smile and spread to your gums. And you will have a greater chance of gum disease. But the discomfort of this infection and the necessary dental work to treat it will actually increase your stress. So avoid the infection in the first place by adhering to a proper oral hygiene routine.

Dry Mouth

Stress can affect your body’s functions in multiple ways, including suspending digestion. This will mean that your mouth will produce less saliva, leaving you with a sticky, dry, and uncomfortable sensation. Dry mouth feels unpleasant, but it is also a risk factor for gum disease.

With less moisture in your mouth, natural oral bacteria can travel with greater ease. Then they can easily reach your gums and infect them. Drink plenty of water to combat dry mouth.

But you should also address the root of the problem, your stress levels, to protect your gum health. Do not delay stress relief and oral health care or you could see serious harm in your gums. Learn more about preventative periodontal care by giving your Charlotte, NC dentist a call at 704.486.8911.