How Stress Harms Smile Aesthetics

You might notice that if you experience chronically high stress, the strain can take its toll on your health. It will impact your oral health as well, and it can encourage certain habits and behaviors that may lead to cosmetic dental damage.

If your smile no longer appears the way you want it to, you could experience a major blow to your confidence. This can increase your stress levels even more. But if you maintain awareness of how stress can impact your smile aesthetics, you can avoid these concerns related to your smile’s appearance. So read on to learn three ways that high stress levels may prove detrimental to your oral health.

How Stress Harms Smile Aesthetics

Overconsuming Beverages That Stain Teeth

Stress can disrupt your sleep schedule. If you wake up feeling groggy and not well-rested, you may turn to a caffeinated beverage like tea or coffee for an energy boost to power you through your daily schedule.

However, coffee and tea feature substances called tannins that give these beverages their dark color. When you drink them, tannins will transfer and absorb into your tooth enamel, leaving dark stains behind on your teeth. You cannot get rid of this dental discoloration with your usual oral hygiene routine.

You can reduce your chances of forming these dental stains by sipping through a straw or diluting your beverage with milk. But these efforts will not eliminate the danger entirely.

Pay attention to your smile to ensure you do not stain your teeth with the beverages that you consume. If you do see discoloration in your smile, ask your dentist about teeth whitening treatments that can enhance your tooth color.

Grinding Your Teeth

Stress will put strain on your entire body that can manifest into habits you might not always be aware of. For instance, stress-induced strain can initiate or exacerbate a habit of grinding or clenching your teeth, also called bruxism.  

When you grate your teeth against one another, it generates pressure that could hurt your teeth and jaw. But this behavior may also cause your teeth to chip and crack. This tooth breakage could disrupt the appearance of your smile.

Your dentist can amend minor tooth breakage with dental bonding or other cosmetic treatments. But ideally, you should preserve your natural dental structure by preventing this damage in the first place. This means finding stress relief and other methods of stopping harmful bruxism.

Neglecting Oral Health Care

If you feel stressed and overwhelmed, you may feel tempted to skip certain routines in order to relieve some of this excess pressure. But you should not miss out on crucial everyday oral health care.

Your daily oral hygiene regimen removes plaque and other build-up from your teeth. These residues will otherwise contribute to surface stains, cavities, and other dental issues. So make sure you brush your teeth at least twice a day, floss daily, and attend regular dental cleanings at your dentist’s office. These efforts ensure you keep your smile looking and feeling its best for as long as possible.