Stress is the body’s reaction to mental, physical, or emotional occurrences. Some stress is considered to be good stress – planning a special event, for example. Yet, many people experience stress when situations are out of their control, or they are under a great amount of pressure. The human body needs to release stress somehow, and there are various ways in which it does so. Exercise is a great way for people to relieve stress because it can help clear the mind while also releasing endorphins to boost confidence. However, people often experience negative outcomes of stress because their bodies are not finding the relief they need.
Teeth grinding is a huge indicator of a person’s stress level. Teeth grinding, also known as bruxism, is an involuntary response to stress. Most often, it happens at night while a person is sleeping, but some people catch themselves grinding their teeth during the day during stressful situations. According to the Bruxism Association, stress levels are the strongest predictor of teeth grinding, connected to 70% of cases.
2020 has been the most stressful year in modern history for people across the United States, as well as the world. With many dental practices now open for full service, dentists report that numerous dental patients are presenting signs of teeth grinding.
Tooth enamel is the hardest substance inside the human body. It protects the inner layers of the teeth, which contain roots, bloodlines, and nerve endings. While tooth enamel is incredibly hard, it is not invincible. Bruxism puts an enormous amount of stress on the teeth, and if people are grinding their teeth at night, they are damaging the tooth enamel. If bruxism is not treated, it can wear down the enamel so far that the inner layers of the teeth are exposed. This can lead to irreversible damage that will require extensive, and expensive, repair.
If you have noticed changes in your teeth or that stress is causing you to grind your teeth, please contact Smile Structure today. We want to help protect your greatest accessory – your smile!
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