Snoring, Grinding, and Depression: Do Your Teeth Tell A Tale of Holiday Woe?
For many, the holidays are the most wonderful time of the year! But, with so much to do including shopping, decorating and entertaining; the reality of the season can make the holidays season not so merry and bright. Work and school schedules change, lines at stores seem impossibly long, and the cold makes us want to stay locked inside or out on the slopes. It is also a time when many people spend extended lengths of time with family, are reminded of a loved one’s absence, and/or experience financial hardship. These things can leave a person searching for relief and ways in how to deal with Christmas stress.
You probably already know stress can wreak havoc on your body causing physical symptoms that are unpleasant. What you may not know is it can also affect your teeth, especially if you are grinding them at night. Depression can cause you to not take care of yourself as you once did. And your partner or visiting relative’s snoring could be causing you to lose valuable sleep. If any of this sounds familiar, here are some common symptoms and tips to help support you in how to deal with Christmas stress.
Snoring is a result of air not moving freely through the throat and nose during sleep. There are several causes of snoring, and just as many solutions. Some people have chosen to sleep in another room, or use earplugs, which are both great temporary solutions especially if the person who snores is a visiting relative.
Long term solutions can include weight loss, reducing alcohol and smoking consumption, changing your sleep position, opening your nasal passages, and even seeing your dentist for an anti-snoring appliance that can open your airway by adjusting your jaw and/or tongue.
Teeth grinding is typically associated with anxiety or stress, but can also be triggered by other teeth and jaw issues such as an abnormal bite. If you are waking with a sore jaw, or notice it when you eat your first meal of the day, it is likely you have been grinding your teeth. An exam with your dentist can determine if the grinding is excessive and causing wear on your teeth, and a dentist can offer solutions for treatment.
Night time mouth guards may be suggested, and if you are grinding due to stress; incorporating exercise, and relaxation strategies as part of a method in how to deal with Christmas stress are recommended. Early intervention is best to prevent irreversible tooth damage.
Depression can come and go at any time in a person’s life and can be seasonal or long-lasting. When it begins to interfere with day-to-day living, and the upkeep of life long personal care habits, it is important to talk to someone who can help. We understand life doesn’t always go perfectly, and staying on top of bi-annual dental visits may not always be a priority. We’re here to help regardless of your past behaviors, or current oral health.
We know the holidays can be extremely difficult for some people. In fact, 64% of Americans who already suffer from depression, experience increased stress and symptoms during the holidays. If you are experiencing grief or depression and are tempted to harm yourself, please get help immediately by calling the Suicide Hotline at 1-800-273-8255 (help is available 24 hours a day).
Need relief for your teeth and mouth? Perfect Teeth is here to help you this holiday season with routine, emergency or restorative dental care. Schedule your appointment today for a healthier you!