Oral health and mental health as a matter of fact are intertwined. Poor oral health can hamper our peace of mind and likewise, mental illness can react towards oral disorders. Hence it is vital to learn how both are related in order to circumvent both and stay healthy.
However, there isn’t always a direct link between mental health and dental health. Even the side effects of poor dental hygiene have been shown in studies to harm mental illness and vice versa. This harms the physical appearance and self-esteem of those who are impacted and can deteriorate your confidence. On the other side, depression-related self-neglect can lead to poor dental hygiene, which can contribute to tooth decay. Body dysmorphia (mental health) disorders, such as bulimia nervosa (eating disorder), can cause tooth decay because stomach acid erodes teeth.
Mental health’s influence on oral health
Mental illnesses can lead to coping behaviors such as smoking, which are harmful to one’s dental health. People who suffer from mental illnesses may avoid or stop going to the dentist. People suffering from mental diseases such as anxiety and depression may participate in behaviors or have other issues that impair their oral health, such as:
- Appetite loss, which can result in poor nutrition
- Consuming excessive amounts of sweet foods or beverages
- Dental phobia, fear of going to the dentist.
- Low energy
- Daily actions such as cleaning their teeth can be difficult for them.
- Result in the usage of drug and alcohol
- Smoking causes a dry mouth.
Medication used to treat mental diseases has the potential to cause dental health problems. Lithium, which is used to treat bipolar illness, and antidepressants, which are used to treat depression, have both been linked to an increased prevalence of xerostomia, or dry mouth, and stomatitis. Antipsychotics, antidepressants, and other mood-stabilizing medicines can cause an oral bacterial infection in extreme situations.
Preventive Dentistry for Oral Health
Your mental health might be harmed by poor oral health. You might be self-conscious about your teeth, or you might find it difficult to eat or drink in public. This can cause you to avoid social situations, which can harm your health.
Here are a few things you can do to maintain your teeth and gums in good shape:
- Brush your teeth twice daily, once in the morning and once before bedtime.
- Clean between your teeth twice a day with dental floss or an interdental brush.
- Clean your tongue regularly with a scraper.
- Use a mouthwash to keep your buccal cavity clean and breathe fresh.
- Quit smoking.
- Reduce or eliminate alcohol consumption.
- Reduce your intake of sugary foods and beverages.
- See your dentist regularly.
- Consume a nutritious, well-balanced diet.
Oral and mental health are inextricably linked. Make sure you see your dentist regularly, and if you have worries about your mental health, don’t hesitate to talk to your doctor about it. Please contact us if you feel you have dental anxiety in any of its manifestations, or if you experience any of the symptoms outlined in this article. It will be treated with the same level of discretion as to any other personal or medical data. At your next visit to our office, make a note of any prescription medications you’re taking. Purexa has India’s best oral professional expert who works day and night to resolve all the queries related to oral health and to cure all of the dental problems. Our brand products are also available online which you can browse and buy through this link. All of the products are customized to target a specific oral problem and hence are extremely beneficial.
Additionally, play a part in educating people with mental illnesses about the dangers of smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, and drug use. You can effectively manage the oral health of a person suffering from mental illness by encouraging a better lifestyle, supporting them in a positive daily routine, and making them feel more comfortable with dental treatment.