The human mind likes to categorise things and put them into different boxes. We have minds and bodies, arms and legs, fingers and hands.
However, if you look at what you are from the standpoint of nature, there is no separation. Everything is the same flow of energy, acting in unison. Nature has no idea that your intellect is dividing one part of the body from another. From its perspective, they are all the same.
That’s why teeth and mental health are connected. What goes on in your mouth is just a couple of inches away from what happens in your brain, and it can affect it profoundly.
Painful Teeth Can Cause Changes In Your Emotional State
According to research, around two-thirds of people with depression also report having toothaches and around half said that tooth pain was a reason for them feeling low.
Interestingly, researchers have found evidence to suggest that gum disease and disordered moods are linked to each other. People with serious periodontal disease, for instance, are much more likely to experience emotions such as anxiety, stress and loneliness.
Excessive focus on oral health issues can also create problems. Higher stress levels manifest as cortisol levels in the body. And when these are elevated, it weakens the immune system, leading to more inflammation, causing the cycle to repeat, over and over again.
In addition, many of the medications prescribed for depression lead to dry mouth which, in turn, can worsen existing infections.
Crooked Teeth Can Sap Your Confidence
To live your best life, you need a sense of confidence guiding you along. It reminds you that no matter how bad things get, things will always be okay in the end.
But if you lack confidence because you have crooked teeth, you can never get to the promised land.
This is one of the reasons why many people are so keen on invisible aligners. See-through, removable braces let them straighten their teeth in just a few months so that they feel liberated to show off their smile.
Gum Disease Puts Your Brain At Risk
The idea that disease in the mouth could put your brain at risk seems unlikely at first. After all, even if there are bacteria lurking in your gums, it is hard for them to get into the brain, one of the most protected organs in the body.
However, the effect of gum disease is often indirect. Bacteria doesn’t cross the blood-brain barrier, but they don’t have to to start causing damage. Instead, they work by raising your blood sugar and inflammation levels, causing your brain to go into panic mode. This then increases its stress-response pathways, leading to many of the common mental health problems we experience on a regular basis.
The trick here is to get rid of the infection at the source. In the case of periodontal disease, you’ll first need to go on antibiotics, and then, depending on the severity of the infection, get nearby teeth removed and replaced with implants. The result? Less anxiety and low mood.
Overall oral health will have a huge impact on your mental wellbeing. Thanks for reading.