Sunday, December 4, 2022

Does Stress Cause Dry Mouth

Teeth Grinding During Sleep

Can Anxiety Cause Dry Mouth? …And how to fix it (Anxiety and Dry Mouth)

Teeth grinding during sleep is not only annoying our partners, its dangerous to our health as well. When under stress, our bodies are tense, so are the jaw muscles. Clenching and grinding is called bruxism and it leads to teeth and jaw damage. If this habit is not dealt with, teeth get worn out over time and the fractures and cracks are not uncommon. Here is the worst case scenario: patients can also develop a syndrome called TMD which causes a chronic jaw pain, headaches, ear pain and reduced jaw mobility. There are many ways to prevent TMD. Some of them are avoiding chewing gum, resting your jaw as much as you can, eating softer foods and paying attention to your posture.

Physical Symptoms You Didnt Know Were Caused By Stress

The way we’re feeling inside has a bigger physical impact than you’d think.

The word ‘stressful’ is commonly used these days as a throwaway term to describe any kind of less-than-ideal set of circumstances. But stress – real, serious stress that can be caused by anything from moving house to starting a new job, or becoming a first-time parent – can actually impact a person in a big way. And that includes physically.

With a Guardiansurvey carried out for Mental Health Awareness week revealing that three in four Britons have been so stressed that they have felt overwhelmed or unable to cope on at least one occasion in the last year, we wanted to look into the physical manifestations this kind of stress can have on a person.

We asked Nuffield Health’s Brendan Street, who’s Professional Head of CBT , to talk us through all the ways stress can turn into physical symptoms, because once you can identify stress, you can actually do something about it:

1. Feeling tired

“Stress has a physiological effect on your body by releasing hormones into your bloodstream which accelerate your heart rate and your breathing. This constant strain on your system can have an exhausting effect, leaving you feeling tired all the time.

2. Teeth grinding

3. Headaches

4. Dizziness

5. Irritable bowels

6. Loss of libido

7. Appetite loss or gain

8. Hair loss

  • The hormones released by the body in the stress response can cause hair loss.
  • 9. Getting sick easily

    10. Increased heart rate

    11. Dry mouth

    The Benefits Of Saliva

    According to, other benefits of saliva include:

    • Keeping your mouth moist and comfortable
    • Helping;to;chew, taste, and swallow
    • Fighting germs in your mouth and preventing bad breath
    • Provides;proteins and minerals that protect tooth enamel and prevents tooth decay;and gum disease
    • Helps keep;dentures;securely in place

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    How Is It Treated

    Home treatment may help relieve symptoms of a dry mouth.

    • Take frequent sips of liquid throughout the day.

      Water is best.

    • Use ice chips and sugar-free items.

      Items such as sugar-free gum or candy will help keep your mouth moist without promoting tooth decay.

    • Eat and drink tart foods and liquids.

      Tart food and liquids such as sugar-free lemonade, sugar-free sour candies, or dill pickles can help stimulate the flow of saliva.

    • Add extra liquid to foods to make them easier to chew and swallow.
    • Drink water with meals.
    • Use nonprescription saliva substitutes that you can buy at a pharmacy.

    What You Can Do About Dry Mouth Anxiety

    Medications That Cause Dry Mouth

    Just like there are several reasons for dry mouth, there are several things you can do to help with it. These may not all work for everyone, but one or more should bring you relief.

    • Drink more water. This seems simple on the surface, but most Americans dont drink enough water whether they have anxiety or not. We need six to eight glasses of water every day. Drinking enough all the time will help with the feeling of dry mouth when youre anxious.
    • Good mouth hygiene. Brushing your teeth regularly and going to the dentist twice a year for check-ups are both important. If you have dry mouth from anxiety, this is a way to prevent any damage being done.
    • Chew or suck on something. Something good for you, hopefully. This will keep the saliva flowing in your mouth.
    • Breathe through your nose. Anxiety pushes us to mouth breathe, drying it out.

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    Gerd Anxiety And Other Diseases

    It’s important to note that trouble swallowing may be a sign of other disorders, such as gastroesophageal reflux disease . While these disorders don’t cause anxiety on their own, those with anxiety often find that these disorders contribute to their existing anxiety, sometimes making it worse.;

    That’s why it’s important that you really understand what symptoms you have that could be attributed to anxiety; and how you can respond to them. At times, it may be necessary to consult with a doctor in order to rule out possible medical conditions that are underlying your symptoms.;

    How To Stop The Sensation Of A Dry Mouth

    The difficulty in dealing with dry mouth depends primarily on the cause. Dry mouth caused by medication may reqiure a different dose, a different medication, or a different type of medication that can be provided by your doctor or dentist. There are both prescription and non-prescription treatments and washes that increase salivary production.;

    If you are not currently taking any medication and doctors have ruled out any other causes of dry mouth, its possible that anxiety is solely to blame. In that case, first simply try drinking water and chewing gum – two small behaviors that moisten the mouth. Although this may not treat all anxiety related dry mouth, some people find that the increase in saliva and cool feeling of water against the tongue can be mentally refreshing.;

    If the cause of your dry mouth appears to be anxiety, and is not related to the medications you are taking to cure it, then the next step is to work on anxiety reduction strategies. For example:

    Although medications can also be effective, those that struggle with anxiety related dry mouth will want to talk about their distress with their doctor, to ensure that anything you take for your anxiety wont affect your symptoms.


    Dry mouth may be the result of mouth breathing, acid reflux, medications, and several other anxiety-related issues. Identifying the cause is important. Eliminating dry mouth from anxiety typically requires ;commitment to long term anxiety reduction.;

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    What Are Some Home Remedies For Dry Mouth

    There are several self-care strategies for relieving dry mouth. Finding the dry mouth remedy that works for you may take some trial and error. Here are several tips for coping with dry mouth:

    • Avoid alcohol, caffeine, tobacco, antihistamines and decongestants.

    • Chew sugarless gum or suck on sugar-free candy to stimulate saliva production.

    • Drink water throughout the day or suck on ice chips if that works better for you. When chewing is difficult due to dry mouth, take sips of water as you eat.

    • Humidify the air in your home, especially at night when you are sleeping. Using nasal strips while you sleep can also help by reducing and mouth breathing.

    • Lubricate your lips to avoid cracking and peeling.

    • Moisten food with sauces, gravies, broth or butter. Avoid dry foods if possible.

    • Practice good oral hygiene by flossing daily, brushing your teeth twice a day and after meals, and seeing your dentist twice a year. Avoid alcohol-based mouthwashes and ask your doctor about toothpastes that can help dry mouth.

    Stress Can Affect Your Gums

    Does Pantoprazole cause dry mouth, gas or constipation

    If you wondered why we dont react well to long-term stress hormone called cortisol is the key. This hormone is released in response to stress and the higher levels of it can weaken the immune system. Lots of conditions can occur due to a weak immune system and periodontal disease is just one of them. Symptoms include bleeding, swollen and painful gums, bad breath, and in the end loose teeth. So what are the best ways to fight gum infection? Taking enough vitamin C will help maintain healthy gums and boost the immune system.

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    The Physical Impacts Of Stress On Your Oral Health

    Absent the impact stress has on the immune system, chronic stress often causes involuntary teeth grinding and clenching . Because this often happens during the sleep cycle, you may not even be aware that you are doing it. Prolonged grinding can wear down teeth, damage the enamel, and cause headaches.

    Whether through grinding or other stress-induced tightening of the facial and jaw muscles, stress can also lead to severe pain and discomfort to the jaw and surrounding area in what is known as temporomandibular joint disorder . Along with the pain, TMD can cause various jaw malfunctions that can cause problems with chewing, talking, or any actions that rely on opening and closing of the mouth.

    Stress can also cause dry mouth, both as a side effect and due to side effects from stress relieving medications. Dry mouth inhibits the natural production of saliva, which is your mouths primary defense against bacteria. Thus, any stress-caused reduction in saliva means an increased risk of tooth decay, periodontal disease and oral infections.

    Common Descriptions Of The Dry Mouth Anxiety Symptom Include:

    • Your mouth feels unusually dry.
    • Youve noticed you dont have as much saliva as you normally would.
    • You find it hard to swallow because of a lack of saliva.
    • Your tongue feels dry or sticky.
    • Youve been diagnosed with xerostomia or reduced salivation.
    • You are suddenly having problems with bad breath.
    • You are having difficulty chewing, speaking, and swallowing.
    • Your tongue suddenly looks grooved.
    • Youve experienced a sudden change in taste.
    • You are suddenly having problems wearing your dentures.
    • You notice that your lipstick is sticking to your teeth.
    • You have difficulty chewing and swallowing food due to a lack of saliva.
    • You have so little saliva that you cant even spit.

    Dry mouth can occur rarely, frequently, or persist 24/7 day after day.

    It can precede, accompany, or follow an escalation of other anxiety symptoms or occur by itself.

    The dry mouth anxiety symptom can precede, accompany, or follow an episode of nervousness, anxiety, and stress or occur “out of the blue” for no apparent reason.

    Dry mouth can range in intensity from slight, to moderate, to severe.

    This symptom can change from day to day, moment to moment, or remain as a constant backdrop to your struggle with anxiety disorder.

    All of the above combinations and variations are common.

    To see if anxiety might be playing a role in your symptoms, rate your level of anxiety using our free one-minute instant results Anxiety Test, Anxiety Disorder Test, or Hyperstimulation Test.

    Medical Advisory

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    How Can You Help Prevent Dry Mouth

    A dry mouth is common and can often be prevented. Try some of the following prevention measures.

    • Drink plenty of water.
    • Use a humidifier in your home, especially in the bedroom.
    • Breathe through your nose rather than through your mouth.
    • Do not take medicines that cause a dry mouth.

      These include diuretics, antihistamines, and decongestants. Your doctor can help you find a different medicine.

    • Avoid caffeinated beverages, tobacco, and alcohol.

      These can increase dryness in your mouth.

    How Anxiety Causes Dry Mouth And What To Do

    Understand the Causes and Treatments for Dry Mouth ...
    • Dry mouth is frequently reported as a symptom of anxiety.
    • There are at least 5 possible causes of anxiety dry mouth, possibly more.
    • For many, the sensation of dry mouth is also the result of heightened awareness.
    • Small tricks can reduce the feeling of a dry mouth.
    • See a dentist for additional dry mouth checkups, and reduce anxiety to decrease the frequency of dry mouth-like anxiety symptoms.

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    What Is Salivary Flow Rate

    Unstimulated salivary flow rate is ;the volume of saliva secreted by the major and minor salivary glands in a minute without any stimulation. The normal range of unstimulated and stimulated salivary flow rates are 0.30.5 and 0.50.7 mL/min, respectively. Thus, any persons with salivary secretion amounts less than this is will complain of dry mouth.

    Dry Mouth Causes Bad Breath And Cavities

    Dry mouth can be caused by numerous factors, some more and less easy to fix. The cause of dryness is that the salivary glands dont make enough saliva to keep your mouth wet. This can be a side effect of certain medications, or caused by the conditions such as diabetes and yeast infection. However, stress and anxiety are to blame in most cases of dry mouth. As saliva removes plaque and cleans the mouth, the lack of it makes bacteria removal a much harder task. Drinking more water at regular intervals can help. Use mouthwash and speak to your doctor about prescribing you medications that stimulate saliva production.

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    Does Stress Affect My Oral Health

    Stress impacts the entire body. But many people fail to recognize the impact stress can have on their oral health. How does stress affect my oral health? Since the impacts of stress on the body and mouth arent obvious, regular dental exams and cleanings remain vital to finding these effects of stress and treating them. Whether caused by stress or not, helping people with dental issues is part of what we do at Matthews Family Dentistry.

    Treatment For Chronic Dry Mouth

    What is dry mouth and will it cause problems with my teeth and health?

    If dry mouth becomes a chronic problem , give us a call to discuss the potential of your medications causing dry mouth and other factors that might be affecting saliva production. This is a common problem, so we have discussions with many patients to find the root cause of their dry mouth and solutions. I can recommend some pharmaceutical products that may help. Many of these are sold over the counter.

    You may want to read this previous blog for more insight . Both I and my hygienist will be happy to discuss this with you.

    ~ Dr. Jamie J. Alexander, Your Boynton Beach Dentist

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    Treatments For Mouth Sores

    Aside from conventional remedies, you can also look to natural or herbal products. This includes balms and ointments, as well as herbal teas.

    If you are interested in preventing mouth sores, then you may also be interested in teas and other remedies that help alleviate stress. As may be suspected, if you suspect immune system issues, then you can also look for herbal therapies that address them.

    If you are skeptical of working with herbal remedies, you may want to lean more toward working with meditation and hypnosis. While these methods tend to be highly unconventional, they have a notable track record for helping people manage stress effectively.

    Inclusion And Exclusion Criteria

    A total of 247 patients referring to Zanjan Dental School were selected randomly and, after signing an informed consent form, were included in this study. Then a questionnaire on demographic data as well as dental and medical history was submitted to the participants.

    Individuals under 18 years of age, those with a positive history of systemic disease and those taking any medications or smoking were excluded.

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    It Is Not Uncommon To Experience Dry Mouth As You Age But It Is Not Directly Caused By Age Itself It Has Many Possible Causes Including Age

    You are even at higher risk to develop dry mouth if you breathe too often through your mouth rather than your nose!

    Despite being uncomfortable, dry mouth alone is not a severe issue as long as it is not persistent. If it is, it can lead to various long-term health issues, ranging from irritating to dangerous. Someone who suffers from chronic dry mouth will likely experience mouth sores, splits at the corners of the mouth, cracked lips, increased plaque buildup & a greater risk of tooth decay & gum disease. You might even start to have nutrition issues, because the lack of saliva makes it more difficult to break down food when you eat.

    You May Be Grinding Your Teeth In Your Sleep

    Dry Mouth Difficulty Swallowing Anxiety

    Nighttime bruxism is actually one of the most common stress-related oral health issues. Unfortunately, the more stressed you are, the more severe your bruxism can be. This is because clenching and grinding your teeth reduces stress hormones as you sleep the same way that shouting might relieve stress while youre awake. However, if you grind your teeth in your sleep, you may be wearing down your dental enamel, causing a number of oral health issues down the road. It can also cause headaches, facial pain, and even cracked teeth.

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    What Specialists Treat Dry Mouth

    The type of doctor who should treat dry mouth depends on the cause. A person noticing symptoms of dry mouth should first consult with their dentist for a consult and exam. A general dentist will do a review of medications, health history, lifestyle, diet, and other things that could contribute to dry mouth. They will then perform an intraoral examination to confirm diminished salivary flow and to determine the effects it has had on the dentition and oral tissues. The management and maintenance of oral health will be the most important element of this relationship.

    If it is determined that there is salivary gland dysfunction, the dentist may partner with an ENT physician who specializes in salivary gland disorders to help improve the condition.

    How Long Can Dry Mouth Last

    Dry mouth can last as long as the cause is unresolved. If your dry mouth is caused by anxiety or anxiety-caused stomach problems, such as GERD or acid reflux, it can last until they have been addressed. Many anxious people have chronic digestive and dry mouth symptoms.

    Return to our anxiety disorders signs and symptoms page. Information, support, and therapy for anxiety disorder and its symptoms, including Dry Mouth And Anxiety.

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