It's no secret that stress can take its toll on your health.
But a Newcastle dentist has warned of a less commonly known side effect - the damage it could be doing to your teeth.
Last month Hollywood star Demi Moore admitted losing two pearly whites due to anxiety.
And Dr Rob Wain, of Newcastle-based Dovetail Bespoke Dental Solutions, says the star’s story is more common than people might think.
The expert has revealed how he sees signs of stress-related teeth problems “every single day”, and warned about the worryingly common signs your hectic life is taking its toll on your teeth.
Dr Wain, who has a clinic on Blandford Square, said: “Because of the nature of our clinic, I see symptoms associated with stress on a daily basis. I see people who have destroyed their teeth.
“When things go wrong, grinding is often the underlying cause of it.”
Excessive teeth grinding or clenching of the jaw is called bruxism, and in many cases people are unaware they are doing it.
It can often happen during the night or at times of stress or concentration.
Dr Wain said: “Most people grind their teeth at some point in their lives. The question is, do they do it to the extent where it becomes harmful?” If left unchecked, bruxism can wear your teeth down over time, and also lead to sensitivity and even broken teeth.
Grinding is also associated with headaches, jaw pain, and facial aches. Dr Wain explained: “People might not necessarily be aware they are grinding or clenching but may notice their teeth feeling ever so slightly loose, or they might be getting broken sleep. They also might experience headaches, or pain in their jaw when they wake up. If this excessive grinding goes on for a long time, teeth may eventually start to wear down and people might get wear facets on the teeth.
“Over time teeth can become shorter, and the enamel can start to flake.”
Dr Wain advises prevention is always better than cure, and people should see their dentist if they recognise any of the symptoms associated with bruxism.
“If caught early, there are things we can do such as making night guards to protect the teeth against excessive grinding, or we can recommended exercises to relax the muscles in the jaw.
“Certainly, it’s important to see your dentist if your teeth appear worn or feel sensitive.”
If you are concerned about the health of your teeth, our Private Dentist in Liverpool can help you make the most of your smile. Fromm teeth guards to tooth whitening our aim is to give you the best smile possible. You can register with our Private Dentist in Liverpool or contact us to make an appointment and we will be happy to discuss the best options for you.