Mental health is a critical issue in the United States. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), one in five American adults experiences a mental health disorder in a given year. NAMI also reports that only 41 percent of people with a mental health disorder receive treatment.
Mental health disorders can have a devastating impact on people’s lives. They can lead to problems at work or school and can cause relationships to crumble. Mental health disorders can also lead to substance abuse and even suicide.
While most people are aware of the impact that mental health disorders can have on a person’s life, what is less known is the impact of oral health on mental health. Oral health and mental health are more intertwined than most people think. Here are six ways oral health can affect your mental health.
Poor oral health can lead to depression
Depression is a severe mental illness that causes a person to feel persistently sad or empty. Depression can also lead to a loss of interest in once enjoyable activities, fatigue, difficulty concentrating, and thoughts of suicide.
One of the most severe forms of depression is Major Depressive Disorder MDD. MDD is characterized by a number of the symptoms listed above, a change in weight or appetite, insomnia or hypersomnia, and feelings of worthlessness or excessive guilt.
Poor oral health has been linked to depression. A study found that people with poor oral health were more likely to be depressed than those with good oral health. The study also found that people with depression were more likely to have poor oral health.
The link between oral health and depression is thought to be because oral health problems can cause tooth loss which can lead to social isolation. People who are self-conscious about their appearance may withdraw from social activities, especially those who have lost their teeth through surgery or an accident. In this case, these people must get a replacement tooth surgery to regain their lost confidence. Such surgery can help them recover from such a mental illness as well.
Oral health problems can also lead to sleep problems
Sleep problems are a common symptom of mental illness. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), nearly 60 percent of people with a mental health disorder also have a sleep disorder.
Sleep disorders can take many different forms, but they all share one thing: they make it difficult to get enough restful sleep. As a result, people with sleep disorders may find that they wake up frequently during the night or wake up feeling exhausted even after a full night’s sleep.
Sleep disorders can have several causes, but one of the most common is oral health problems. Oral health problems can cause pain, making it difficult to fall asleep or stay asleep. In addition, oral health problems can lead to sleep apnea, a condition in which a person’s breathing is interrupted during sleep. Sleep apnea can cause fatigue, daytime sleepiness, and headaches.
Oral health problems can worsen anxiety
Anxiety is a mental illness characterized by feelings of fear, worry, and unease. People with anxiety may also have physical symptoms such as a racing heart, sweating, and difficulty breathing. Anxiety can have several different causes, but stress is one of the most common.
Stress can come from many different sources, but oral health problems are one of the most common. Oral health problems can cause pain and can be challenging to cope with. In addition, oral health problems can lead to social isolation and worsening anxiety.
Oral health problems can also lead to financial stress. For example, dental care is expensive, and people who have oral health problems may find that they cannot afford the care they need. This financial stress can then lead to anxiety and other mental health problems.
Oral health problems can cause eating disorders
Eating disorders are mental illnesses that are characterized by abnormal eating habits. People with eating disorders may eat too much or too little, vomit after meals, use laxatives to lose weight, or fear gaining weight. Eating disorders can have several different causes, but body image issues are one of the most common.
Body image is the way a person perceives their own body. For example, people with body image issues may see themselves as too fat or too thin, regardless of their actual weight. Body image issues can lead to eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa.
Oral health problems can lead to body image issues. Oral health problems can cause a person to feel self-conscious about their appearance, leading to body image issues. In addition, oral health problems can lead to eating disorders. People with oral health problems may avoid eating because they are afraid of pain or self-conscious about their teeth.
Oral health and mental health are more intertwined than most people think. There are ways oral health can affect people’s mental health, including causing pain, leading to social isolation, causing sleep problems, worsening anxiety, causing eating disorders, and leading to body image issues. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is essential to seek help from a mental health professional.