We pour a lot of money into our mouths — not just when it comes to food and drink, but whitening strips, braces, mouth guards, electric toothbrushes, and all kinds of other hardware. It's obvious we care a lot about our smiles, but with COVID-19 cooping us up for an entire year now, we're also hitting all kinds of walls with stress.
It turns out we're taking out a lot of our troubles on our teeth, according to a new survey just released by the American Dental Association. More than 70 percent of dentists say they're seeing more patients with issues related to grinding our teeth, clenching our jaws, and just plain not taking care of ourselves. More than 6 in 10 dentists say they're also seeing more patients with chipped and cracked teeth, jaw pain, and headaches related to our facial muscles.
Staying home to avoid spreading or catching COVID can be exhausting in and of itself, even when it's absolutely the right thing to do. When you're stuck indoors and isolated, it's even easier to fall out of your normal routines, which can include simple self-care like flossing and brushing your teeth. Give yourself the support of watching out for your oral health — and if you're experiencing any of the above symptoms, reach out to a dental professional. Dentists' offices have all kinds of protections in place in order to safely see patients during the pandemic, and no matter what, you'll be smiling easier once you can sort out what's troubling your mouth.