Drs. Smith and Domingue
200 Beaullieu Drive Bldg. 2 Lafayette, LA 70508

Can Stress Cause Cavities?

If you’ve ever worried about you or your children developing cavities, you’re not alone. Cavities have a big impact on quality of life and involve unexpected expense and visits to the dentist. You might be surprised to learn about a potential link between psychological stress and the development of cavities.

A recent review of several studies published by Biomed Central: Oral Health showed a correlation between the development of dental caries (cavities) and salivary cortisol in children ages four to 14. Of the six observational and experimental studies reviewed, four supported this finding. Researchers gathered data for the review from databases such as MEDLINE, PsychINFO, and Embase.

Cavities form when food, acid, and your saliva combine to form plaque on your teeth, which then wears away at the tooth’s hard outer surface (enamel). If untreated, the plaque continues to erode the inner tooth material (pulp), destroying the health of the tooth. Regular visits to your trusted dentist in Lafayette, LA, and good dental hygiene can remove these sugars from the teeth before acid plaque forms. If not, a cavity may form and then result in pain and sensitivity when eating. You may need a root canal if the damage is extensive.

With hectic schedules and the pressures of daily life, stress is common. Regular visits to your dentist in Lafayette, LA, are even more important if stress plays a part in cavity development. Your dentist can clean and examine you and your child’s teeth before cavities take hold. It’s also important to make an appointment right away if anyone in your family has pain or sensitivity in a tooth.

To learn more about the types of preventive dentistry we offer in our Lafayette, LA dental office, we invite you to get in touch. We warmly welcome families.