As we continue our series on the link between depression and oral health, the staff at Artistic Touch Dentistry reminds you to always discuss concerns about depression with your doctor. We’ve considered the link between depression and a lack of motivation to care for the teeth and gums, but there are other physiological factors further linking depression and dentistry.
Recent studies have shown that depression is accompanied by decreased salivary flow. This decreased salivary flow promotes bacteria growth in the mouth. Saliva helps to prevent bacteria from sticking to the oral cavity by constantly washing bacteria off the teeth and gums, but decreased saliva production hinders this mechanism.
Depression is also believed to be associated with decreased metabolism of serotonin, which in turn is associated with a tendency to consume more carbohydrates. Carbohydrates offer fuel for the body, but also for the bacteria in the mouth.
If you’re suffering with an episode of depression, consider the many ways this mental health condition can impact your total body health. We encourage you to seek care and come visit us at Artistic Touch Dentistry to reclaim your healthy smile!