As experienced by countless people, enduring a tooth ache can be very agonizing and may produce so much dread and terror by just the thought of visiting the dentist to have the guilty tooth extracted. One may think that these are enough reasons to put premium into everyone’s dental care. But for those who may still remain unconvinced, you may want to do it for your mental health. A new study which was presented in the annual meeting of both the American and Canadian Associations for Dental Research in March this year has concluded that tooth loss may cause depression and anxiety among men and women.
With the objective of determining the association between tooth loss and depression and anxiety, a study was carried out by researchers from West Virginia University in Morgantown, Virginia. From an original list of 451,075 men and women, this was narrowed down to 76,292 eligible respondents. All these participants were over 19 years and satisfied the team’s requirements in respect to data on tooth loss, depression and anxiety.
Tooth Loss and Mental Conditions
After evaluating the information provided by the respondents, the research team was able to find that of those who experienced tooth loss, 13.4 percent of the subjects suffered from anxiety and 16.7 percent from depression. When taken together, this means that over 30 percent or nearly a third of those who may experience a tooth loss may face increased risk of suffering these mental conditions.
These findings may actually be corroborated by an earlier study from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) which established a significant association between tooth loss and depression and anxiety based on a sample of 246,875 men and women. It was further determined that the extent of the tooth loss was directly correlated to the severity of the depression or anxiety.
Impact on Quality of Life
Medical experts can readily understand why this dental issue may have an impact on a person’s mental and emotional well-being. Losing a teeth or having bad teeth can greatly destroy one’s self esteem in many ways. This may make one very conscious of the physical appearance, create speech problems, and cause eating difficulties. All these may lead to a feeling of embarrassment and may lead to social withdrawal.
Need for Regular Dental Care
Quite clearly, the benefits of a regular dental care extend to numerous areas. It does not only allow for better eating or making one look good physically, it may also offer a positive way of life in the absence of depression and anxiety. These are actually good reasons why you should make visits to the dentist a priority.