Dr. Vidhi Vatsala

Last Modified: Mar 19, 2023


Table of Contents

  • 01.How does bad Oral Hygiene lead to Mental Health issues?
  • 02.Ways to prevent the effect of poor Oral Health on Mental Health
  • 03.Conclusion

How long have you not been to the dentist and not feeling happy? It might be because of poor oral hygiene. Oral health and mental health both are interconnected and not giving enough attention to oral hygiene can affect your mental health. You have to be physically fit, to be mentally well. Misaligned teeth can directly affect your self-esteem which might lead to major discomfort in your behaviour and can make you anxious in social places. Also, poor mental health leads to poor oral hygiene, as you start eating fast food and extra sugar to feel happy for a moment.

Let’s understand how poor oral hygiene affects your mental health and ways to prevent it.

How does bad Oral Hygiene lead to Mental Health issues?

The most common mental health issue caused by bad oral health is anxiety. People with misaligned teeth and gum problems often feel conscious while speaking and smiling during social interactions. Know more about the other mental health problems below:

Pain and discomfort: Tooth decay, gum disease, and other oral health problems can cause pain and discomfort in the mouth, making it difficult to eat, sleep, and perform daily activities. Chronic pain can also lead to anxiety, depression, and irritability. This constant discomfort might leave a long-lasting effect on your mental health.

Low Self-esteem and confidence: Oral health problems such as missing teeth, bad breath, and discoloured teeth can impact a person’s self-esteem and confidence. This can lead to social isolation, low mood, and feelings of shame or embarrassment.

Social interactions: Oral health problems can impact a person’s ability to speak, smile, and interact with others. This can lead to social anxiety, isolation, and feelings of loneliness and depression.

Sleep disturbances: Oral health problems such as snoring, sleep apnea, and teeth grinding can disrupt a person’s sleep. This can lead to fatigue, irritability, and difficulty concentrating during the day, which can negatively impact mental health.

Chronic diseases: Oral health problems are linked to several chronic diseases, including heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. These conditions can impact a person’s mental health and well-being, as they may require ongoing medical treatment and lifestyle changes.

Ways to prevent the effect of poor Oral Health on Mental Health

Poor oral hygiene does not affect only mental health, over time it starts affecting each part of your body. Regular oral care is necessary to keep all the problems created by bad oral hygiene at bay.

Brush your teeth twice a day: For oral care, brush your teeth twice a day with fluoride toothpaste. This helps to remove food particles and plaque that can cause tooth decay and gum disease.

Floss daily: Flossing removes plaque and food particles from between your teeth and gums. It can prevent gum disease and tooth decay.

Limit sugary and acidic foods: Sugary and acidic foods can damage your teeth and lead to decay. Try to limit your intake of these foods and choose healthier options, such as fruits and vegetables.

Drink plenty of water: Drinking water can help to wash away food particles and bacteria from your mouth. It can also prevent dry mouth, which can cause tooth decay.

Visit your dentist regularly: Regular dental check-ups can help to detect and treat any dental problems before they become more serious. This can help to prevent tooth decay and gum disease.

Practice stress management: Stress can affect your oral health by causing you to grind your teeth or neglect your oral hygiene. Practising stress management techniques, such as exercise, meditation, or deep breathing, can help to reduce stress and improve your overall health.


Oral care should be your primary concern to lead a healthy lifestyle. Ensure that you visit the dentist regularly and take the required treatment to enhance your oral health.



Dr. Vidhi Vatsala

Mar 19, 2023