As if you didn't have enough to worry about during this crazy year of 2020, here's another thing you can add to the list. Dentists across the country are reporting an uptick in cracked and fractured teeth during the pandemic.

According to a report from Western Mass News, dentists across the nation are reporting a sharp spike in cracked and fractured teeth since March, and they believe stress and anxiety brought on by the pandemic are to blame.

Prosthodontist Dr. Vincent Mariano, owner of East Longmeadow's EMA Dental, had this to say. "Recently, the American Dental Association (ADA) has given us statistics on a survey they recently did here in September. They’ve seen throughout the country a 50 percent increase in symptoms related to stress."

Those symptoms include cracked teeth, fractured teeth, and excessive clenching and grinding, otherwise known as bruxism.

Apparently, according to experts, bruxism seems to be more severe during periods of heightened stress and anxiety.

Mariano also said a sign that you're grinding your teeth at night is if you wake up with a sore jaw.

Mariano explained, "What we are finding is they are feeling tenderness and soreness in the joints, headaches. They’re having difficulty and challenges when they wake up in the morning with opening their mouth. Those are all signs."

Beyond treating these symptoms with mouth guards, the best prevention comes at your annual check-up.

Another way to avoid the pain of damaging your teeth from stress-induced bruxing is to consult a mental health expert.

For anyone who is dealing with bruxism as a result of heightened stress, some suggestions include meditation, yoga, and exercise.

There is much, much more to the story and you can check it out at Western Mass News' website here.

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