09 May Brush Up on Mental Health Month
This past year has taken its toll on all of us – including the team at Braden River Dental in Bradenton, FL. Now that we have Covid-19 vaccines that are highly effective and widely available, we can all begin to breathe a little easier.
But Bradenton dentist Dt. Tiffany Boyd and her staff understand that the effects of the strain we have been under will disappear overnight. Emerging from our Covid cocoons and re-engaging with the world, whether by returning to the office or by showing up at large family functions, brings its own set of stressors.
May in National Mental Health Awareness Month, a perfect time to remind ourselves that these are difficult times, and we should be kind to ourselves.
The Connection Between Dental Health and Mental Health
National Mental Health Month is also a good time to take a look at the impact that mental health challenges can have on dental care.
In No Mental Health without Oral Health, Steve Kisely, MD, PhD, says, “The poor physical health faced by people with mental illness has been the subject of growing attention, but there has been less focus on the issue of oral health even though it is an important part of physical health.”
As Kisely notes, the connection between mental health and dental health is not a one-way street. “In one direction, the prospect of dental treatment can lead to anxiety and phobia,” he says. “In the other, many psychiatric disorders, such as severe mental illness, affective disorders, and eating disorders, are associated with dental disease: These include erosion, caries, and periodontitis.”
You Are Not Alone
The theme of Mental Health Awareness Month 2021 is “You Are Not Alone.” If you are struggling or if you know someone who is, we want you to know that help is available.
- Emergency Medical Services: 911 (If the situation is potentially life-threatening)
- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or Live Online Chat
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) National Helpline: 1-800-662-HELP (4357)
SAMHSA’s National Helpline is a free, confidential, 24/7, 365-day-a-year treatment referral and information service (in English and Spanish) for individuals and families facing mental and/or substance use disorders.
- Veterans Crisis Line: 1-800-273-8255
- National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Helpline: 1-800-950-NAMI (6264)
If your tooth hurts, you would call a dentist in Bradenton. If you or someone you love is suffering with mental illness or pain, it isn’t any different and we encourage you to get the professional help you need to thrive.