Demi Moore seems to be doing everything right in the beauty department to defy ALL signs of aging, but the 54-year-old admits she’s missed the mark in one very important area.
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“I sheared off my front teeth. I’d love to say it was skateboarding or something really kind of cool, but I think it’s something that’s important to share because I think it’s literally, probably after heart disease, one of the biggest killers in in America, which is stress. Stress sheared off my front tooth. But, in an effort to get ready for you, I wanted to make sure my teeth were in,” she told Jimmy Fallon on the Tonight Show, as reported on by People.
So how common is stress as a smile-buster? “Stress is definitely a significant dental issue,” says New York cosmetic dentist Zachary E. Linhart, DDS, adding that, in his midtown Manhattan practice, some 80 percent of patients show signs of wear and tear due to stress and subsequent tooth damage. “People under stress whether from work, family, or any other stressful activity often clench and/or grind their teeth together. Usually this clenching or grinding occurs at night, but can also be a habit during the day.”
What’s more, Dr. Linhart says most patients are usually totally unaware they’re even doing the habit. “Signs that we notice include shortening of the teeth, stress/fracture lines in the enamel and gum recession. In addition, these unfortunate habits can cause headaches, muscle tenderness and neck pain. In Demi Moore’s case, this constant pressure on the teeth can cause your teeth to break!”
Atlanta cosmetic dentist Ronald E. Goldstein, DDS, agrees that this “subconscious” factor plays a huge part in damaging your smile. So unless you know what to look for, you will probably continue to grind daily—to the detriment of the dentition. “The result of stress can be manifested by teeth clenching either at night, during sleep or daytime hours. I estimate that 85 percent of the population clench their teeth at sometime and they are not aware of it.”
The fix: Visit your dentist and discuss (and even tell him or her if you are undergoing stress), as there are plenty of solutions. “We can create night guards, bite plates and other devices to help protect the teeth,” Dr. Linhart says.