During her appearance on The Tonight Show Monday night, actress Demi Moore explained a recent photograph she’d sent host Jimmy Fallon—which shows her missing a front tooth. She went on to reveal that both of her front teeth are actually missing.
“I sheared off my front teeth,” Moore said. “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 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.” (Speed up your progress towards your weight-loss goals with Women’s Health’s Look Better Naked DVD.)
Moore is certainly right that stress can cause serious health problems. According to the Mayo Clinic, untreated stress “can contribute to…high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity and diabetes.” Stress has also been linked to hair loss, low libido, trouble concentrating, and extreme fatigue.
As for what stress has to do with your teeth: Research from the American Academy of Periodontology found a “strong relationship” between stress and periodontal diseases, such as inflammatory mouth conditions like gingivitis, which almost half of adults in the U.S. deal with, according to the AAP.
Another way stress can affect your teeth is through bruxism, or teeth grinding, which can also cause tooth loss. Teeth grinding usually happens in one’s sleep and it affects 10 percent of adults, according to the American Sleep Association. It can, however, affect up to 50 percent of those with a family history of the disorder.
It’s not clear how exactly Moore lost her own teeth, but she’s been able to get some solid replacements. And hopefully her stress is under control, too.
“Thank God for modern dentistry,” Moore said.