Teeth grinding occurs when the child unconsciously contracts the elevating muscles of the mandible for a prolonged period of time, causing the teeth of the upper jaw to rub against those of the lower jaw.
If your child grinds their teeth, you probably have many questions. Today we’re going to address some of them.
Causes of bruxism
Bruxism (teeth grinding) is common in children. It can occur both day and night and can be caused by various psychological, muscular or occlusal factors.
However, we note that teeth grinding in children is often caused by a misaligned jaw. It may also occur when the child is under stress or as a result of head trauma. It can also be a side effect of certain medications.
Symptoms of teeth grinding
Children with bruxism often show the following symptoms:
- Pain in the jaw, often upon waking up
- Sensitivity of the teeth to heat or cold
- Abnormal wear of tooth enamel
- Injuries to the gums
Teeth grinding can be harder to detect when it occurs during the day. But when it occurs at night, the noise it makes is easily identifiable.
Since it can lead to a wide range of problems, early intervention is important when a child grinds their teeth.
But what can be done?
How to treat this problem
Although it may spontaneously stop as the child gets older, consultation with a dentist is always best to ensure that the problem is properly managed. Only a dentist will be able to make an accurate diagnosis and propose the right treatment or dental care.
Nevertheless, bite plates are commonly used to protect the teeth and prevent premature tooth wear caused by bruxism.
Bite plates are comfortable and custom-designed to be worn at night and prevent teeth from touching each other. Moreover, this mouthguard eliminates or reduces noise and tooth wear.
However, it does not solve the problem of jaw contraction. If stress is the cause of your child’s teeth grinding, they must learn to manage it better.
The importance of seeking treatment when your child grinds their teeth
There you have it. Now you know more about bruxism in children.