Have you ever noticed your child when he/she is sleeping making sounds of grinding the teeth? This is quite common in kids and it is known as Bruxism.
Bruxism is the term that means grinding of teeth or the clenching of jaws. This occurs when the child is in deep sleep, or because of stress.
What are the signs of Bruxism?
- When your child makes grinding noises when sleeping
- When there is a sore jaw or face after waking up
- Experiencing pain when chewing
What are the Causes of Bruxism?
There is no known reason why bruxism occurs but experts observe kids could tend towards it when the following occurs
- When the top teeth and bottom do not meet
- As a way of responding to pain, which could be teething or earache
- Response to stress situation like adjusting to a new school setting, a change in environment
- It is present with some medical conditions like cerebral palsy
- Some medicines could make children develop bruxism
- Hyperactive kids may also have bruxism
What are the effects of Bruxism?
Some cases of bruxism go away on its own with no effect; some others cause headaches, earaches.
In a more severe case, where bruxism happens a lot it leads to the wearing down of tooth enamel, increases temperature sensitivity, chipped teeth, severe facial pain and jaw problems.
How to do you treat Bruxism?
- Most kids outgrow bruxism about the time they lose their milk teeth
- If you notice, your child grinds his/her teeth
- Observe what could be the cause of bruxism in your child. If it is the reaction to a change of environment, stress then try to calm the child down, take a shower, play soothing music and read a book etc
- It is also very necessary to visit the dentist if it continues
Please note that bruxism is a medical condition that has a higher chance of going away on its own with a close observation from parents, good communication and dental visits over time.