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  • Writer's pictureGaby

When Kids Grind Their Teeth

Teeth grinding, also known as bruxism, is not uncommon in children. It often occurs during sleep, but it can also happen during waking hours. Here are some common reasons why kids may grind their teeth:

  1. Normal Development: Teeth grinding is a common occurrence in many children, especially during the early years when their baby teeth are coming in. It often decreases as they get older.

  2. Stress or Anxiety: Children may grind their teeth as a response to stress or anxiety. This can be related to changes in their environment, school, family dynamics, or other factors that may be causing them stress.

  3. Misalignment of Teeth: Problems with the way the upper and lower teeth fit together, known as malocclusion, can contribute to teeth grinding. This issue may resolve as the child's permanent teeth come in and their bite adjusts.

  4. Earache or Toothache: Pain in the ears or teeth can lead to teeth grinding as a way for children to cope with the discomfort.

  5. Hyperactivity or ADHD: Some studies suggest a connection between attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and teeth grinding.

  6. Sleep Disorders: Children with sleep disorders, such as sleep apnea, may be more prone to teeth grinding.

If you notice that your child is grinding their teeth, it's essential to address the underlying cause. Here are some tips:

  • Visit the Dentist: Schedule regular dental check-ups to monitor your child's oral health and discuss any concerns with the dentist.

  • Create a Relaxing Bedtime Routine: Establishing a calming bedtime routine can help reduce stress and anxiety, potentially alleviating teeth grinding.

  • Limit Stimulants: Avoid giving your child foods and drinks that contain caffeine, especially close to bedtime.

  • Address Stressors: If your child is experiencing stress or anxiety, work to identify and address the underlying issues. This might involve talking to your child, teachers, or a pediatrician.

  • Use a Mouthguard: In some cases, a dentist may recommend a mouthguard to protect the teeth from the effects of grinding, especially if it's causing damage. However not always due the fact that a child's mouth is always changing -(loosing or gaining teeth).

Its important to remember that your teeth in general should never touch, unless you are eating or swallowing. If you have concerns about your child's teeth grinding, it's advisable to consult with a pediatric dentist or healthcare professional who can provide guidance based on your child's specific situation.

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