While most consider bruxism, or teeth grinding, to be an adult issue, on average 3 out of every 10 kids grind their teeth at some point. For many children, bruxism is a temporary issue and one they quickly outgrown. If teeth grinding becomes chronic, your child can start to experience severe pain in the face or jaw. In today’s blog, Rochester children’s dentist, Dr. Gilly Calcagno, explains the causes, and treatment options, of teeth grinding in children.
Causes of Bruxism
In the majority of cases, teeth grinding is the result of an improper bite alignment. Sometimes, children grind their teeth in response to the pain of teething. In other cases, a child can grind his/her teeth due to stress. Whether from changes at home or stress at school, many kids begin grinding their teeth in response to increased anxiety. Symptoms of teeth grinding include:
- Earaches, headaches, and neck pain
- Sensitive teeth
- Sore jaw
- Damaged or worn teeth
Thankfully, in many circumstances, bruxism in children is short-lived. Most children stop grinding their teeth as quickly as they started. But if your child continues to grind their teeth, or experiences sensitivity in their teeth or pain in the jaw or face, immediately contact Dr. Calcagno. After a visit and oral examination, Dr. Calcagno can decide if the roots of your child’s bruxism lie in stress or physical dental issues.
If stress is the cause, try to reduce anxiety in your child’s life. Talk to your kid about what might be bothering him/her, and attempt to work out a solution. Maintain a bedtime routine, perhaps reading or taking a bath before bed. Avoid caffeine in the four hours before bed, and make sure your child is keeping a regular sleep schedule, even on weekends. Dr. Calcagno may also prescribe a night guard if symptoms persist. A custom-made oral appliance worn at night, a night guard prevents the upper and lower teeth from touching, eliminating teeth grinding.
Schedule an Appointment with Your Rochester Dentist
Does your child frequently grind his/her teeth or experience other common symptoms of bruxism? Call to schedule a free consultation with Dr. Calcagno today by contacting our 55902 dentist office at (507) 281-3659. We offer the latest in general and cosmetic dentistry to restore our patients’ smiles. We serve patients from Rochester, Red Wing, St. Charles, Winona, Farmington, and surrounding areas.