Bruxism in Children – How Common Is It?
Is your child grinding their teeth?
Teeth grinding – which is also known as bruxism – is very common in young children, especially among toddlers and those in the early years of primary school. It affects around 20-30% of children, and the majority of this percentage outgrow it by the time they reach their teens.
Why does my child grind their teeth?
Well there are a lot of reasons as to why they do this. A lot of the time, regardless of age, we don’t know that we are grinding our teeth, usually until someone points it out to us. Bruxism can be a result of stress, misaligned teeth, or an attempt to relieve pain – perhaps from an earache or teething pains. Certain medical conditions, including cerebral palsy can also cause children to grind their teeth. There are many other reasons, but vary from person to person.
How do I know if my child is grinding their teeth?
Unless you see your child clenching their jaw, you might not notice that they’re suffering from bruxism. There are some other signs to look out for too, including: jaw pain, headaches, facial pain, blunt teeth, struggling to eat, earache or even having a tense, angered look on their face. They may also complain about interrupted sleep.
Can bruxism be treated?
Yes. More and more research is being conducted on Bruxism, and more and more solutions are being developed. It is more than likely that your child will outgrow the problem, but if it is causing them pain, it is a good idea to speak to their dentist. They may be able to create mouth guards or provide splints, depending on the severity of the problem
There are also some natural remedies that might be worth trying – including essential oils and even certain plants. Relaxing essential oils such as Lavender & Ylang Ylang can help the body to relax. Sprinkling a little of these oils onto your child’s pillow, or using a water aroma diffuser in your child’s room may do the trick! We have also written a blog post about plants that can aid bruxism sufferers. You can check that out by clicking here.
Find a dentist near you.
If you need to find your child a dentist, you can do so on our website. All you need to do is visit, www.defactodentists.com and enter your location. From the options on the left, select ‘child-friendly’ to narrow the search. Then simply get in touch with the practice that best suits your child’s needs.