Ah the joy of the end of the day with a sleeping child. Then you hear the constant noise that come from that sweet face, which becomes so intolerable. All that constant grinding and gnawing of the teeth or bruxism as it is
called. You wake her up just for it to start all over again. Bruxism is a term used to explain grinding teeth usually when asleep or under stress. Experts say the highest incidences of grinding teeth are of children under five years old. There are different causes but it is most thought that the teeth aren't aligned correctly. Other children do it in response to teething pain or an earache. Most kids do out grow it.
Teeth grinding is triggered by stress
Stress with tension or anger may also cause kids to grind teeth. The tension of a school test, or moving may be upsetting, and cause them to grind their teeth. Even arguing with siblings can bring stress to grind teeth. Hyperactive children may grind teeth too.
Night- time teeth grinding
Bruxism doesn't hurt the teeth, and even are undetected with a possible headache or even earaches. The condition bothers you more than the child. In some the night time grinding with clenching can wear down the teeth by chipping teeth, wearing off tooth enamel, increased sensitivity and facial pain, or having jaw problems such as temporomandibular joint disease (TMJ). Most kids don't get TMJ unless it becomes a chronic problem.
Symptoms of bruxism
Most kids that are grinding teeth aren't even aware that they are doing it. It's their family that makes them aware they are doing it, and to prevent teeth grinding. Some of the signs to be aware of are: grinding noises when asleep, complaints of a sore jaw or face, thumb sucking or fingernail biting, gnawing on pencils or toys, or chewing the inside of the cheek.
Be sure to visit the dentist if you see your child grinding his teeth. Most kids do outgrow bruxism but be sure to stay in contact with a dentist that will help with the problem. Sometimes they subscribe a dentalmouth guard to prevent teeth grinding.
To prevent grinding teeth the dentist may suggest some relaxation techniques for preventing stress. Simple things like reading a story together, taking a bath, listening to music before bedtime may make the stress easier where there aren't so much teeth grinding. Try to make it easier on the child by less arguing before bedtime giving the reassurance if their afraid of doing things that are causing the stress. Most of all just talk about feelings, and what is going on to prevent the teeth grinding, and to help the child with what's going on.