Bruxism is the medical term for the condition where people tend to grind their teeth or clench their jaw unconsciously. Contrary to what most people believe, adults are not the only ones who can experience the condition, even young children as well. There are a lot of factors that can cause children to suffer from bruxism; some include stress, a bad bite, psychological, physiological, traumatic injuries, and even the intake of medications.
No matter what the cause, it is best for parents to take immediate actions to keep their children from suffering the consequences in the long run. At Longhorn Pediatric Dentistry & Orthodontics, we want every parent to be fully aware of the problems their little ones may experience so that they know when and how to take action. That said, in the case of bruxism, here are the things they should watch out for.
Symptoms of Bruxism
- Loud clicking and grinding noises they produce
- Complaints about jaw muscle pains usually in the morning
- Sensitivity to cold or hot substances
- Persistent claims of headache
- Injured teeth and gums
- Periodic tightening of the jaw muscles
The pain children feel when bruxism takes place is due to the contact between the lower and upper jaws. Since the condition happens unconsciously and during sleep, spotting its episodes can be hard. That is why parents should be vigilant by monitoring their children’s teeth from time to time.
Causes of Teeth Grinding and Jaw Clenching
- Natural reaction as the teeth begin erupting
- Response to earache
- Malpositioned teeth
- Developmental disorders and brain injuries
- Acid reflux
- Taken medications
- Inadequate oral hygiene
- Parafunctional habits
- Medical issues (asthma, ADHD, nutritional deficiencies, immaturity of the neuromuscular system, sleep apnea, respiratory infections, or dehydration)
- Part of the learning process where children are exploring the functions of their teeth
In treating Bruxism, the dentist would first determine the exact cause so that appropriate actions will be taken. If the problem is due to the alignment of the teeth, they may recommend a treatment for its correction. If stress is the main culprit, relaxation techniques and special exercises will be given. But to prevent the further damage of the teeth, our dental professional recommends parents to let their children get custom-made night guards to avoid damage to the teeth.
Get added protection for your child’s teeth, especially if they are suffering from bruxism! Book their appointment with us at Longhorn Pediatric Dentistry & Orthodontics to avail of our Mouth Guards in Austin, TX. Visit us at 4638 West Gate Blvd., Austin, TX 78745.