Teeth grinding, also known as bruxism, causes several oral health problems if not addressed by a dentist. While your child may grit their teeth in the daytime due to stress, it commonly occurs at nighttime without their knowledge. Look for the following signs of teeth grinding to determine whether you need to schedule an appointment with your dentist.
4 Symptoms Your Child Has Bruxism
1. Unexplained Dental Damage
If you notice your child’s teeth look filed down or have become chipped or damaged, bruxism may be to blame. They may also appear rounded or otherwise misshapen. This habit places extreme pressure on the teeth, weakening the enamel and leading to breaks and fractures.
2. Tooth Sensitivity
Because bruxism compromises the protective layers of the teeth, many children with the condition will be sensitive when drinking or eating hot or cold foods and beverages. As the grinding continues, the inner dentin of the teeth becomes exposed, causing more sensitivity than normal.
3. Jaw Pain
Bruxism causes the jaw muscles to work overtime, which can lead to fatigue and pain. If the teeth grinding is constant, your child may also experience pain in their ears or even tinnitus, an intermittent ringing, buzzing or whooshing sound.
4. Frequent Headaches
Chronic headaches are another sign, particularly if observed in the morning after a night’s rest. The added pressure to the jaw and facial muscles can trigger tension headaches, which often last longer and are more intense than typical headaches.
While teeth grinding can cause unpleasant side effects, it’s easily diagnosed and treated by a dentist. Most cases can be stopped or lessened by wearing a mouth guard at night. Parents in Paterson, NJ, trust Smile Central Dental to treat their children for bruxism and other oral health issues. The family dentistry practice fosters a welcoming and friendly environment for patients of all ages. To learn more about the office and the services they offer, call (973) 742-4200 or visit their website.