As our kids grow there are things, as a parent, that we need to look out for. Things like if they are having trouble seeing to help them get glasses, if they hurt themselves and need to get a case for that body part, and something that you might not even think about are their teeth and if they have bruxism.
Bruxism is teeth grinding that happens when they are either awake or sleeping. Though teeth grinding can seem unimportant to look for, but it can play a huge role in their life and can cause different issues in the long term. So keep reading to discover ten things you should know about teeth grinding or clenching when it comes to kids!
10 Look For Triggers
Sometimes when a person has a problem with bruxism it can be triggered by something. This means your child is grinding their teeth from a situation in their life to help them through it.
This can be when they are angry and don’t know how to properly express themselves can be a kind of copy mechanism. Be away from the situation your child is in when they start grinding their teeth and this can help you find a positive way for them to cope with that kind of situation.
9 Don’t Replace It With Another Bad Habit
Many times teeth grinding is a habit someone forms but is not even aware of. Once you point it out to your child, you need to make sure they replace this bad habit with a positive one. This can be them playing with a squishy toy when they are feeling like that.
But if you do not actively help your child replace that habit with a positive one it can lead them to another bad habit. Many times kids will just switch to chewing pencils or pens which can still cause serious damage to their teeth.
8 Things You Can Do To Help
When it comes to trying to stop doing a behavior that you might not even be aware of can be hard, but WebMD.org has shown that there are some things that your child can do in their life to help with their teeth grinding and clenching.
This includes cutting back on rinks that have caffeine in them like soda and energy drinks to help keep them calm and not need to move their mouths. Also putting a warm cloth on their jaw before they go to bed can help relax the muscles in their mouth to avoid clenching their teeth. Though this might not solve everything, it can help get your child in the right direction.
7 It Could Lead To Oral Surgery Or Teeth Replacement
Teeth grinding can become a serious issue if your child is grinding their teeth to their point they are chipping or losing their teeth. Though this is a very serious side effect that happens, luckily dentistry has advanced in the last few years.
Now if your child does have tooth damage they can get a cap placed on their teeth if they chipped it or get a full tooth replaced. Though this can require some oral surgery for them, it can be fixed. But will not fix the problem they have grinding their teeth.
6 It Can Happen When They Are Awake Too
One of the most talked-about kind of bruxism is when people are grinding their teeth when they are sleeping. Though that is the common form of bruxism, grinding teeth is a habit that someone can do when they are awake.
If someone has bruxism when they are awake they most likely will not notice when they are grinding their teeth making it harder for them to understand they have a problem. So don’t just pay attention to your child when they are sleeping since bruxism can be something they experience while awake.
5 There Are Common Causes
According to MayoClinic.org, many common causes can lead to someone experiencing bruxism. Some of the common causes are stress, anxiety, side effects from medication, or family genes. It has been reported that if your experience bruxism then your child is going to be more liking to experience it as well.
So if teeth grinding is an issue that you deal with or had problems with in the past then you need to make sure you are checking in on your child to see if they are doing it too.
4 Know The Common Side Effects
When someone is experiencing bruxism they may not even notice when they are grinding their teeth making it hard for them to realize they have a problem. Luckily there are common side effects that people have if they are having a problem with bruxism.
This can include their teeth or jaw hurting headaches, or even earache, as reported by MayoClinic.org. Pay attention to see if your child is experiencing any of these side effects because it can lead to them having bruxism and not just a one-off headache.
3 Invest In A Mouth Guard
One of the most common forms of bruxism is when children grind their teeth at night. If you notice that your child is doing this behavior when they are sleeping then you want to invest in a mouth guard for them to protect their teeth.
You can buy a guard online or go to your dentist for a custom one, but you need to make sure that your child is using it every night to help with not damage their teeth and help control this problem they are having with their teeth.
2 It Can Cause Serious Teeth Damage
Since our teeth are hidden in our mouths we can forget of fragile and sensitive they can be. If your child is someone who grinds their teeth they can cause some serious change without even noticing it. WebMD.com has reported that teeth grinding can lead to fracking, loosening, or even losing teeth because of this.
The result of losing their teeth can cause them to be more likely to get infections and diseases in their mouths. Talk to your kids about all of the effects that can help their teeth if they keep grinding them.
1 Talk To Their Dentist
The biggest thing to do when you notice that your child is grinding or clenching their teeth you need to talk to their dentist. Talking to their dentist can help give you an idea of if they have done any damage to their teeth and help you prevent them from doing any further damage to them.
So make sure to set up a dentist appointment for your child the moment you noticed them doing this behavior to help you come up with a plan to help them deal with it.