Teeth Grinding in Kids: Why Early Intervention Is Key to Long-Term Dental Health
The grinding of teeth, known in the dental world as bruxism, is a common problem that is found in people of all ages, including infants. Usually, it begins innocently enough, but it can cause tremendous dental concerns when it becomes a habit. Teeth grinding can even lead to eventual tooth, soft tissue and hard tissue disease or loss. The key is for dental professionals to diagnose and treat bruxism in kids early, so the pattern can be broken.
Why Do Babies, Kids and Teens Grind Their Teeth?
Many parents want to know why their children are grinding their teeth. In truth, the underlying causes can vary widely from child to child. However, researchers suggest that the following reasons typically contribute to the beginning of frequent bruxism behaviors:
Of course, there are other reasons that a child develops a tooth grinding routine. No matter why he or she begins the habit, it’s important to stop it.
How Baby, Infant and Toddler Teeth Grinding Can Cause Dental Problems
A small bout of bruxism that is caught early will not create a lifetime of problems for the child. However, teeth are not invincible to constant stressors such as biting. Eventually, bruxism can lead to several problems:
Aside from problems directly related to the teeth themselves, bruxism can also cause pain in the jawbone. This leads to chronic soreness and headaches as well.
Work With AZ Family Dental to Stop Child Tooth Grinding
At AZ Family Dental, we take a very personalized approach to tooth grinding in babies and toddlers. For example, if the child is grinding their teeth, but otherwise has a healthy mouth, we will likely just observe rather than instantly intervene. Sometimes, bruxism goes away on its own. On the other hand, if the child gets older and the teeth appear to be suffering, preventative therapy steps may be taken.
When we move toward prevention, we have the ability to implement high-tech, proven procedures to solve the toughest child bruxism cases. Some of our treatment options include specially-created dental guards, plans for the parents to help children identify and replace tooth grinding habits with healthier coping mechanisms, and even dental work if the teeth are severely misaligned.
By taking away all the barriers to good dental health and hygiene practices, your baby, toddler, child or teen can enjoy smiling for a lifetime! All it takes is one check-up to determine if bruxism is an issue that we need to keep an eye on together. Contact AZ Family Dental today to schedule an appointment.