Bruxism is the medical term for the grinding of teeth or the clenching of jaws
13 February 2019| Last updated on 25 February 2019
Bruxism is common among kids; around 2 to 3 out of every 10 kids suffer from bruxism.
Teeth grinding (and snoring) can be caused by mouth breathing. When children breathe through their mouths, their bodies aren’t properly oxygenated, and as a result, their muscles get strained. In turn, this leads children to grind their teeth.
Kids may also grind because their top and bottom teeth aren't properly aligned. Others do it as a response to pain, such as from a toothache or an earache. Kids might grind their teeth as a way to ease the pain, just as they might rub a sore muscle.
Many kids outgrow these fairly common causes for grinding their teeth but will generally have developed bite issues such as overjet, deepbite, underbite, and misalignment, that result from mouth breathing.
Very mild cases of bruxism may go undetected with no ill effects, while others may cause headaches or earaches. Typically, though, bruxism will be more bothersome to other family members because of the grinding sound.
In some cases, nighttime grinding and clenching can wear down tooth enamel, chip teeth, increase temperature sensitivity, and cause severe facial pain and jaw problems.
Some signs to watch for are:
- Grinding noises when your child is sleeping
- Complaints of a sore jaw or face after waking up in the morning
- Complaints of pain when chewing
The treatment of choice for bruxism is restoring nasal breathing with the Myobrace therapy.
The Myobrace therapy allows the balance of the different functions of the face (breathing and swallowing) to establish a correct muscle position and movement.
This resolves the issue of teeth grinding.The Myobrace therapy also establishes the correct jaw position and fully aligns teeth, by guiding growth correctly. Orthodontic treatment is rarely required for children having undergone a Myobrace treatment.