Bruxism, or grinding of teeth, is most noticeably common in children and adults. For some children, tooth grinding is limited to daytime hours, but night grinding (during sleep) is more common. Bruxism can lead to a wide range of dental problems, depending on the frequency of the behavior, the intensity of grinding, and the underlying causes of grinding. A variety of psychological, physiological and physical factors can lead children to this. In particular, it is believed that misalignment of the jaw (wrong bite), stress and traumatic brain damage contribute to bruxism, although grinding can also occur as a side effect of some drugs.
How can mouth guards protect my child?
Most sports organizations now require participants to use mouthguards on a regular basis. Although mouthguards are designed primarily to protect teeth, they can also significantly reduce the degree of force transmitted from a traumatic point of impact (jaw) to the central nervous system (cerebral base). In this way, mouthguards help to minimize the risk of traumatic brain damage, which is especially important for younger children. Mouthguards also reduce the prevalence of the following injuries:
- Cheek lesions
- Tongue lesions
- Gum and soft tissue injuries
- Tooth fractures
- Jawbone fractures
- Lip lesions
- Neck injuries
These mouth guards are some of the highest rated, recommended, and quality products that you’ll ever find:
1 Professional Dental Guard – Dental Duty
The Dental Duty night guard can be easily adjusted to fit any type of mouth. This is possible because it comes with 4 mouthguards of different sizes, of the highest quality, designed and approved by the FDA and is BPA free. This mouthguard has a variety of purposes such as being used as a teeth whitening tray, a dental protector, as well as a sports mouthguard. It also comes with a free hygiene case that has antibacterial properties, making it perfectly portable.
Enthusiastic Amazon review: “Great fit even for young kids”
2 Teeth Grinding Mouth Guards – DentalCare Labs
Here is another of our inputs that we consider to be the best mouthguard for tooth grinding for kids. DentalCare Labs Anti Teeth Grinding Nightguard is made from high-quality materials that are FDA approved and is also latex and BPA free. It can be used as a teeth whitening tray and can be flexible to fit any mouth, no matter how much your teeth are aligned. These have been used and testified by satisfied clients to relax the jaw muscles and eliminate all mouth problems and disorders such as temporomandibular joint disorders (TMJ).
Enthusiastic Amazon review: “Searched for a mouth guard that would be good for my 5 year old who grinds her teeth at night. This is great because one size fits me and the other size fits her. Love that there are 2 of each size as well – we use them as a back-up. Easy instructions to follow as well.”
3 Mouth Guard from ProDental
Prudential moldable mouthguards come with direct support from the dentist where a dentist is more than happy to help you with your mouthguard by phone or email. Includes a set of three mouthguards that can be trimmed to fit any mouth size for maximum retention and comfort. These mouthguards are made of high quality and durable FDA approved polyvinyl, soft, odorless and tasteless. Each of these protectors is made to last for 12 months or more and can be used as guards.
4 Grind No More – Plackers
Plackers’ Grind No More relieves the problems of having to boil and mold the night guards and can easily be used on the upper and lower teeth without problems. They are super light and free from any uncomfortable element that can affect a person’s ability to speak. GNM is exactly what grinders and clenchers are looking for; absorbing bite plates, bite plate alignment grooves and bite plate stabilizing lips, which go hand in hand for the optimal protection of teeth.
Enthusiastic Amazon review: “Great kid-size night guard”
5 Advanced Comfort NightGuard – Doctor’s
Say goodbye to your night grinding – the Doctor’s Night Guard is your saving grace. Its two-layer design has a soft top layer and a firm bottom layer that is designed to cushion and absorb the pain of any tooth grinding. It is not only thin but also flexible, allowing your kids to enjoy long and comfortable uninterrupted dreams.
6 DentaPro2000 Teeth Grinding Mouth Guard
If your child is suffering from teeth grinding, bruxism, TMJ, headache, earache, facial muscle pain and stiff shoulders, the DentaPro2000 mouthguard is the solution you are looking for. These guards are specially designed by a team of dentists and certified professionals who have witnessed and recognized the damage caused by teeth grinding and compression and responded to these problems.
These guards protect your child’s mouth while sleeping comfortably, adapt perfectly to any type of mouth, and give the best results when washed and cleaned before and after use.
Enthusiastic Amazon review: “We purchased for my daughter who had troubles with grinding her teeth at night. (It is nearly impossible to find a decent deal on these in child sizes!) We have never used these for my daughter as it was too big for her mouth. From what we can tell, it is a nice, thick plastic and appears to be of good quality.”
7 Professional Dental Guard – Dr. Strong
Dr. Strong Dental Guard comes with a set of 4 dental guards that can be trimmed and customized to fit any mouth of any size for the most comfortable experience. It is BPA free and works as athletic mouthguard, molded mouthguard, and teeth-whitening tray.
What kind of mouthguards should I buy for my child?
Although there are thousands of brands of mouthguards, most brands fall into three main categories: In-Stock Mouthguards, Boiling and Biting Mouthguards, and Custom Mouthguards. Some points to consider when choosing a mouthguard include:
How much do you plan to spend?How often does the child play sports?What kind of sport does the child play? (Basketball and baseball tend to cause most oral injuries.)
In light of these points, here is an overview of the advantages and disadvantages of each type of mouthguard:
Stock mouth guards: These mouth guards can be purchased directly from the shelf and can be placed immediately in the child’s mouth. The fit is universal (one size fits all), which means the mouthguard is not suitable. The mouthguards in stock are very cheap, easy to install and quick to locate in sporting goods stores. Pediatric dentists tend not to prefer this type of mouth guard, as it provides minimal protection, prevents proper breathing and speech, and tends to be uncomfortable.
Boil and bite mouth guards: These mouthguards are generally made of thermoplastic and are easily found in most sporting goods stores. First, the thermoplastic should be immersed in hot water to make it flexible, and then pressed on the child’s teeth to create a custom mold. Boil and bite mouth guards are slightly more expensive than original mouthguards but tend to offer more protection, feel more comfortable in the mouth and facilitate speech and breathing production.
Customized mouth guards: These mouthguards offer the highest degree of protection and are custom-made by the dentist. First, the dentist makes a print of the child’s teeth using special material, then the mouth guard is built on the mold. Custom mouthguards are more expensive and take longer to adapt, but are more comfortable, orthodontically correct and fully approved by the dentist. If you have any questions or concerns about choosing a mouth guard for your child, contact your pediatric dentist.
WHY CHILDREN GRIND TEETH
Your child’s tooth grinding behavior can have physical and psychological origins. On the physical side, teething and incorrect alignment of teeth can cause symptoms in young children or preschoolers. Ear pain and ear infections can trigger tooth grinding in young and older children.
Children with specific medical conditions, such as cerebral palsy, can develop bruxism as a secondary problem. In other cases, bruxism can be a side effect of using certain drugs.
Stress and anxiety with certain psychological conditions can also play an important role in the development of kid’s bruxism. Perhaps your child has recently become particularly irritable, which has led to disagreements with you or their siblings. Your older child may not like your new teacher or worry about an upcoming school test. Or, your hyperactive child may have developed bruxism as a secondary condition, and you may see them grinding their teeth sometimes.
Why Do Worms Cause Teeth Grinding?
Several studies have been conducted to study the relationship between digestive parasites (worms) and bruxism.
Although the research is not conclusive at this time, it has been suggested that bruxism is more common in children with intestinal parasites; although it cannot be said with certainty that parasites really cause bruxism.
What is known, however, is that the brain and the intestine are closely linked by the vagus nerve. Therefore, it seems that the presence of toxic invaders can cause the brain to activate the grinding of teeth in children. Infections of this type often occur along with other symptoms such as allergies, food sensitivities, and nutrient deficiencies. When parasites such as pinworms, tapeworms and roundworms enter the digestive system, they release small toxic molecules that affect the body and can trigger an attack of bruxism. Infection with parasites is more common than you may expect because hands, water, toys and dirt are common sources of worms.
Children are more likely to have worms than adults because they usually put dirty toys or hands in their mouths and bite their nails. Nail bite is one of the most common reasons for a child to end up with worms. If your child nibbles their nails and grinds their teeth, we advise him to do everything possible to stop the habit.
TOOTH GRINDING: UNCOVERING THE CAUSE
Most likely, your child does not know that they are grinding their teeth.
Perhaps they recently noticed their confusing behavior or their siblings have drawn it to your attention. If you suspect that your child is affected by bruxism, look for other signs that often accompany teeth grinding behavior.
For example, your child may complain that he or she has facial pain or jaw pain every morning.
Perhaps chewing their food has become more and more painful. And, maybe some of their teeth have become sensitive to hot or cold liquids or food. After hearing about these disturbing symptoms, you are concerned about your child’s oral health.
To find the source of these confusing symptoms, ask your child’s dentist for help. Plan a diagnostic dental visit, during which the dentist will carefully examine your child’s teeth for unusual wear.
The dental practitioner will check the enamel of chipped teeth or cracks in individual teeth, and also look for exceptionally sensitive teeth by lightly spraying water and air on your child’s teeth.
So, what happens in the case that the dentist finds dental damage? This damage may indicate the presence of misaligned teeth that could cause discomfort to your child and their dental health.
To see if stress can also be a factor, the dentist can ask your child a few simple questions. For example, the dentist may ask questions about feelings and rituals before bedtime of your child, as well as about the bedtime routine. You can also ask whether the child has recently had nightmares. This health care professional may also ask if your child is concerned about worrying conflicts at home or at school. Your child’s answers will help the dentist determine what is behind your child’s tooth grinding behavior and formulate a treatment plan that can help solve the problem.
Is there anything I can do to lower the chances of my child grinding his/her teeth?
There may be some things in your child’s environment that trigger tooth grinding cases. Here are some tips to create a quieter atmosphere:
It sounds cliché! But, minimize daily stress. Plan in advance. Prepare lunch on the eve of school. Get dressed in advance. Start your day early. Understand and respond to your kid’s needs.
Parents! Take control of your own anxiety. Your children are a “mini-you.” Lead by example.
Create a quiet and relaxing room. Listen to your child and let them have a helping hand in decorating their own bedroom. Choose your favorite colors and consider low lighting.
Exercise every day and eat healthily. Consume less sugar.
Positive strengthening instead of negative.
How To Stop your child Grinding Teeth In Sleep Naturally
2 Feed your child a healthy diet that includes plenty of vitamins A, B, and K2 that help strengthen the immune system and prevent infection with worms.
3 Secondly, ask your doctor to perform a parasite test. If the test is positive, your child may need anti-worm medicines.
Over time, bruxism and grinding of teeth in children can cause the teeth to erode and if they do not stop the issue in its tracks, it can cause permanent damage and impact the tooth pulp. Most importantly, if teeth grinding is a result of worms, the infection could lead to other health complications.