Why Do Toddlers Grind Their Teeth and What Can Be Done to Stop It?

Why Do Toddlers Grind Their Teeth and What Can Be Done to Stop It?

The unpleasant sound of grinding may irritate you or bother you when you hear your child grind their teeth at night. You may see your tiny one frequently moving their mouth while sleeping. This can be accompanied by sounds of clacking or grinding when the teeth rub together. These are all symptoms that your little one may be grinding their teeth.

Stress or anxiety can drive adults to clench or grind their teeth. On the other hand, Toddlers are more likely to grind their teeth since they’re trying out their new teeth. In certain cases, you may need to seek additional therapies to safeguard your child’s teeth even if they have outgrown this tendency in most toddlers. However, most of the time, your child will outgrow this habit!

Why Do Toddlers Grind Their Teeth and What Can Be Done to Stop It?

Teeth Grinding

Teeth grinding is also called bruxism. Bruxism in toddlers is when they clench or grind their teeth consciously or unconsciously. When the upper or lower jaw is pressed down on each other, the teeth move against each other. It is not considered a disease, but certain conditions can exacerbate it.

The second stage of sleep, REM, is when babies are most likely to grind their teeth. When youngsters grind their teeth while they sleep, they are unlikely to wake up. It is possible to grind your teeth if your jaw contractions are very powerful. Even if it’s loud enough to be heard, it’s usually unintentional, and your child isn’t even aware they are doing it if it occurs while they are sleeping.


The severity of tooth grinding can range widely. Bruxism in children can range from mild to severe, with some youngsters grinding their teeth hundreds of times a night while others have just a few small episodes.

Your baby’s risk of damaging their permanent teeth increases as their tooth grinding gets worse and more frequent. Prolonged bruxism in children might result in long-term damage due to tooth wear.

Causes of Teeth Grinding

Bruxism, the habit of grinding one’s teeth while sleeping, can occur at any time in one’s life for a variety of reasons. University of Michigan Health System says that children may begin grinding their teeth at the age of six months or later when their teeth begin to erupt, and again at the age of five when their permanent teeth may begin to erupt.

You may see your child grinding their teeth during the day as well as while they sleep.

The following are a few possible explanations:

  • Misaligned teeth
  • Uses teeth grinding to relieve pain from teething.
  • Certain medical conditions such as cerebral palsy.
  • Sign of stress of anxiety.

It would be best to talk to your pediatric dentist about this.

Effects of Bruxism

Teeth grinding is not generally considered a hazardous habit, and it is something that most toddlers outgrow. A parent’s worry about their child’s grinding sound may be the greatest “impact.”

Other youngsters may experience jaw pain as a result of teeth grinding. A lot of rubbing of the jaw can indicate discomfort, even if your infant can’t express it.

However, if you have any queries or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact us. If you notice any of the indicators listed below, it’s time to get your child’s teeth grinding evaluated by a dentist:

  • Jaw pain
  • Headaches
  • Tooth sensitivity
  • Signs of tooth wear
  • Loud and persistent grinding

Stopping My Child From Teeth Grinding

As long as your child isn’t experiencing any major side effects like those listed above, you can attempt the following strategies to minimize or eradicate bruxism on your own without seeing a dentist:

  • Relax your child’s muscles by getting a massage or doing stretches.
  • Make sure your child consumes a lot of water.
  • Preparing your child for bedtime can help alleviate some of their anxiety.
  • Some children may need a nightguard to prevent the grinding.
  • Always consult with your dentist.

Read More: Can Toddlers Wear a Mouth Guard?

Contact Junior Smiles of Stafford to know more about teeth grinding in children

You may be concerned about your child’s nighttime teeth grinding, which is understandable. However, for further information on your child’s teeth grinding, it is critical to see the most trusted pediatric dentist. We have the experience and equipment to make your child’s dental visits enjoyable and stress-free.

Read Next: Can Pacifiers Really Damage Teeth?

Why Choose Junior Smiles of Stafford?

Our Stafford, VA team is well-versed in working with clients of various ages and backgrounds. They’ll take the time to get to know you and your family’s requirements, and they’ll work with you to design a treatment plan that suits your schedule. Sealants and fluoride treatments are just two of the many preventative care options we provide to keep your mouth healthy.

About Us

Visiting Junior Smiles of Stafford means you’re in good hands when it comes to receiving high-quality care. Your child’s dental health improves with each visit, ensuring a brighter smile for years to come. We adhere to the ADA and AAPD’s guidelines for best practices. 

Where Are We Located?

963 Garrisonville Rd #103

Stafford, VA 22556

Phone: (540) 699-2441

Fax: (540) 699-2464

Email: info@juniorsmilesofstafford.com

Monday and Tuesday: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM

Wednesdays and Thursdays: 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Fridays and Saturdays: 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM (By appointment only)

How to Book Your Kids First Appointment at Junior Smiles of Stafford

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