top of page


Bruxism in children is common. About 20% of children will develop this condition, more commonly known as teeth grinding, before the age of 11.

Your dentist may have diagnosed your child with bruxism or you may have noticed this behavior by observing your child. Parents concerned about their children's oral health tend to have the same questions about teeth grinding:
What causes teeth grinding in children? Which is the treatment?


Bruxism in children can involve grinding the teeth or clenching the jaw. It can also mean chewing while asleep. According to recent research, bruxism in children lasts about four seconds and can occur up to six times per hour.

Teeth grinding typically occurs while the child is asleep, most often during stage 2 sleep or during REM sleep.

Similar to bruxism in adults, it is a habit that often goes unnoticed until someone else points it out. Typically, parents will notice the condition first because they can hear the noises at night.

Bruxismo en niños
Bruxismo fisiológico


A pediatric dentist can officially diagnose a child with this condition. Some symptoms to look for and report to the dentist include:

  • Grinding noises at night.

  • Complaints of facial pain or pain in the lower jaw.

  • Frequent awakenings during the night.

The dentist can examine the child's teeth for excessive signs of wear to confirm their suspicions.


Bruxism can become a sleep disorder. This nocturnal condition can wake children several times during the night. Lack of sleep can lead to behavioral problems.

Grinding teeth at night can cause lack of attention, difficulty concentrating, and other behavioral issues throughout the day.

Children who grind their teeth at night do not get the rest they need.

Sonrisas saludables en niños


Most children will outgrow sleep bruxism, but still need to be monitored by the dentist. Grinding can dadd both primary and secondary teeth and affect current and future oral health.


The treatment approach may include monitoring and:



  • A night mouth guard provided by your dentist.

  • Sleep medicine in extreme cases, with prior consultation with the family's specialist doctor.

  • An examination by the pediatrician to determine underlying conditions.

  • A visit to a pediatric dentist or orthodontist to get braces if necessary.


A pediatric dentist can develop a plan to treat bruxism, stop teeth clenching, and help everyone.

Dentistas para Niños, Bebés y Adolescentes | CasaDens
bottom of page