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Dental and Oral Health (Children)

Teeth grinding during sleep

08/29/2008

Question:

My 4 1/2 year old son grinds his teeth during sleep and this is more often when he has fever kindly advise me as to what is to be done?

Answer:

Your question about your preschool-age son's tooth grinding ("bruxism") is the most common question I get from parents of children in my practice. Many children grind their baby (primary) teeth, even to the point of keeping their parents awake at night! The good news is that in the huge majority of cases this habit has no negative consequences and is usually abandoned when the permanent teeth erupt. It is not uncommon to see the biting surfaces of the baby teeth somewhat "flattened" by the grinding, but again, this rarely has negative consequences.

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Response by:

Dennis J McTigue, DDS Dennis J McTigue, DDS
Professor of Pediatric Dentistry
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University