17 answers

5 Year Old Grinding Teeth at Night.......

How do I stop it? "Adult" teeth arent in yet but I would like to stop the problem if possible before the adult teeth come in. HELP!

What can I do next?

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My son does this too. His pediatric dentist said it is quite common and nothing to worry about with the baby teeth. If it continues with adult teeth, you can fit him with a night guard.


"Mom on a Mission"

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I want to ask you to PLEASE find a dentist that will build a mouth piece for your child to get this behavior stopped as soon as possible. I too starting grinding my teeth as a child. They did not make mouth pieces then. The dentist assured my parents that I would grow out of it. I never did. There were times when I would wake up with bits of teeth in my mouth where I had ground(?) my teeth so hard. I would wake up some mornings with my ear/ears hurting from nothing more than grinding my teeth. That still happens on occasion. If not corrected, it can become a lifelong problem and result in some VERY costly dental bills. (My latest estimate is over $3000. Now that is from grinding my teeth as well as Acid Reflux and the acid eating away at my teeth, but still you can see where it can add up.) Not all dentists will go ahead and make the mouth piece, but I urge you to find one that will. Most children find the mouthpiece uncomfortable and will do anything not to have to where it at night. I can tell you that it does take a concentrated effort to not grind one's teeth. When my son started it as a young toddler, I started keeping him in bed with me and would wake up when I heard him doing it and would wake him up and have him stop grinding his teeth. It took a long time (over a year), but he no longer grinds his teeth. Sure wish I could have found a dentist to make a mouth piece for him rather than have him bruising me from head to toe sleeping with me. hHwever, we did get it accomplished, but not without some dental bills for four fillings where he ground the tops of his teeth off.

Good luck to you. And if you find a dentist that will make a mouth piece, please fill me in. I have another toddler now that hasn't started it, but would like to be prepared should she start it.

Oh! It seems, to me anyway, that the harder one chews their food, the more likely they are to grind. One dentist even told me that I need to quit chewing so hard and so does my son. So, I guess you can take that for what it's worth. I know that my son and I both chew pretty hard and firm. so, maybe there is something to that.

Again, good luck to you.

Hi E., You can Ask your pediatrician. Mine said not to worry with baby teeth, he will grow out of it, it's usually caused by some stress . He was right. M.

My son does this too. His pediatric dentist said it is quite common and nothing to worry about with the baby teeth. If it continues with adult teeth, you can fit him with a night guard.


"Mom on a Mission"

My 6 and 3-year olds grind their teeth really bad at night. They both have terrible allergies and their dentist says that they grind to relieve pressure. She said that they would probably outgrow this. We are going to keep a close eye on the problem and get mouthgaurds at a later time if needed. Good luck!

Hi E.:
Your dentist will tell you that this is normal. My son used to do the same thing. The dentist said it is actually good for them. It grinds the teeth down to fit better in their mouths.

Both my children do it too.. Anything you learn would be great!
I dont know how to stop it either

My son ground his teeth since he was 1 year old and still does. He is now 6 years old. He ground them so bad that he had to have crowns in all of his molars due to cavities and have had a root canal. We still cannot figure out what is causing this. He has special needs so most specialists think it is behavioral. He has had his adenoids removed, tubes put in his ears, etc. His grinding is less but is still happening. Now as his permanent teeth are coming in, we will look into having them sealed. So it is important that you figure out what is going on so he does not have to go through what my son have, a lot of dental surgeries.

No caffine after 5:00 and exercise the jaws before nite nite.

Hi E.,

Does your 5 year old have any other problems at night such as snoring, sweating or difficulty breathing. My now 5 year old girl starting grinding her teeth when she was 2 along with the other symptoms mentioned. It turned out that she had Sleep Apnea and didn't even know she was grinding her teeth. Her body was just too stressed about not sleeping well. I talked to her Pedi where we used to live and he assured me she would grow out of it. Once we moved here her new Pedi said it was textbook Sleep Apnea and referred us to an ENT specialist. Sure enough her tonsils were almost 3 times larger than they should be and she had surgery to take out her tonsils and adnoids. Thankfully she did not have to have tubes in her ears. As soon as she healed from the surgery the snoring and grinding her teeth stopped. If your 5 year old doesn't have the other symptoms this probably doesn't help much. But if so then I hope this helps.

I did not read all the posts,but sometimes the reason for children grinding teeth may be d/t pin worms? This used to be common childhood occurence not sure now as my children are all grown. I believe,if my memory serves me right,they are aquired from the dirt when children of course are playing outside.I know this is going to sound disgusting,but I am not pulling your leg.The way you used to detect them was they would come outside of the rectum at night-you would have to look and see when your child is sleeping.They are very small white worms, thus the name pinworms. If this is the case your pediatrician would prescribe I believe it was a one time dose of a med that would get rid of the worms. Hope this helps.

I have started to take homeopathic remedies (I was a skeptic until I took a remedy for migraines - and it worked better than the prescription medicine) They have stuff for the teeth grinding, if I believe. And it's mostly caused by stress...I did it when I was young. You also could get a bite plate. It's soft so it protects the teeth.

Go to 1-800homeopathy.com. They have remedies for everything including babies on up to elderly people. Even pregnant or recovering from pregnancy. And even pets! Try them out! It's amazing and not expensive. It's also not medicine (it's like herbal) and non addicting. And you can take it with medicine. Just take my advice and read up on it. It's worth it.


i am a dental hygienist and have seen lots of children who grind their teeth. it is very common for young kids to grind their teeth, and honestly as long as they are still in their primary (baby) teeth there really isnt anything you need to worry about. most children grow out of it once their adult teeth come in, the reason they are usually grinding in the first place is because there is somuch movement going on in their mouth that you cant see under the gums, involving all the adult teeth trying to move down, also primary teeth are flatter than permanent teeth so it is easier for them to grind. by the way my husband is a dentist and he agrees, there really is no reason to try and treat a young child who grinds, it would probably do more damage stressing the child out by trying to get him to wear something when they dont really understand what they are doing "wrong" but of course if you are still worried about it go have a consult with your dentist.

My son does it because of sinus problems. He has allergies and frequent sinus infections. The pediatrician put him on a nasal spray twice a day and it helps. You might want to check withe your pedi as well as your dentist.

Teeth grinding at that age is not uncommon. His/her teeth are still errupting and therefore the bite is ever changing. This is natures way of adjusting the occlusion. Five years of age is a little young for a mouthguard....but it is still a good idea of getting a dental exam. HTH!

I feel your pain, or I guess I should say I feel your childs pain. Regardless of the reason (and I think it quite reasonable to get a thorough physical and dental checkup) you need to preserve the teeth, even baby teeth. I suffer from this and apparently my parents were told there was nothing to do about it. At any rate a "professional dental" mouthpiece can run into the thousands and of course would need to be replaced frequently at your child's age. I was advised to look into this company called SleepRight. You may have seen ads in many magazines. Anyway, they work wonders for me, I still clench my teeth but no longer cause any damage, even to my dental work. Please go to www.sleepright.com I'd suggest the best one, they make them in many sizes and are quite helpful people.

Get a dentist to fit your child's teeth with a mouthguard to wear at night. It will relax his jaw and after a couple of weeks the jaw will have new muscle memory and reduce the grinding.

I am an adult that grinds my teeth in my sleep. My dentist suggested using a night guard....and actually perscribed a muscle relaxer for two weeks. Grinding teeth is not only bad for your teeth but it is also bad for your neck and shoulders.

I will be praying that your little one stops soon.

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