The Ins and Outs of Baby Grinding Teeth: What Should Parents Do?

Is your baby grinding their teeth?

It surely is a major milestone when your little one starts teething. However, teething could also result in a few issues. For instance, some babies start to gnash their teeth together, whether they are awake or asleep.

When a baby starts teething, you might notice them grinding their teeth together. Also known as bruxism, teeth grinding is nothing a dentist has not seen before. In fact, 30 to 20 percent of children show signs of teeth grinding or jaw clenching due to various reasons, with stress being the primary cause.

But what else is responsible for teeth grinding among babies? In this blog, we will talk about bruxism in children and all you need to know about it.

Why is My Baby Grinding Their Teeth?

If your baby is grinding their teeth, it could indicate a number of factors. Initially, only a few teeth erupt, and they are not enough to make contact with each other. This might cause the child to gnash their existing teeth together. Discomfort, too, is a common cause of bruxism in toddlers. Hence, your baby might grind their teeth if their teeth are misaligned. Other than this, stress and pain also cause the baby to clench their teeth together. Toddlers often grind their teeth together to ease their ear aches or headaches.

Signs Your Child Has Bruxism

Since babies cannot communicate their discomfort, parents often do not notice bruxism in children until visible signs appear. You might hear your child gnashing their teeth while they are asleep. But you do not have to wait for the audible bruxism symptoms to show up; you can keep an eye out for the following signs your baby is grinding their teeth:

  • Repeated jaw tightening or clenching motions.
  • Crying at meal times due to tooth sensitivity to hot and cold foods.
  • Injuries related to teeth.
  • Baby’s gums look swollen.
  • Audible grinding sounds, especially while the baby is asleep.

What are the Risks of Baby Grinding Teeth?

You should visit a pediatric dentist to know for sure if your baby is grinding their teeth. If left unnoticed, grinding teeth can have both short-term and long-term consequences.
The short-term effects of toddler grinding teeth include:

  • Headaches
  • Muscle aches
  • Sensitive teeth
  • Pain when chewing

However, this is not where it ends. Bruxism in children can have the following long-term effects:

  • Chipped teeth
  • Flattened teeth
  • Temporomandibular Joint Disorder or TMD

How to Get Baby to Stop Grinding Teeth

Although bruxism has its list of side effects, it is not essentially a serious issue, given that the baby receives adequate treatment. In most cases, the baby outgrows teeth grinding on their own. You can, however, help ease their condition by trying a few soothing techniques. You can give your baby teething toys to help relieve their discomfort. Other than this, you should always visit a pediatric dentist since they can offer proper treatment based on the baby’s condition.


In short, it is quite normal for a baby to start grinding their teeth. The good news is: your pediatric dentist can offer adequate treatment before the bruxism causes severe consequences.

Our experts at Vintage Smile Family Dentistry can help prevent you and your baby from experiencing dental issues and offer suitable treatments. Talk to us now at (281) 251-7770 or visit us at 10300 Louetta Rd Ste 132, Houston, TX 77070, United States.


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