My daughter is 16 months old, and keeps grinding her teeth. Does anyone have ideas for stopping it?

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Paula - posted on 02/07/2010

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Okay does your daughter do it in her sleep? my son did it for a little while but only while he was awake and I dont know about you but that noise makes my skin crawl...gives me the heebeegeebees.....Anyways...my son would walk around doing it and everytime I could catch him doing i would put my finger (clean) in his mouthand touched his teeth gently to make him stop... but i asked him nicely to stop first...he stopped doing it...I know it sounds bad but the dentist is expensive and he figured out it bothered me so he would do it and laugh..lol

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Jeanette - posted on 12/03/2012

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Shell - posted on 11/26/2012

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Really?! One of the other mother's above flicks her child in the mouth to stop him?! CPS should have been called on her!

Kaite - posted on 02/21/2010

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I do not have any dental background, however I am a myomassologist (specialized massage therapist). I used to specialize in prenatal and infant massage, so naturally I tend to try easiest, at home, hollistic fixes with myself and my toddler *23 mos old* before I will let anyone medically intervene. The muscles used to grind teeth are muscles that are also engaged during temper tantrums to make angry faces. My son started grinding at about 13 months old, and then stopped for a while..and started again around 15 months. If you can get them to lay still long enough, you can lay his head in your lap, and rub light/medium pressure circles on the connection point for the lower and upper jaws. (If you clench your teeth you will feel where the 'belly' of the muscle is) Focus on that part of the muscle on him, and do this often. If this muscle is tight *even from just occasional grinding* it can lead to continued grinding, and potentially TMJ symptoms in the future..Not only should it help the grinding of the teeth, but it can also help to avoid the TMJ symptoms that often begin to occur in "grinders"...

Hope this helps, if you want me to try to explain it better, or to give you other infant/child massage options for this, shoot me an email and I'd be happy to answer any questions.

My toddler has been recieving infant massage since birth, and during his heart surgery recovery. He has become a sucker for it, but it does help with a lot of things with children.

Heather - posted on 02/21/2010

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I also work for a pediatric dentist, one that is part of a corporation of dental practices so we receive plenty of calls from General dentists. 16 months is waaaay too young for a biteguard, they could dislodge after just a couple of months and result in choking in the sleep because their mouths are constantly changing.



Typically children do "out-grow" the issue. Definently start seeing a pediatric dentist though because this can increase the likelyhood of cavities due to enamel wear. The dentist may apply "sealants" if the enamel is really low but be advised United Concordia (tri-care dental active duty) DOES NOT cover sealants on baby teeth depending on the city and practitioner they can range betwenn $25 and $50 per tooth. But your first and regular 6 month visits are covered at 100% so please dont let cost keep you from seeing a dentist. A good one will help you utilize your dental benefits at a greater benefit to you and lower out-of-pocket. DO NOT use pro-namel tooth paste on a 16 month old, if they swallow it you will end up calling poison control and depending on the amount swallowed a wonderful trip to the ER. The flouride levels are high and other non-active chemicals in that toothpaste arent safe for that age.

Michele - posted on 02/21/2010

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I would take her to the dentist. I used to work for a pediatric dentish and they recommended kids begin seeing a dentist with their 1st tooth to get them used to going. There could be several reasons she's doing it, but it's best to let a dental professional access the problem and insure she's not causing any damage to her teeth. Good Luck!

Vicki - posted on 02/19/2010

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My son is 17 mo old and he does it all the time. I started flicking his mouth, it doesn't hurt him, he stops after. Their teeth are sensitive at this age, so he'll feel it without it causing any REAL pain. He doesn't do it as much now that he's older, he used to do it all the time, and it drove me bananas!

Lyndsey - posted on 02/08/2010

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I asked my mother in law and my sons doctor about this because my 16month old son does it also. They said it is their way of bringing in new teeth. They will always do it (and most grow out of it), but it is worse when they are teething. The noise its self drives me crazy, but you just have to learn to tune it out, or thats what I was told. I still haven't found away to make him stop when he does do it, but if he isn't teething he doesn't really do it that often. Hopes this helps a bit.

Susan - posted on 02/08/2010

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my son is almost 8 and still does it. I have taken him to the dentist and they just keep saying he will grow out of it. I am a grinder to and I wear a night guard, but they can't make them for kids because their mouths grow so quickly. brush her teeth with a sensitivity tooth paste if her teeth get sensitive to cold and hot. My dentist also recommended using Pro-namel tooth paste as it helps with acid wear which grinding makes worse.

C. - posted on 02/07/2010

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I would take her to the dentist and ask them. My oldest sister used to grind her teeth and had to wear a mouth guard to bed, but she was older than 16m. I don't know what they'd do with such a young child, but they should be able to do something. Good luck!

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