Signs and symptoms of bruxism may include:

  • Teeth grinding or clenching, which may be loud enough to awaken your sleep partner
  • Teeth that are worn down, flattened, fractured or chipped
  • Worn tooth enamel, exposing deeper layers of your tooth
  • Increased tooth sensitivity
  • Jaw pain or tightness in your jaw muscles
  • Tired jaw muscles
  • Earache — because of severe jaw muscle contractions, not a problem with your ear
  • Headache
  • Chronic facial pain
  • Damage from chewing on the inside of your cheek
  • Indentations on your tongue

When to see a doctor

See your doctor or dentist if:

  • Your teeth are worn, damaged or sensitive
  • You have pain in your jaw, face or ear
  • Others complain that you make a grinding noise while you sleep

If you notice that your child is grinding his or her teeth — or has other signs or symptoms of this condition — be sure to mention it at your child's next dentist appointment.

May. 19, 2011