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Pediatric Dentistry/12 year old grinds teeth at night

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Question
Dear Dr. Saxe,
I have a 12 year old daughter who grinds her teeth at night while sleeping.  She has done this for many years.  I have mentioned it to our dentist and he didn't seem too concerned about it.  Recently I have noticed two of her teeth on one side, one being the canine and the other is the tooth preceding it, are ground down or look chipped.  The point is off of the canine tooth.  I was wondering what options there are - or if you have any suggestions or conservative measures we may try.  I know there are plastic mouthpieces available - but I am a bit leary of putting a plastic device in a child's mouth while sleeping for fear of choking.
Any help or suggestions would be greatley appreciated.  
Thank you so much for your time,
Maria Sebastian

Answer
If wear to the permanent teeth is occurring I would recommend 2 things:

Orthodontic evaluation to see if the grinding is due to bite issues

And evaluation for a mouth guard till grinding is corrected. these appliances cannot be swallowed are our one piece. They are safe if made by a professional (dentist).

Best Wishes

Pediatric Dentistry

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Michael D. Saxe D.M.D.

Expertise

All questions related to Pediatric Dentistry, Dental Growth, Dental Trauma, First Dental visit, Baby Bottle tooth Decay, Dental Sedation, Etc...

Experience

20 years private practice as a Pediatric Dentist, Staff at University Of Nevada School of Dental Medicine, Advanced Education Program in Pediatric Dentistry.

Organizations
ADA, AAPD, Nevada dental society, Clark County Dental Society, Cal. AAPD, Western society of Pediatric Dentistry, Southern Nevada CFA Team core member.

Publications
ASDC Journal

Education/Credentials
Washington University in Saint Louis, Dental School University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio, residency

Awards and Honors
Top pediatric Dental office 6 years in a row.

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