Grinding your teeth while you sleep can be harmless, if not a little worrying / annoying to anyone who observes it, but it can also cause headaches, earache, jaw pain and worn down teeth.
The vast majority of teeth grinding is associated with stress and anxiety. Those who clench their jaw tightly at times during the day may also grind their teeth at night.
It is recommended that those who grind their teeth avoid smoking, heavy drinking, recreational drugs, medication such as antidepressants and excessive caffeine.
Sleeping with a mouth guard can limit damage to teeth. To address the root causes sufferers may need to examine what’s creating stress in their life and seek to address these issues by themselves or with the help of others – partner, family, work colleagues or therapy such as CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy).
Children can grind their teeth. This is most often associated with growth of new teeth but can be attributed to stressful periods.