Teeth-grinding in teenagers could possibly suggest that they are being bullied at school or elsewhere, according to a new research.
The study, published in the Journal of Oral Rehabilitation, revealed that teenagers who experience verbal bullying are prone to suffer from teeth-grinding and sleep bruxism as compared to others.
That equated to 65% among the bullied students, compared to 17% among the others. Researchers studied the experiences of more than 300 teenagers in Brazil.
Dr Nigel Carter, from the Oral Health Foundation, said “Grinding teeth may not sound like a priority within the wider picture, but it could prove to give a vital insight into a child’s state of mind and could be an important sign for us to identify bullying at an earlier stage.”
He said sleep bruxism could be particularly damaging – but people were often unaware they were doing it. “The first people know of it is usually when they wake up their sleeping partner,” Dr Carter said.
Moreover, teeth-grinding may also lead to headaches, worn-down teeth and disrupted sleep, point out experts. The sound of grinding has even been compared to the noise from a circular saw.