Purpose: The purpose of this study was to determine the prevalence of childhood bruxism and associated correlates, as reported by parents.
Methods: A cross-sectional survey of parents was conducted at 4 private pediatric dental offices and the Children's Hospital Boston Dental Clinic. Data were gathered via a self-administered questionnaire offered to the parents of children under age 17. Factors were evaluated for association with bruxism using chi-square tests and multivariate logistic regression.
Results: Based on 854 surveys analyzed, the children's mean age was 8.1 years and 52% were female. Caucasians represented 87% of the population, and 90% of the parents had attained a high school diploma. The overall prevalence of reported bruxism was 38%. Five percent of the parents reported that their children had subjective symptoms of temporomandibular disorder (TMD); however, these were not associated with reported bruxism. A child with a psychological disorder had a 3.6 times greater likelihood of bruxism. If either parent had a history of bruxism, their child was 1.8 times more likely to brux. If bedroom doors were open, parents reported bruxism 1.7 times more often. Children who drooled at night were 1.7 times more likely to brux, while sleeptalking children were 1.6 times more likely to brux.
Conclusions: (1) Of the 38% of parents reporting that their children brux, familial history, open bedroom doors, drooling, sleeptalking, and psychological disorders were significantly associated with the reported bruxism. (2) While 5% of parents reported that their children had at least one TMD symptom, no TMD symptoms were associated with reported bruxism.