TMJ Guide

Grinding Teeth With Methylphenidate:

Grinding teeth – medically termed Bruxism, is a multifactorial condition that exhibits symptoms of teeth grinding and (or) teeth clenching either during sleep times at night or as a diurnal habit that is carried on both during nights as well as day times.


Grinding teeth with methylphenidate has been recently established as a possibility that involves the increased occurrence of teeth grinding in patients who are under treatment for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity disorder (ADHA) and using the drug methylphenidate.


The relation of teeth grinding and methylphenidate


Attention Deficit Hyperactivity disorder (ADHA) is a condition that is characterized by uncontrolled hyperactivity or impulsiveness and difficulty of focusing on anything. This syndrome is typically manifested in children and psycho stimulant drugs are used as treatment to deal with this condition. Amongst such drugs, the anti depressant methylphenidate is commonly used as the preferred medication.


Controlled studies done on ADHA subjects has brought to light the fact that on ADHA patients undergoing treatment with the use of medication involving the drug methylphenidate, the occurrence of teeth grinding has been seen to be markedly more than on subjects not using the medication. It has therefore been recognized that – pharmacologically treated ADHA subjects showed higher instances of occurrence of Bruxism symptoms compared to ADHA subjects not taking medicines; and within the ADHA group taking medications of methylphenidate the symptoms disappeared after discontinuation of the drug – as reported in the Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology. October 2008, 18(5): 537-538


Prevention of teeth grinding with methylphenidate


Prevention of the occurrence of or increase of teeth grinding activity with the use of the drug methylphenidate requires immediate cessation of the drug and consultations with a specialist to examine the condition as well as to determine an alternative course of action for treating the primary ADHA syndrome.


Secondly, there is a possibility that the drug methylphenidate has actually exaggerated an already existing condition of teeth grinding. In this case, an examination is called for in order to correctly identify the root causes of the teeth grinding habit.


The causes of teeth grinding can be many and unless the real causes are addressed in the right manner, the habit of teeth grinding can manifest into a chronic condition that can go on to cause severe damage to teeth and overall health.


Teeth grinding is best treated with a holistic approach that attends to the entire body’s fitness and uses natural ways of healing.


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