from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun The habitual, involuntary grinding or clenching of the teeth, usually during sleep.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun The habit or practice of grinding of the teeth, as while sleeping, or due to stress or certain drugs.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun involuntarily or unconsciously clenching or grinding the teeth, typically during sleep


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[From New Latin brūxis, a gnashing, from Greek brūkein, to gnash.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Derived from Ancient Greek βρυγμός (brygmós, "grinding [teeth]") +‎ -ism.


Help support Wordnik (and make this page ad-free) by adopting the word bruxism.


  • While most people clench or grind their teeth (a condition known as bruxism) from time to time, about 10% suffer from TMJ problems -- and those can set in suddenly.

    The Daily Grind: When Stress Sets Your Teeth on Edge

  • Grinding of the teeth and clenching of the jaws during sleep, otherwise known as bruxism, is a common condition for adults who want to release tension.

    Article Ace

  • Clenching and grinding, also called "bruxism," puts hundreds of pounds of pressure on tooth surfaces.


  • Skip to next paragraph Enlarge This Image Victoria Roberts A. Grinding the teeth while asleep is just one kind of bruxism, a disorder that also includes daytime Scientists have claimed that the transmission of abnormal proteins that form - Business News

  • They described the teeth-grinding as "bruxism" and I thought that they could probably figure out if I need some kind of treatment for that, if nothing else.

    Silicon Valley Moms Blog

  • Most people who have listened to soothing music, used aromatherapy or taken a long relaxing bath before going to bed, have shown significant improvement in the bruxism condition.

    Spark plugs and transmissions

  • Parasomni - means sleep walking, sudden spasms, bruxism and sleep paralysis.

    Do you have trouble to sleep?

  • He's extracted the dentition for detailed views of Meresamun's jaws and teeth, which were severely ground down by the grit in Egyptian bread, and compared them with those from modern patients who grind their teeth, a condition known as bruxism.

    Getting By On Her Looks

  • Other causes of tooth abrasion, such as teeth grinding (bruxism), were addressed in his study.

    Suzette Standring: Too Much Toothpaste Damages Teeth

  • There are those who question whether the current bruxism craze isn't simply the '90s version of the TMJ diagnosis that peaked in the' 70s -- a catchall disorder that once kept dentists busy.

    I Hear America Grinding


Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • Teeth grinding--unpleasant definition, but the word itself

    has a great sound.

    February 14, 2007

  • JM grits his teeth and dreams of the high points of bruxism

    January 9, 2010

  • Bruxism is a finding during sleep that is characterized by clenching and grinding of the teeth. This can occur numerous times during a sleep session, and can cause sleep disruptions, as well as damage to the teeth. Bruxism most often occurs in the early stages of sleep before deep sleep.

    Bruxism can also happen unintentionally during waking hours, often as the result of stress or anger, but this is usually noticed within a few seconds by the subject.

    Bruxism, American Sleep Association

    May 18, 2016