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Keywords:

  • bruxism;
  • heredity;
  • systematic review

Summary

People who suffer from bruxism (teeth-grinding) often ask their dentists whether their condition is hereditary. The purpose of this study is to enable dentists to provide an ‘evidence-based’ answer to this question. The biomedical literature was searched using PubMed, and 32 publications were identified, of which nine proved relevant to the research question. The references cited by the publications identified yielded one further publication, bringing the total number of publications included in the analysis to 10. Four publications related to family studies, five related to twin studies and one related to a DNA analysis. With the exception of one of the twin studies, all the included studies concluded that bruxism appears to be (in part) genetically determined. Dentists whose patients ask them about bruxism can therefore tell them that teeth-grinding does indeed ‘run in families’.