Bruxism is when a patient excessively grinds their teeth and clenches their jaw.
Symptoms that are commonly associated with bruxism include, hypersensitive teeth, aching jaw muscles, headaches, tooth wear, damage to dental restorations and damage to teeth.
Causes of bruxism are not completely understood, but probably involve multiple factors. Awake bruxism is thought to have different causes than sleep bruxism.
Patients with bruxism can be difficult to treat with clear aligners. The clinician must be aware that bruxism can cause the buccal and lingual surfaces of the aligners to flare away from the tooth, reducing the aligner's ability to effectively move the teeth.
As the clinician you should be on the alert for heavy occlusion and bruxism as these situations tend to impair tooth movement and produce excessive wear on the occlusal surface of the aligner.