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A novel biomechanical model assessing continuous orthodontic archwire activation

Authors
Journal
American Journal of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics
0889-5406
Publisher
Elsevier
Volume
143
Issue
2
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/j.ajodo.2012.06.019
Disciplines
  • Medicine
  • Physics

Abstract

Introduction The biomechanics of a continuous archwire inserted into multiple orthodontic brackets is poorly understood. The purpose of this research was to apply the birth-death technique to simulate the insertion of an orthodontic wire and the consequent transfer of forces to the dentition in an anatomically accurate model. Methods A digital model containing the maxillary dentition, periodontal ligament, and surrounding bone was constructed from computerized tomography data. Virtual brackets were placed on 4 teeth (central and lateral incisors, canine, and first premolar), and a steel archwire (0.019 × 0.025 in) with a 0.5-mm step bend to intrude the lateral incisor was virtually inserted into the bracket slots. Forces applied to the dentition and surrounding structures were simulated by using the birth-death technique. Results The goal of simulating a complete bracket-wire system on accurate anatomy including multiple teeth was achieved. Orthodontic forces delivered by the wire-bracket interaction were 19.1 N on the central incisor, 21.9 N on the lateral incisor, and 19.9 N on the canine. Loading the model with equivalent point forces showed a different stress distribution in the periodontal ligament. Conclusions The birth-death technique proved to be a useful biomechanical simulation method for placement of a continuous archwire in orthodontic brackets. The ability to view the stress distribution with proper anatomy and appliances advances our understanding of orthodontic biomechanics.

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