Journal Article

Long-term stability of dental arch form in normal occlusion from 13 to 31 years of age

J Henrikson, M Persson and B Thilander

in The European Journal of Orthodontics

Published on behalf of European Orthodontics Society

Volume 23, issue 1, pages 51-61
Published in print February 2001 | ISSN: 0141-5387
Published online February 2001 | e-ISSN: 1460-2210 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ejo/23.1.51
Long-term stability of dental arch form in normal occlusion from 13 to 31 years of age

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Based on observations of longitudinal changes in dental arch dimensions, it has been stated that an individuality of arch form an integrity of this form exists. However, longitudinal studies evaluating arch form changes have rarely been reported in the literature. The purpose of this investigation was to use a computer-assisted method for the description and analysis of maxillary and mandibular arch form in a sample of normal occlusion subjects, and to evaluate the long-term stability in dental arch form from the age of 13-31 years.

The study was carried out on 30 subjects of Scandinavian origin with normal occlusion, recorded at a mean age of 13.6 years and at follow-up at 31.1 years. Arch form analysis was based on a standardized photographic procedure, digitization of morphological landmarks, and a computerized form analysis in which arch form was described using eccentricity values of conics. No specific arch form could be found to represent the sample. Age changes occurred in arch form, although with large individual variations. For the mandible, a significant change to a more rounded arch form with age was found, which in males was accompanied by a significant increase in inter-molar distance and reduction in arch depth. There was also a significant correlation between change in mandibular arch form and increased irregularity of the lower incisors. These findings of lack of stability in arch form in normal occlusion subjects, when passing from adolescence into adulthood, further question the possibility of achieving stability post-orthodontically.

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Restorative Dentistry and Orthodontics

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