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Am J Orthod Dentofacial Orthop. 1987 Dec;92(6):499-505.

Three-dimensional finite element analysis for stress in the periodontal tissue by orthodontic forces.

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Department of Orthodontics, Osaka University Faculty of Dentistry, Japan.


This study was designed to investigate the stress levels induced in the periodontal tissue by orthodontic forces using the three-dimensional finite element method. The three-dimensional finite element model of the lower first premolar was constructed on the basis of average anatomic morphology and consisted of 240 isoparametric elements. Principal stresses were determined at the root, alveolar bone, and periodontal ligament (PDL). In all loading cases for the buccolingually directed forces, three principal stresses in the PDL were very similar. At the surface of the root and the alveolar bone, large bending stresses acting almost in parallel to the root were generally observed. During tipping movement, stresses nonuniformly varied with a large difference from the cervix to the apex of the root. On the other hand, in case of movement approaching translation, the stresses induced were either tensile or compressive at all occlusogingival levels with some difference of the stress from the cervix to the apex. The pattern and magnitude of stresses in the periodontium from a given magnitude of force were markedly different, depending on the center of rotation of the tooth.

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