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What Is the Importance of Biomechanics in Orthodontics?

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  • Written By: Erik J.J. Goserud
  • Edited By: PJP Schroeder
  • Images By: n/a, Lolostock
  • Last Modified Date: 26 August 2016
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Biomechanics and orthodontics are two words not usually coupled together. The science of biomechanics refers to the body in motion, while orthodontics is the dental specialty concerned with bite irregularity. These two seemingly unrelated terms can be linked together simply because biomechanics is applicable to any type of movement. There is movement involved in orthodontics, so biomechanics in orthodontics is of importance.

People working in the exciting field of biomechanics tend to view the human body as a machine. This may seem strange; however, this field can help prevent and treat injury, improve performance, and lead people to better lives in both productivity and happiness. Biomechanics in orthodontics may manifest itself in many ways. Perhaps a person's bite is off not due to teeth or jaw alignment but the actual movement made to close the mouth. Biomechanically analyzing this movement may help a person to improve his or her biting action, relieving the problem without surgical intervention.

Maybe an orthodontist has succumbed to chronic back problems after years of servicing others with his or her skills. This may appear to be unrelated to biomechanics in orthodontics, but taking another look reveals a different perspective. Recording the movements taken by this orthodontist throughout the day gives an important tool to a biomechanics researcher, enabling him or her to draw conclusions about the orthodontist.

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This orthodontist, experiencing lower back pain, spends the majority of his or her working life hunched over in order to better view a patient's mouth. Hours of this action a day over the course of many years could have caused traumatic stress to the lumbar area of the spine, resulting in crippling pain. The biomechanics researcher identifying this problem may offer a solution. It may involve purchasing an adjustable chair, allowing a patient to be raised and lowered accordingly to the preference of the orthodontist, helping alleviate the stress causing lower back pain.

This is one of the many examples of how biomechanics in orthodontics is important. Understanding biomechanics can help a person realize how applicable this science is to many other seemingly unrelated fields. Where there is movement, there is also room for improvement, and biomechanics in orthodontics is simply one of the many examples of this. Orthodontists, supporting employees, and the patients receiving oral care all can benefit from the new knowledge acquired through biomechanical research. Greater efficiency and performance in movement can help everyone live more productive and happy lives regardless of occupation.

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