It is critical to clarify orthodontic load transfer mechanism from tooth to alveolar bone, and to determine the influence of applied orthodontic force on tooth behaviour. In this study, two dimensional (2-D) finite element (FE) models were constructed to simulate to mechanical behaviour observed during the initial movement of periodontal ligament (PDL) deformation, and to evaluate the effects of the presence of PDL and various restraint sites on tooth behaviour.
A 2-D solid FE model of the tooth-PDL-alveolar bone system was constructed and investigated into stress distribution pattern and displacement. The first analysis was carried out with combinations of FE model with and without PDL. The second analysis was compared with three different sites restraint of alveolar bone.
By incorporating PDL in FE models, excessively large stress values and deformation generated in a tooth and alveolar bone were relieved. Since restraint conditions did not affect a tooth and PDL, but had an effect on alveolar bone, orthodontic force necessary for tooth displacement was transmitted correctly. The results of this study revealed that inclusion of PDL in FE models is indispensable to transmit orthodontic force appropriately when investigating tooth behaviour for orthodontic treatment. Restrained sites affected stress distribution in alveolar bone.
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