Purpose: The purpose of this study was to propose finite element (FE) modeling methods for predicting stress distributions on teeth and mandible under chewing action. Materials and Methods: For FE model generation, CT images of skull were translated into 3D FE models, and static analysis was performed considering linear material behaviors and nonlinear geometrical effect. To find out proper boundary and loading conditions, parametric studies were performed with various areas and directions of restraints and loading. The loading directions are prescribed to be same as direction of masseter muscle, which was referred from anatomy chart and CT image. From the analysis, strain and stress distributions of teeth and mandible were obtained and compared with experimental data for model validation. Results: As a result of FE analysis, the optimized boundary condition was chosen such that 8 teeth were fixed in all directions and condyloid process was fixed in all directions except for forward and backward directions. Also, fixing a part of mandible in a lateral direction, where medial pterygoid muscle was attached, gave the more proper analytical results. Loading was prescribed in a same direction as masseter muscle. The tendency of strain distributions between the teeth predicted from the proposed model were compared with experimental results and showed good agreements. Conclusion: This study proposes cost efficient FE modeling method for predicting stress distributions on teeth and mandible under chewing action. The proposed modeling method is validated with experimental data and can further be used to evaluate structural safety of dental prosthesis.
- Finite element analysis
- Stress distribution