Splinting is a technique used to stabilize loose teeth to their adjacent healthy teeth. It is applied to a group of teeth or on the whole dental arch (upper or lower). Depending on the type of fixation (gluing) to the teeth, there are two main types – mobile (removable) or fixed (non-removable) appliances. They are used in inflammatory diseases of the periodontium with tooth mobility Grade II, in loose teeth or lost teeth due to injuries. They can be made of metal, plastic or glass fibers.

The non-removable braces are used in loose teeth due to periodontal disease. Prior to the splinting, thorough cleaning of tartar and dental plaque is necessary to prevent the reduction of the strength of the braces. A new and very successful method is splinting with glass fibers and composite. It provides good stabilization of the loose teeth, and it is also highly aesthetic because the retainers are very thin, located from the side of the tongue, and the colour is the same as the patient’s teeth. The production of this type of retainer is done entirely in the dental practice. Firstly a rubber/dental dam (a special sheet which isolates the teeth from the saliva in the mouth) is placed, secondly the required length of the glass fiber is measured and then splinting is carried out. Using the etching solution, the surfaces of the teeth are coated from the side of the tongue, washed, dried and a relevant bond is applied (an adhesive for the glass fiber). Using special instruments the fiber is placed and coated with a liquid photopolymer, which solidifies under a photo lamp, resulting in the glass fiber being fixed on teeth.
Once the retainer is ready, it can be corrected and polished. Patients become accustomed quickly to this type of appliances and forget about their existence.

Another commonly used type of non-removable appliances are metal-ceramic bridges or block crowns. They are used in severe periodontitis, and when there is loss of teeth. They properly redistribute the chewing forces and have a lasting effect. They are a good choice for missing teeth and teeth that are much damaged. Bridges and crowns solve simultaneously three problems – eliminate the mobility of the teeth, and restore the missing teeth and the natural beauty of the smile. Their only downside is that they require preparation of the teeth.

The removable appliances are used in trauma or knocked-out teeth. They are used for temporary fixation of teeth and after recovery they are removed. They can be made of plastic. They are easily made after taking an impression, but are bulky and unhygienic. In knocked-out teeth or broken jaws, metal splints from ligature wire are fabricated. They hold most commonly both jaws. They are not aesthetic and make it difficult to maintain good hygiene. They are removed after fracture recovery.

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