Doctor Darryl Lung Talks about Full Mouth Reconstructions
When I talk about a full mouth reconstruction, it’s because you do have to put everything together all in one. And that means, making sure the mandible works in function with the maxilla, the lower working function with the upper. In relation to the muscles of mastication and to your lips and to your smile and everything else, so it all becomes inclusive. If you’re trying to, and I like to use the word patch, certain aspects of your dentition and do one thing here, one thing here, one thing here. It’s going to be a conglomeration, or I call patchwork or hopscotch, of teeth being made, but they don’t properly look good or they function as one. So when it comes time to do a full mouth reconstruction, in my estimation, it’s got to be all or none. Patients who’ve had, for instance, erosion, attrition, abrasion, or fractures, or loss of teeth, where they’ve lost what we call vertical dimension. Vertical dimension is the distance between the mandible and the maxilla and the overall smile and functionality of your teeth. When patients get older, they have that look where they’re scrunched. The teeth have been worn down or there’s loss of teeth and that’s called the loss of the vertical dimension overall of the face. And when you have that happen, you have to change the vertical dimension to put them back to a new position that they were, more or less, when they were grown adults. And when you reconstruct that, you’re able to not only change the smile, but you’re also changing the functionality of making the patient whole, again. That’s the bottom line with full mouth reconstruction.