US 3385291 A
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May 28, 1968 L, G,'MART|N 3,385,291
DENTAL DEVICE Filed Dec. 20, 1965 FIG.2
LEONARD (5. MARTIN INVENTOR Me I BY ATTORNEY United States Patent Oflice 3,385,291 Patented May 28, 1968 3,385,291 DENTAL DEVICE Leonard G. Martin, 1 Roseld Ave, Deal, NJ. 07723 Filed Dec. 20, 1965, Ser. No. 515,033 8 Claims. (Cl. 128--62) This invention relates to a dental device for teeth and gums which may be worn at night or at any other time when not eating or talking. It has special reference to a means for correcting many of the deformities and malformations which may occur in the jaw and the gums and is also useful in applying many forms of medication.
Many forms of impressions have been made by dentists in order to manufacture bridges and other types of dentures. These impressions have been constructed with various types of moldable plastics which may include alginates, rubber, silicone, wax, and plaster. The present device is somewhat similar to these impressions but is made for an entirely different purpose. Instead of being employed for the construction of dentures, the device may be given to the patient to be used at night or any other convenient time for treating the teeth and the gums. The device has many novel features which will be described in detail later.
One of the objects of this invention is to provide an improved device for the teeth which avoids one or more of the disadvantages and limitations of other appliances for the teeth.
Another object of the invention is to massage the gums. In this connection it is used with non-abrasive materials which help to prevent irritation and recession of the gums.
Another object of the invention is to move selected teeth to a desired position by relieving portions of the guard and then creating desired pressures by biting the guard.
Another object of the invention is to apply medication for many diseases such as pyorrhea. When medication is applied for any means it helps prevent dilution by saliva.
Another object of the invention is to apply a topical anesthetic which may be in the form of a cream, gel, or paste. This application is made prior to cutting the gums or scraping the teeth.
Another object of the invention is to aid in making a temporary bridge in an emergency when a tooth or teeth have been extracted.
Another object of the invention is to help set the jaw bones when the jaw has been fractured or to immobilize teeth when a tooth or teeth are loosened.
Another object of the invention is to prevent grinding the teeth while sleeping, also to prevent lip biting and mouth breathing, tongue thrusting, cheek biting, and thumb sucking.
The invention includes a device for the teeth having an upper and lower channel which partially surrounds the teeth. A rubber like material is positioned on the inside of each channel and is molded to conform with the gums and the sides of the teeth. The biting surfaces of the teeth are protected by a laminar insert which includes a central piece of lead foil and an upper and lower covering of thermoplastic material. The laminar sheet is inserted between the two channels which may be open along their horizontal portions or partially enclosed. After the impression has been made, the laminar sheets are trimmed at their edges, if necessary.
For a better understanding of the present invention, together with other and further objects thereof, reference is made to the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings.
FIG. 1 is a plan view of the guard showing the negative impressions left by the teeth.
FIG. 2 is a side view of the guard shown in FIG. 1.
FIG. 3 is a cross sectional view, to an enlarged scale, of the guard shown in FIG. 1 and is taken along line 3-3 of that figure. This cross sectional view shows the guard with the laminar sheet in place and with the impression material in the channels before the impression has been made.
FIG. 4 is a cross sectional view similar to FIG. 3 but shows the position of the impression filling and the laminar sheet after an impression has been made.
Referring now to the figures, the guard comprises two channels 10 and 11 hinged or otherwise attached at their rear ends 12. The channels may be first formed with a slot between the upper and lower portions, and then, just before an impression is to be made a laminar sheet 13 is inserted into the slot, or the entire unit with the laminar sheet may be prefabricated. The laminar sheet includes a central sheet 14 of lead or aluminum foil. Alloys of these materials may be used but it is preferable to have this sheet made of some form of flexible metal. On either side of the metal foil there are sheets 15 and 16 of a thermoplastic material such as a bite wax. Just before the impression is to be made, this laminar sheet may be heated to a temperature which is above the molding temperature of sheets 15 and 16, if necessary. The channels 10 and 11 are partly filled with a rubber like material such as Softex or Silastic, silicon elastomer selfsetting impression materials obtainable commercially from the Dow Corning Corporation.
FIG. 3 shows the upper and lower impression materials 17 and 18 before the impression has been made. It should be noted that a window 20 has been cut out of the hori zontal portion of channel 10 and a similar window 21 has been removed from the upper horizontal portion of channel 11. These windows are substantially closed by the laminar sheet 13.
The impression is made by the individual who is to use the device. The device is inserted into the mouth and the user bites into the impression material in such a manner that the front teeth on the upper jaw overlap the front teeth on the lower jaw. This position is illustrated in FIG. 4 whereby a cavity 22 is formed by the front upper teeth and a corresponding cavity 23 is formed by the front teeth of the lower jaw. This type of bite draws some of the laminar material 13 into the channel window space, especially in the front part of the mouth. After the impression is made and the plastics have had a chance to harden, the device is removed from the mouth and the excess portion of the impression materials 17 and 18 is removed from the edge of the channels 10 and 11.
The dental device described above is not to be used to make dentures but may be taken with the patient and employed for the uses described in the objects stated above. When the device is finished, the teeth and gums fit into an accurate impression area. However, there is sufficient resiliency in the materials so that the device may be employed as an exerciser by alternately clenching and relaxing the jaws with the dental device in position. This type of exercise is particularly desirable for those patients suffering from lack of function of gums and teeth.
The dental device has been shown and described as a complete double channel device. It should be noted that, for some patients, only an upper or a lower channel is necessary and, in some cases, only a portion of an upper or lower channel need be used.
The dental device can be used with ultrasonic generators, electrolyti currents, and external vibratory devices for various therapeutic treatments.
The foregoing disclosure and drawings are merely illustrative of the principles of this invention and are not to be determined from the scope of the appended claims.
1. A dental device for teeth and gums comprising, an upper channel shaped to partly surround the teeth in an upper jaw, a lower channel shaped to partly surround the teeth in a corresponding low jaw, said channels made of substantially rigid material and joined to each other at their ends, said channels having cut-out slots in their horizontal portions, a laminar sheet positioned adjoining said slots for receiving the impressions of a set of teeth, and a moldable resilient material partially filling the upper and lower channels, said resilient material in the channels adapted to receive and retain the impressions of a set of teeth and adjoining gums.
2. A dental device as claimed in claim 1 wherein said laminar sheet includes a central sheet of metal foil.
3. A dental device as claimed in claim 1 wherein said laminar sheet includes a central sheet of lead foil and an upper and lower sheet of thermoplastic material.
4. A dental device as claimed in claim 1 wherein said laminar sheet includes a central sheet of aluminum foil.
5. A dental device as claimed in claim 1 wherein said like resiliency when set.
6. A dental device as claimed in claim 1 wherein the channels are rnade to a thermal setting material such as phenol formaldehyde.
7. A dental device as claimed in claim 1 wherein said channels are formed so that the horizontal portions of the upper and lower channels form a narrow slot for receiving the laminar sheetprior to the impression.
8. A dental device as claimed in claim 1 wherein a sealing compound covers the edges of the laminar sheet, sealing the laminar sheet to the upper and lower channels.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS T,818,146 8/1931 Maker 128--62XR 2,590,118 3/1952 Odd o 128--136 3,103,217 9/1963 Butleretal 128136 LAWRENCE W. TRAPP, Primary Examiner;