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Post-Operative Hyperocclusion

Post-operative hyperocclusion after placement of fillings in the posterior teeth.

Red marks produced by occlusal marking ribbon are used to help the dentist identify high spots in the patient’s bite after fillings and other new dental restorations are placed. The goal is an evenly balanced bite (occlusion).

Teeth which have recently undergone restorative dental procedures (crown, filling, etc.) may develop bite sensitivity afterwards. If the restoration was made in a lab, the problem may be that it is too large or does not fit quite right. Sometimes the problem may be caused by not adjusting the bite completely following the procedure, in which case the new restoration may be left with abnormally heavy bite forces on it. Localized numbness (anesthesia) can complicate the dentist’s ability to verify a proper bite relationship between the upper and lower teeth (occlusion), because a numb patient may not be able to provide reliable feedback.

Teeth are living tissue, and dental procedures are surgical in nature. So it’s also possible for fluid to accumulate in the periodontal ligament due to inflammation that may develop following procedures on the tooth. In these cases, the bite appears normal immediately following the procedure, but over the course of a few days following the procedure, the tooth begins to develop bite tenderness and may contact first when the patient closes together.

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Author: Thomas J. Greany, D.D.S. / Editor: Ken Lambrecht

This page was last updated on March 6, 2018.

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