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Title:
DENTAL WEDGE WITH SYMMETRICAL ENDS
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2016/028982
Kind Code:
A2
Abstract:
A dental wedge (10) is provided having a generally longitudinally extending planar wall (20) defining a longitudinal axis and a vertical axis, the planar wall (20) having a front surface (32) and a back surface (34) and generally defines an upper edge (22) and a lower edge (24), the front surface (32) of the planar wall (20) having a concave curve extending along the longitudinal axis of the planar wall (20), the front surface (32) of the planar wall (20) generally defining a restorative tooth side (12), and a planar flange (36) extends from the back surface (34) of the planar wall (20) at a location between the upper edge (22) and the lower edge (24), the planar flange (36) extending generally in a longitudinal direction along the back surface (34), the planar flange (36) includes an edge (38) which forms a shape similar to a wave, with a trough (52) of the wave (50) located about the vertical axis and two crests (48) formed on either side of the trough (52), whereby the back surface (34) of the planar wall (20) and the planar flange (36) form an adjacent tooth side (14) and the dental wedge is substantially symmetrical about the vertical axis and a whereby a horizontal plane extending tangentially at the edge (38) of the planar flange (36) and at the lower edge (24) of the planar wall (20) places the planar wall (20) in an inclined angle extending upward and inward.

Inventors:
MCDONALD SIMON PAUL (NZ)
AUBONE ALEJANDRO (NZ)
BACKLER MATTHEW (NZ)
Application Number:
US2015/046051
Publication Date:
February 25, 2016
Filing Date:
August 20, 2015
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
RHONDIUM IP LTD (NZ)
RHONDIUM CORP (US)
International Classes:
A61C5/12; A61C5/88
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
KENAGA, Michael, L. et al. (195 Arlington Heights Road Suite 12, Buffalo Grove IL, US)
Download PDF:
Claims:
We claim:

1 . A dental wedge (10) comprising:

a generally longitudinally extending planar wall (20) defining a longitudinal axis A-A' and a vertical axis B-B', the planar wall (20) having a front surface (32) and a back surface (34) and generally defines an upper edge (22) and a lower edge (24), the front surface (32) of the planar wall (20) having a concave curve extending along the longitudinal axis of the planar wall (20), the front surface (32) of the planar wall (20) generally defining a restorative tooth side (12); and a planar flange (36) extends from the back surface (34) of the planar wall (20) at a location between the upper edge (22) and the lower edge (24), the planar flange (36) extending generally in a longitudinal direction along the back surface (34), the planar flange (36) includes an edge (38) which forms a shape similar to a wave (50), with a trough (52) of the wave (50) located about the vertical axis and two crests (48) formed on either side of the trough (52), whereby the back surface (34) of the planar wall (20) and the planar flange (36) form an adjacent tooth side (14) and the dental wedge is substantially symmetrical about the vertical axis.

2. The dental wedge of claim 1 , wherein the front surface (32) of the planar wall (20) includes a concave curve extending in a vertical direction, and provides a smooth surface.

3. The dental wedge of claim 1 , wherein an upper portion (60) of the planar wall (20) tapers to provide a sharp upper edge (22).

4. The dental wedge of claim 1 , wherein the upper edge (22) of the planar wall (20) includes a recess (30) centrally located at approximately the vertical axis, wherein the recess (30) has a generally opened U-shape.

5. The dental wedge of claim 1 , wherein the planar flange (36) includes a substantially V-shaped notch (54) at approximately the vertical axis which forms the trough (52), and the edge (38) extends from the planar wall (20) at the trough (52) in a curved manner and through the crests (48).

6. The dental wedge of claim 1 , wherein the planar flange (36) includes an upper surface and a lower surface, a first and second abutment (58) are provided on the lower surface, each abutment is generally aligned with one of the crests (48) of the wave (50) formed by the planar flange (36), whereby the abutments (58) act as a stop for tweezers.

7. The dental wedge of claim 1 , wherein a side view of the dental wedge provides a disproportionate T-shape, formed by the upper edge (22) at the top and an inverted V-shape formed by the intersection of the planar flange (36) and planar wall (20).

8. The dental wedge of claim 1 , wherein the planar flange (36) extends downwardly from the planar wall (20) and a side view of the dental wedge provides an inverted V-shape formed by the intersection of the planar flange (36) and planar wall (20) and the inverted V- shape having an acute angle.

9. The dental wedge of claim 1 , wherein the planar flange (36) includes a first portion (40) and a second portion (42), the first portion (40) and second portion (42) each include an interproximal end (44) and an outer end (46), and wherein the first portion (40) and the second portion (42) extend downwardly in a gentle curved manner towards the respective interproximal end (44), forming an opened V-shape as viewed from the adjacent tooth side, and wherein the outer end (46) of the first portion (40) and second portion (42) extend outwardly beyond the planar wall (20) forming extensions (56), whereby the dental wedge may be grasped by tweezers at either extension (56), wherein, as viewed from above, the extensions (56) are formed by the edge (38) extending outwardly, then extending at an approximate right angle to form an extension edge (64), and then extending at a further approximate right angle to join with the planar wall (20), the extensions (56) forming a substantially square profile, with rounded corners.

10. The dental wedge of claim 1 , wherein the planar flange (36) includes a first portion (40) and a second portion (42), the first portion (40) and second portion (42) each include an interproximal end (44) and an outer end (46), wherein the outer ends (46) extend from the planar wall (20) above the longitudinal axis and the interproximal ends (44) extend from the planar wall (20) approximately at or below the longitudinal axis.

1 1. The dental wedge of claim 9, wherein the upper edge (22) and lower edge (24) of the planar wall (20) define an overall height, wherein the upper edge (22) of the planar wall (20) includes a recess (30) centrally located at approximately the vertical axis, wherein the recess (30) and the lower edge (24) defines a recess height, and wherein the dental wedge has one of several overall and recess heights to accommodate various sized teeth, and wherein the planar wall (20) includes a first side edge (26) and a second side edge (28) generally defining a planar wall width, wherein the extensions (56) define an overall wedge width, and wherein in one embodiment, a large size wedge has an overall wedge width of approximately 13.5 mm, an overall height of approximately 5.4 mm and a recess height of approximately 4.0 mm, and a medium size wedge has an overall wedge width of approximately 13.5 mm, an overall height of approximately 4.75 mm and a recess height of approximately 3.3 mm.

12. The dental wedge of claim 1 , wherein the dental wedge is made of a generally flexible material, wherein the dental wedge provides a resilient spring-like resistance to compressive forces

13. The dental wedge of claim 1 , wherein the dental wedge is made of plastic.

14. The dental wedge of claim 1 , wherein the dental wedge is a one-piece molded component.

15. The dental wedge of claim 1 , wherein the planar flange (36) extends from the planar wall (20) whereby a horizontal plane extending tangentially at the edge (38) of the planar flange (36) and at the lower edge (24) of the planar wall (20) places the planar wall (20) in an inclined angle extending upward and inward with respect to the horizontal plane.

16. The dental wedge of claim 1 , wherein the planar wall (20) as viewed from the front surface (32), the upper edge (22), lower edge (24), first side edge (26) and second side edge (28) generally define a rectangular perimeter of the planar wall (20), wherein a height to width ration is approximately one-half, and wherein the perimeter further defines lower corners and upper corners, the lower corners are rounded and formed by a gentle curvature of the lower edge (24) and the respective side edge, wherein the lower edge (24) and side edges define a widened U-shaped profile, and the upper corners are rounded and formed by a curvature of the upper edge (22) and the respective side edge which is more abrupt in comparison to the gentle curvature of the lower corners, and further wherein the upper edge (22) and the lower edge (24) are substantially parallel to the longitudinal axis A-A', and the side edges are substantially parallel to the vertical axis B-B'.

17. A kit comprising a plurality of the dental wedges of any of the preceding claims, wherein each dental wedge is one of several different sizes.

Description:
DENTAL WEDGE WITH SYMMETRICAL ENDS

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application claims the priority to New Zealand Application No. 629080, filed August 20, 2014, the entire contents of which is hereby incorporated by reference.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to a dental wedge, and in particular, a dental wedge used during tooth restoration.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

A dental wedge is an apparatus used during tooth restoration, usually along with a combination of dental matrix bands and dental matrix band retainers. The main purpose of the dental wedge is to press the dental matrix band against the tooth that is being restored. This allows for the matrix band to seal the tooth and keep the dental restorative material in place. The other purpose of the dental wedge is to separate the teeth and allow enough space for the dentist to restore the tooth. The dental wedge also serves as a gingival margin seal to apply pressure and control bleeding.

Dental wedges are inserted into the interproximal area from the buccal or lingual/palatal direction. Initially, dental wedges were made out of wood, but most current dental wedges are plastic. They come in various sizes to suit different interproximal areas. Most of the dental wedges have a standard triangular shape.

The standard shape of the dental wedge is not suitable for different tooth restorations.

Some tooth restorations require the dental wedge to be of a different shape to better carry out its functions. There is also need of a dental wedge for use during crown placement and other indirect tooth restorations. SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

It is an object of the present invention to provide a dental wedge that overcomes the problems of the prior art dental wedges.

It is a further object of this invention to provide a device for use during the restoration of a tooth, more specifically the restoration of a crown.

It is another object of this invention to provide a means to block undercuts below the shoulder of a tooth preparation mesially and distally.

It is yet another object of this invention to decrease the time taken to clean a restoration site.

The present invention therefore provides a dental wedge having a generally

longitudinally extending planar wall defining a longitudinal axis and a vertical axis, the planar wall having a front surface and a back surface and generally defines an upper edge and a lower edge, the front surface of the planar wall having a concave curve extending along the longitudinal axis of the planar wall, the front surface of the planar wall generally defining a restorative tooth side, and a planar flange extends from the back surface of the planar wall at a location between the upper edge and the lower edge, the planar flange extending generally in a longitudinal direction along the back surface, the planar flange includes an edge which forms a shape similar to a wave, with a trough of the wave located about the vertical axis and two crests formed on either side of the trough, whereby the back surface of the planar wall and the planar flange form an adjacent tooth side and the dental wedge is substantially symmetrical about the vertical axis and a whereby a horizontal plane extending tangentially at the edge of the planar flange and at the lower edge of the planar wall places the planar wall in an inclined angle extending upward and inward. BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Figure 1 is a top view of a dental wedge having symmetrical ends about a vertical axis in accordance with one embodiment of the present invention;

Figure 2 is a front or restorative tooth side perspective view of the dental wedge of Figure 1 ;

Figure 3 is a back or adjacent tooth side perspective view of the dental wedge of Figure

1 ;

Figure 4 is a bottom view of the dental wedge of Figure 1 ; and

Figure 5 is an end view the dental wedge of Figure 1 , wherein the other end is a mirror image.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

Figure 1 shows a top view of a dental wedge 10 wherein a horizontal or longitudinal axis A-A' extends through the dental wedge 10 and a vertical axis B-B' extends through the dental wedge 10 and intersects with the horizontal axis A-A. The dental wedge 10 includes a restorative tooth side 12 and an adjacent tooth side 14 opposite the restorative tooth side 12. The dental wedge 10 further includes right end 16 and left end 18. The dental wedge 10 has asymmetrical sides about the longitudinal axis A-A as shown by the restorative tooth side 12 and the adjacent tooth side 14. The dental wedge 10 provides symmetrical ends 16, 18 about the vertical axis B-B'. The symmetry of the dental wedge 10 allows the dental wedge 10 to be inserted into the interproximal area from either the buccal or the lingual/palatal direction in the oral cavity. The symmetry is directed to resolving access issues to the interproximal space. The symmetry also avoids potential interference from other factors, such as the handle of the wedge and the general triangular shape wedges. The dental wedge 10 of the present invention is available in a variety of sizes. As seen in Figure 2, the dental wedge 10 includes a planar wall 20 having an upper edge 22, a lower edge 24, a right side 26, and a left side 28. As will be understood, while the dental wedge 10 may be used in a manner inverted from that as shown in figures, for the sake of good order, orientation of the dental wedge 10 will be described herein with reference to the orientation as shown in the figures. The upper edge 22 includes a recess 30 having an opened U-shape. The recess 30 may have a widened U-shape as shown in the figures. As an example, in one embodiment, the recess 30 extends along at least one-third of the upper edge 22, and extends downward from the edge 22 approximately one-fifth to the lower edge 24, and in another embodiment extends downward approximately one-third. The planar wall 20 extends in a curved manner both along the longitudinal and vertical axis. The planar wall 20 includes a front surface 32 and a back surface 34 (Figure 3). The front surface 32 provides a large smooth surface. The smooth surface guides excess composite away from the interproximal space and provides a finish that doesn't require dental polishing. The smooth surface also acts as a guide for the transitional anatomy from the tooth prep to the contact point.

As seen in Figure 3, the adjacent tooth side 14 is formed in part by a planar flange 36 having an edge 38. The planar flange 36 extends from the back surface 34 of the planar wall 20. As seen from Figures 3 and 4, the planar flange 36 is formed by a first portion 40 and a second portion 42. The first portion and the second portion each have a proximal end 44 and an outer end 46. The edge of the planar flange 36 provides a general wing or wave pattern formed by two crests 48 of a wave 50 with a trough 52 in between the crests. A substantially V-shaped notch 54 is provided at and forms the trough 52 of the wave 50. The notch 54 increases flexibility of the wedge 10 in the interproximal space and forms a tighter contact with the adjacent tooth. The notch 54 provides stability to the dental wedge 10 and allows the dental wedge 10 to locate on the neighboring tooth. The planar flange 36 also has the effect of stabilizing the dental wedge 10 and levering the dental wedge 10 so that the top edge of the dental wedge 10 rests against the neighboring tooth. The position of the notch 54 is by the contact point, but on the adjacent tooth side 14. The notch 54 allows for better adaptation of the wedge 10 around the adjacent tooth.

As seen from the figures, the edge 38 of the planar flange 36 defines a curved profile. The lower edge 24 of the planar wall 20 defines a curved profile. In one embodiment, as shown in the figures, the curved profile of the planar flange 36 does not mimic or resemble the curved profile of the planar wall 20.

The dental wedge 10 does not include a handle as in conventional wedges in the dental industry. The omission of the traditional handle is to decrease potential interferences around the tooth preparation. The absence of a handle increases the amount of space available in an already crowded oral cavity. The lack of a handle also allows for the symmetry of the device along the longitudinal axis B-B'.

The adjacent tooth side 14 extends further than the restorative tooth side 12 at both ends 16, 18 of the dental wedge 10. In particular, the planar flange 36 includes extensions 56 which extend beyond the sides or edges 26, 28 of the planar wall 20. The extensions 56 each include an extension edge 64. The extensions 56 provide a means of holding the dental wedge 10. The extensions 56 also allow for the removal of the dental wedge 10 at the end of the procedure. The adjacent tooth side 14 also includes abutment or lugs 58. The lugs 58 act as an abutment or stop for tweezers. The lugs 58 provide stability while inserting the device into the interproximal area. The lugs 58 also prevent the tweezers from coming into contact with the tooth structure.

The figures show that the upper edge 22 is formed by a tapering wall 60 to form a sharp upper edge 22.

In the side view, the two sides form a disproportionate T-shape, as shown in the Figure 5. The disproportionate T-shape is made up of the sharp upper edge 22 on the top and an inverted V-shaped portion at the bottom. The height of the sharp upper edge 22 can vary to accommodate varying heights of the contact points. The sharp upper edge 22 has the recess 30 which provides a defined area for the formation of contact points.

The inverted V-shaped portion has a recessed area or groove 62 which aids in the vertical movement of the dental wedge 10. The "V" shaped portion also provides better adaptation of the wedge against the adjacent tooth. The area formed where the planar flange 36 joins the planar wall 20 and the symmetrical nature thereof forms a live or active hinge. The hinge enhances adaptation to the interproximal space.

The disproportionate structure of the two sides 12, 14 of the wedge 10 and the purposeful flex (the flexibility created by the notch 54) included in the wedge 10 allow for the deformation of the wedge 10. These features allow the wedge 10 to better fill the interproximal space and form tighter contact with the adjacent tooth. The disproportionate structure also allows for the tilt of the wedge 10, at its resting state in the interproximal area, towards the adjacent tooth. The tilt prevents the formation of undercuts and aids in the formation of better contact points on the restorative tooth.

The dental wedge 10 works such that the dentist prepares the tooth for restoration in the usual manner. The dentist places the dental wedge 10 on either side of the tooth to be restored.

The dental wedge 10 may be inserted into the interproximal area from the buccal or lingual/palatal direction. The dentist selects and adjusts the crown to fit mesially and distally.

Dental cement is used to cement the crown to the prepared tooth. When the crown is pressed onto the prepared tooth, the excess cement oozes out. The dental wedge 10 directs the flow of cement to the buccal and lingual/palatal areas. The buccal and lingual/palatal areas are easier to clean up than the interproximal areas around the restoration site as the dentist has better access. The dental wedge 10 is removed with minimal clean up at the restoration site, especially in the interproximal area.

In one embodiment, the material of the dental wedge 10 of the present invention may be a plastic or polymer such as ULTRAFORM. While the present invention has been described in connection with a specific application, the application is exemplary in nature and is not intended to be limiting on the possible applications of this invention. It will be understood that modifications and variations may be effected without departing from the spirit and scope of the present invention. It will be appreciated that the present disclosure is intended as an exemplification of the invention and is not intended to limit the invention to the specific embodiments illustrated and described. The disclosure is intended to cover, by the appended claims, all such modifications as fall within the scope of the claims.