What Is a Facebow Registration?

There are several different types of instruments that denture specialists can use to ensure the perfect fit for your dental prosthesis. This is because each face is different, and ensuring symmetry, comfort, and esthetic appeal comes down to the smallest of details. One tool that many denturists use is a facebow. In fact, pretty much every dentist, orthodontist, and prosthodontist receives one in dental school. But what exactly is a facebow and how does it work?


Humble Beginnings

The facebow as a dental instrument was first introduced by George Snow in 1899. George needed a way to transfer the rotation axis of the lower jaw and transfer it to a dental articulator, a device used to reproduce positions between jaws within your mouth. The record that this produces may then be used for fabrication of various prostheses such as complete dentures, occlusal splints, and full arch fixed crown and bridge work.


Practical and Esthetic

Due to the very nature of your mouth, any treatments or prosthetics that go inside must not only be functional, but esthetically-pleasing as well. The absence of a facebow risks inaccurate measurements which leads to an extended process of denture adjustments. X-rays and other 2D imaging software cannot exactly replicate the human mouth, making 3D registrations with instruments like facebow is in fact key to denture success.


Facebow Components

  • Frame – This u-shaped frame sits 2-3 inches in front of the patients face. All of the other components are clamped onto the frame.
  • Rods – The condylar rods are on either side of the frame, they are used to locate the hinge axis and then transfer it to the articulator.
  • Bite fork – Consisting of a stem and prongs, the bite fork is held in contact with maxillary jaw or mandibular jaw.
  • Orbital Pointer – This is used to orient the facebow to an anatomical reference point on the face.

Denture specialists who do not use facebow registration run the risk of less accurate prosthetics, affecting the appearance and function of their patients’ dentures. See how the experts at the South Calgary Denture and Implant Clinic ensure that your dentures are the perfect fit by booking a consultation today!