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Keywords

Freeway space, Vertical occlusal distance, Interocclusal distance, Trigeminal nerve, Cranial nerve V, Sensory receptors, Periodontal membrane, Masseter and temporalis muscles, Muscle spindles

Abstract

The purpose of this article is to explain the importance of evaluating and documenting the freeway space (interdental rest position), in initial examinations and at the completion of therapy in patients exhibiting an open mandibular resting position. The freeway space measurements obtained can be shared with parents, patients, and referral sources. To this end, the muscular, neural, and sensory components related to the freeway space are discussed, as well as airway, dental eruption patterns, tactile feedback, and orthodontic relapse considerations. An extraoral method for evaluating the dimensions of the anterior freeway space is proposed.

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