GPT Terms – P

pack l: to make into a compact form 2: to completely fill 3: to crowd together 4: to compress—pack·a·bil·i·typack·able

pack: any material used to protect tissue, fill space or prevent hemorrhage

packing : the act of filling a mold—see DENTURE P.

pain : a subjective unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential tissue damage or described in terms of such damage—see ACUTE P., CHRONIC P., HETEROTOPIC P., MASTICATORY P., MUSCULOSKELETAL P., MYOGENOUS P., NEUROGENOUS P., ODONTOGENOUS P., PRIMARY P., PROJECTED P., SECONDARY P., VASCULAR P., VISCERAL P.

palatal augmentation prosthesis : a removable maxillofacial prosthesis which alters the hard and/or soft palate’s topographical form adjacent to the tongue. It allows reshaping of the hard palate to improve tongue/palate contact during speech and swallowing due to impaired tongue mobility as a result of surgery, trauma, or neurological/motor deficits

palatal bar: see PALATAL BAR CONNECTOR

palatal bar connector: a major connector of a removable dental prosthesis that crosses the palate and is characterized by being relatively narrow anterior and posteriorly

palatal cleft 1: an opening in the roof of the mouth and/or in the functional soft palate. A deformity of the palate from improper union of the maxillary process with the median nasal process during the second month of intrauterine development 2: a cleft in the palate between the two palatal processes. If both the hard and soft palate are involved, it is termed uranostaphyloschisis; if only the soft palate is divided, it is termed uranoschisis—see CLEFT PALATE, COMPLETE CLEFT PALATE, OCCULT CLEFT PALATE

palatal drop prosthesis: see PALATAL AUGMENTATION PROSTHESIS

palatal expansion : the lateral movement of the maxillae to increase palatal width

palatal incompetence : the inability of an anatomically intact soft palate to effect a functional palatopharyngeal closure

palatal insufficiency : an anatomical inadequacy of the soft palate in which the palatopharyngeal sphincter is incomplete

palatal lift prosthesis: a maxillofacial prosthesis which elevates the soft palate superiorly and aids in restoration of soft palate functions which may be lost due to an acquired, congenital or developmental defect. A definitive palatal lift is usually made for patients whose experience with a diagnostic palatal lift has been successful, especially if surgical alterations are deemed unwarranted. An interim palatal life prosthesis is usually made as a diagnostic aid to assess the level of possible improvement in speech intelligibility. Some clinicians believe use of a palatal lift may stimulate an otherwise flaccid soft palate to increase functional activity, subsequently lessening its need.

palatal lift prosthesis modification : alterations in the adaptation, contour, form, or function of an existing palatal lift necessitated due to tissue impingement, lack of function, poor clasp adaptation, or the like

palatal plate : a major connector of a removable dental prosthesis that covers a significant portion of the palatal surface

palatal seal: see POSTPALATAL SEAL

palatal stent: see SURGICAL STENT

palatal strap : a maxillary major connector of a removable dental prosthesis having an anterior/posterior dimension of 13 to 20 mm that directly or obliquely traverses the palate and is generally located in the area of the second premolar and first molar

palatal vault 1: the deepest and most superior part of the palate 2: the curvature of the palate

pal·ate : see HARD P., SOFT P.

pal·a·to·gram : a graphic representation of the area of the palate contacted by the tongue during a specified activity, usually speech

palatopharyngeal closure : a sphincteric action sealing the oral cavity from the nasal cavity during swallowing and phonation by the synchronous movement of the middle third of the soft palate in a superior and posterior direction, the lateral pharyngeal wall medially, and the posterior walls of the pharynx anteriorly—syn VELOPHARYNGEAL CLOSURE

palatopharyngeal inadequacy: a condition where there is lack of effective closure between the soft palate and one or more of the pharyngeal walls during swallowing or speech sounds that require high intraoral pressure. Nasal reflux escape of air during speech or hypernasality may result. This lack of closure may be due to palatopharyngeal incompetence, insufficiency or from lack of movement of the pharyngeal walls—see PALATOPHARYNGEAL INCOMPETENCE, PALATOPHARYNGEAL INSUFFICIENCY

palatopharyngeal incompetence : the inability of an anatomically intact soft palate to contribute to a functional palatopharyngeal closure usually due to disease or trauma of a neurogenic or muscular nature—see PALATOPHARYNGEAL INADEQUACY, PALATOPHARYNGEAL INSUFFICIENCY

palatopharyngeal insufficiency : an acquired or congenital anatomic defect of the soft palate that makes the palatopharyngeal sphincter incomplete—see PALATOPHARYNGEAL INADEQUACY, PALATOPHARNYGEAL INCOMPETENCE

palatopharyngeal sphincter : the functional sphincter that separates the nasopharynx and oropharynx during swallowing and phonation, formed by the posterior and superior movement of the middle third of the soft palate, the anterior movement of the posterior pharyngeal wall, and the medial movement of the lateral pharyngeal walls—see PALATOPHARYNGEAL CLOSURE—synVELOPHARYNGEAL SPHINCTER

palatorrhaphy: surgical repair of a cleft palate

pal·lia·tive: affording relief but not a cure

pal·patepal·pat·edpal·pat·ing : to examine by touch—pal·pa·tion n

panoramic radiograph : a tomogram of the maxilla and mandible taken with a specialized machine designed to present a panoramic view of the full circumferential lengths of the maxilla and mandible on a single film—called also orthopantograph

panoramic radiography : a method of radiography by which a continuous radiograph of the maxillary and/or mandibular dental arches and their associated structures may be obtained

Panorex adjtrademark (1966): see PANORAMIC RADIOGRAPH

pan·to·gram n: see PANTOGRAPHIC TRACING

pan·to·graph 1: an instrument used for copying a planar figure to any desired scale 2: in dentistry, an instrument used to graphically record in, one or more planes, paths of mandibular movement and to provide information for the programming of an articulator

pantographic tracing : a graphic record of mandibular movement usually recorded in the horizontal, sagittal and frontal planes as registered by styli on the recording tables of a pantograph or by means of electronic sensors

pa·pil·lapa·pi·llae : any small, nipple-shaped elevation—see INCISIVE P., INTERDENTAL P.

para·func·tion : disordered or perverted function

par·al·lax : a difference in the perceived location of an object when observed from two different points not on a straight line with the object

parallel attachment: see PRECISION ATTACHMENT

par·al·lel·o·me·ter 1: an instrument used for determining the exact parallel relationships of lines, structures, and surfaces in dental casts and prostheses 2: an apparatus used for making one object parallel with another object, as in paralleling attachments and abutments for fixed dental prostheses or precision attachments for removable dental prostheses

pa·ral·y·sis : loss or impairment of motor function as the result of a trauma or pathosis

paresthesia n: lacking normal sensation, such as tingling or burning; morbid or perverted sensation; abnormal sensation

partial coverage restoration:see PARTIAL VENEER CROWN

partial denture : a removable dental prosthesis or a fixed dental prosthesis that restores one or more but not all of the natural teeth and/or associated parts and may be supported in part or whole by natural teeth, dental implant supported crowns, dental implant abutment(s), or other fixed dental prostheses and/or the oral mucosa; usage: a partial denture can be described as a fixed dental prosthesis orremovable dental prosthesis based on the patient’s capability to remove or not remove the prosthesis. If the prosthesis is a fixed dental prosthesis that can only be removed by a clinician, i.e., a fixed dental prosthesis (FDP) supported by dental implants that has been retained by means of a mechanical system [i.e., screw(s)], this prosthesis is also termed a fixed dental prosthesis. Adjectives (modifiers) may be added to the clinical description of the dental prosthesis, if needed, to designate the means of mechanical retention, i.e., a screw retained fixed dental prosthesis. Any such prosthesis luted to dental implants (in the same manner as luting a fixed dental prosthesis to natural teeth) needs no additional designation as to its means of retention—see BILATERAL DISTAL EXTENSION REMOVABLE D.P., FIXED D.P., REMOVABLE D.P., UNILATERAL REMOVABLE D.P., PROSTHESIS

partial denture construction : the science and techniques of designing and constructing partial dentures (GPT-4)

partial denture impression : a negative likeness of a part or all of a partially edentulous arch Editorial note: the impression is made of the denture bearing areas, teeth, implant abutments etc, not of the removable dental prosthesis

partial denture rest : a rigid extension of a fixed or removable dental prosthesis that prevents movement toward the mucosa and transmits functional forces to the teeth or dental implant

partial denture retention : the ability of a removable dental prosthesis to resist movement away from its foundation area and/or abutments

partial dislocation : displacement of the articular disk resulting in a seriously impaired disk-condyle complex function

partial veneer crown : a restoration that restores all but one coronal surface of a tooth or dental implant abutment, usually not covering the facial surface

partitive color mixing : color mixing in which both additive and subtractive principles are involved. The eye interprets tiny dots of subtractive color too small to be individually resolved at the viewing distance. The resultant color will be the average of the colors used

Passavant’s pad: see PASSAVANT’S RIDGE

Passavant’s ridge [Philip Gustav Passavant, German surgeon, 1815-1893]: eponym for a prominence on the posterior wall of the nasal pharynx formed by contraction of the superior constrictor muscle of the pharynx during swallowing. Contraction occurs at the level of the plane of the hard palate—called also Passavant’s barPassavant’s cushionPassavant’s padand Passavant’s ridge

pas·si·vateat·ed; –at·ing 1: to render inactive or less reactive 2: to protect against contamination by coating or surface treating

pas·si·va·tion : a process whereby metals and alloys are made more corrosion resistant through surface treatment. This process produces a thin and stable inert oxide layer on the external surfaces—called also passive corrosion conditioning

pas·sive 1: not active or in operation; inert; latent 2: resistant to corrosion 3: existing or occurring without being active, direct, or open

pas·si·vi·ty : the quality or condition of inactivity or rest assumed by the teeth, tissues, and denture when a removable dental prosthesis is in place but not under masticatory pressure

pat·ent : open or unobstructed path of dislodgment: the specific direction in which a removable dental prosthesis may be dislodged

path of insertion: see PATH OF PLACEMENT

path of placement : the specific direction in which a prosthesis is placed on the abutment teeth or dental implant(s)

path of withdrawal:see PATH OF PLACEMENT

pathogenic occlusion : an occlusal relationship capable of producing pathologic changes in the stomatognathic system

pat·tern: a form that is used to make a mold; a model for making a mold—see OCCLUSAL P.

pa·trixpa·trices 1: a pattern or die used in type founding to form a matrix 2: the extension of a dental attachment system that fits into the matrix

pawl : a pivotal tongue or bolt on one part of a machine that is adapted to fall into notches or spaces on another part so as to permit motion in only one direction, i.e., a ratchet wheel

pear-shaped area: see PEAR-SHAPED PAD

pear-shaped pad : the most distal extension of attached keratinized mucosa overlying the mandibular ridge crest formed by the scarring pattern after extraction of the most posterior molar. It should be differentiated from the retromolar area

pediatric speech aid prosthesis : a temporary or interim maxillofacial prosthesis used to close a defect in the hard and/or soft palate of an infant or child. It may replace tissue lost due to developmental or surgical alterations. It is necessary for the production of intelligible speech. Normal lateral growth of the palatal bones necessitates replacement of this prosthesis occasionally. Intermittent revisions of the obturator section can assist in maintenance of palatal pharyngeal closure (termed a speech aid prosthesis modification). Frequently, such prostheses are not fabricated before the deciduous dentition is fully erupted since clasp retention is often essential—syn BULB, CLEFT PALATE APPLIANCE, NASOPHARYNGEAL OBTURATOR, OBTURATOR, PROSTHETIC SPEECH AID, SPEECH APPLIANCE, SPEECH BULB

pedicle graft: a skin flap sustained by a blood-carrying stem from the donor site during transfer; in periodontal surgery, a flap used to increase the width of attached gingiva, or to cover a root surface, by moving the attached gingiva, which remains joined at one side, to an adjacent position and then suturing the free end

peg lateral : an undersized, tapered maxillary lateral incisor

pellucid : admitting maximum pedage of light without diffusion or distortion; reflecting light evenly from all surfaces

pen·ny·weight n: a unit of mass in the Troy system used to measure precious metals and equivalent to 1.555 grams. Defined also as 24 grains in the p. and 12 p. in the Troy Oz. Abbr: dwt (from Latin denarius, a small silver coin). The abbreviation pwt is also sometimes seen in publications

perceived color : attribute of visual perception that can be described by color names: white, gray, black, yellow, orange, brown, red, green, blue, purple, etc., or by a combination of names

per·cus·sion 1: the act of striking a part with sharp blows as an aid in diagnosing the condition of the underlying parts by means of the sound obtained 2: in dentistry, striking a part with short, sharp blows as a diagnostic aid in evaluation of a tooth or dental implant by the sound obtained

per·i·ap·i·cal : relating to tissues surrounding the apex of a tooth, including the alveolar bone and periodontal ligament

peri-implantitis : a term used to describe inflammation around a dental implant, usually the dental implant abutment Editorial note: peri-implantitis is a misnomer since the peri-implant mucosa, not the dental implant and/or dental implant abutment, is the inflamed entity. Suggested terminology may include acute or chronic gingivitis..

perikymata: small transverse ridges on the surface of the enamel of permanent teeth that represent overlapping prism groups within the enamel

peri·mo·lysis : acidic erosion of the teeth due to chronic gastric regurgitation.

per·i·o·don·tal : pertaining to or occurring around a tooth

per·io·don·tom·e·try : the measurement of tooth mobility

periosteum , –tea (1597): the membrane of connective tissue that closely invests all bones except at articular surfaces

per·i·ra·dic·u·lar : around or surrounding a tooth root

peripheral seal: see BORDER SEAL

pe·riph·er·y npleries (1571): see DENTURE BORDER

permanent dentition : the teeth that erupt after the primary dentition that do not shed under normal conditions

phantasmagoria : 1: an exhibition or display of optical effect and illusions 2a: a constantly shifting complex succession of things seen or imagined, 2b. a scene that constantly changes 3. a bizarre or fantastic combination, collection or assemblage

pharyngeal flap : tissue elevated from the posterior pharyngeal wall and inserted into the soft palate to correct palatopharyngeal inadequacy


pharyngeal walls : posterior and lateral walls of the naso- and oropharynx

phar·ynxpl phar·yn·ges : a funnel-shaped tube of muscle tissue between the mouth, nares, and the esophagus, which is the common pathway for food and air. The nasopharynx is above the level of the soft palate. The oropharynx lies between the upper edge of the epiglottis and the soft palate, whereas the laryngopharynx lies below the upper edge of the epiglottis and the openings into the esophagus and larynx

phosphate-bonded investment: any casting investment with a binder formed from magnesium oxide and mono-ammonium phosphate. The resulting colloidal multi molecular (NH4MgPO4·6H2O)n coagulates around MgO and fillers. This is combined with silica in the form of quartz, cristobalite or both in a concentration of about 80%. Upon heating the binder undergoes several changes believed to be responsible for increased strength at higher temperatures. These investments exhibit considerable thermal expansion and can be used when casting higher fusing metal-ceramic alloys and partial denture frameworks

phos·phor·es·cence : a form of photoluminescence based on the properties of certain molecules to absorb energy (either near ultra violet or visible), and emit it in the form of visible radiation at a higher wavelength. Distinguished from fluorescence in that light continues to be emitted for some time after the exciting energy has ceased—see FLUORESCENCE, LUMINANCE

pho·to·ac·tive : reacting chemically to visible light or ultraviolet radiation—pho·to·ac·ti·va·tion

pho·tom·et·er : an instrument for the measurement of emitted, reflected, or transmitted light. For the measurement of luminous intensity, a visual receptor element (the eye) may be used in the measuring device or a physical receptor element may be used that can be related to the calculated response of a standard observer—see PHYSICAL P., VISUAL P.

pho·ton : a massless particle, the quantum of the electromagnetic field, carrying energy, momentum, and angular momentum—called also light quantum

photopic vision : vision as it occurs under illumination sufficient to permit the full discrimination of colors. It is the function of the retinal cones and is not dependent on the retinal rods— called also daylight vision as contrasted with twilight or scotopic vision

photoreceptor process : that specific process that is set in motion in a visual sensory end organ or other photic receptor by the incidence of its adequate stimulus, i.e., light

physical elasticity of muscle : the physical quality of muscle of being elastic; that is, yielding to active or passive physical stretch (GPT-4)

physical photometer : a photometer in which the measurement is made by some physical or chemical effect instead of by visual methods

physiologically balanced occlusion : a balanced occlusion that is in harmony with the temporomandibular joints and the neuromuscular system (GPT-4)

physiologic elasticity of muscle : the unique biologic quality of muscle of being capable of change and of resuming its size under neuromuscular control (GPT-4)

physiologic occlusion : occlusion in harmony with the functions of the masticatory system (GPT-4)

physiologic rest position 1: the mandibular position assumed when the head is in an upright position and the involved muscles, particularly the elevator and depressor groups, are in equilibrium in tonic contraction, and the condyles are in a neutral, unstrained position (GPT-1) 2: the position assumed by the mandible when the attached muscles are in a state of tonic equilibrium. The position is usually noted when the head is held upright (GPT-1) 3: the postural position of the mandible when an individual is resting comfortably in an upright position and the associated muscles are in a state of minimal contractual activity — comp OCCLUSAL VERTICAL DIMENSION, REST VERTICAL DIMENSION

physiologic or physiological 1: characteristic of or conforming to the innate function of a tissue or organ 2: pertaining to organic processes or to functions in an organism or in any of its parts 3: the opposite of pathologic

1pick·le : a solution or bath for preserving or cleaning; any of various baths used in cleaning or processing

2pick·le; pick·led; pick·ling : to treat, preserve, or clean in or with an agent

pier : an intermediate abutment for a fixed dental prosthesis

pier abutment: see INTERMEDIATE ABUTMENT

pig·ment : finely ground, natural or synthetic, inorganic or organic, insoluble dispersed particles (powder), which, when dispersed in a liquid vehicle, may provide, in addition to color, many other essential properties such as opacity, hardness, durability, and corrosion resistance. The term is used to include an extender, white or color pigments. The distinction between powders that are pigments and those that are dyes is generally considered on the basis of solubility—pigments being insoluble and dispersed in the material, dyes being soluble or in solution as used

pin: a small cylindrical piece of metal—see ANTERIOR GUIDE P., CEMENTED P., FRICTION RETAINED P., SELF-THREADING P., STEINMANN’S P.

pin·hole n: a tooth preparation feature used to provide retention and resistance to displacement. Typically a 2-3 mm hole is prepared in the dentin

pinledge: a partial veneer retainer preparation incorporating pins holes to provide retention

pin-retained cast metal core: a cemented cast foundation restoration for an extensively damaged vital tooth retained by cast tapered pins that are integral with the core. An extracoronal restoration is subsequently placed over the core

pin-retained restoration: a restoration for an extensively damaged vital tooth that in part relies on threaded or cemented pins placed in the dentin for its retention and resistance form

pivoting condyle: see WORKING SIDE CONDYLE

place·ment : the process of directing a prosthesis to a desired location; the introduction of prosthesis into a patient’s mouth—substand DELIVERY, INSERTION—called also denture placementprosthesis placement


plane motion 1: motion that is a combination of rotation and translation in a given plane. The motion is described by instantaneous centers of rotation. When the center of rotation is fixed, the body is rotating 2: the combined motions of translation and rotation of a rigid body within a given plane

plane of occlusion: see OCCLUSAL PLANE

plane of reference : any plane with defined landmarks from which measurements can be made—see HORIZONTAL PLANE OF REFERENCE

plas·ter : a paste-like composition (usually of water, lime, and sand) that hardens on drying and is used for coating walls, ceilings, and partitions—slang: in dentistry, a colloquial term applied to dental plaster of paris

plaster of paris: a white, powdery, slightly hydrated calcium sulfate made by calcination of gypsum, used for making casts and molds when combined with water to form a quick-setting paste

plaster wash : a thin mix of plaster used to improve the accuracy of a preliminary impression (GPT-4)

1plas·tic 1: capable of being shaped or formed 2: pertaining to the alteration or reformation of living tissues

2plas·tic : any of numerous organic synthetic or processed materials that generally are thermoplastic or thermosetting polymers, usually of high molecular weight. They can be cast, extruded, molded, drawn, or laminated into films, filaments, and objects

plastic base : a denture or record base made of a plastic material (GPT-4)

plate nslang: see PROSTHESIS

platinum foil : a precious-metal foil with a high fusing point that makes it suitable as a matrix for various soldering procedures as well as to provide an internal form for porcelain restorations during their fabrication

Pleasure curve [Max Pleasure, 1903-1965]: eponym for a curve of occlusion which, when viewed in the frontal plane, conforms to a line that is convex in the cephalic direction, except when viewed through the molar region

plunger cusp : a cusp that tends to force food into interproximal areas

po·gon·ion : the most anterior point on the mandible

point A : a bony landmark representing the deepest point of the premaxillary concavity between the anterior nasal spine and prosthion as viewed on a lateral cephalometric radiograph

point angle : in the development of a cavity preparation, that place of convergence of three planes or surfaces—comp LINE ANGLE


1pol·ish : to make smooth and glossy, usually by friction; giving luster; the act or process of making a denture or casting smooth and glossy

2pol·ish: a smooth, glossy surface; having luster

polished denture surface : that portion of the surface of a denture that extends in an occlusal direction from the border of the denture and includes the palatal surfaces. It is that part of the denture base that is usually polished, and it includes the buccal and lingual surfaces of the teeth (GPT-4)

polished layer: see BEILBY LAYER

pol·ish·ing 1: to make smooth and glossy, usually by friction; to give luster to (GPT-1) 2: obs: the act or process of making a denture or casting smooth and glossy (GPT-1)

polishing agents: any material used to impart luster to a surface

polycarboxylate cement:see ZINC POLYCARBOXYLATE CEMENT

poly·eth·er : an elastomeric impression material of ethylene oxide and tetra-hydrofluro copolymers that polymerizes under the influence of an aromatic ester

poly·mer : a chemical compound consisting of large organic molecules built by repetition of smaller monomeric units

polymerization : the forming of a compound by the joining together of molecules of small molecular weights into a compound of large molecular weight

pol·ym·er·ize: to effect a chemical reaction by joining together individual molecules to form large molecules made up of many repeated units

poly(methyl methacrylate): a stable, hard transparent resin of marked clarity with a Knoop hardness number ranging from 18-20, a tensile strength of approximately 60 MPa, a density of 1.19 and a modulus of elasticity of approximately 2.4 GPa

poly·som·nog·raph·y : the all-night recording of a variety of physiologic parameters (e g., brain waves, eye movements, muscle tonus, respiration, heart rate) as an aid in the diagnosis of sleep related disorders

poly·sul·fide : an elastomeric impression material of polysulfide polymer (mercaptan) that cross-links under the influence of oxidizing agents such as lead peroxide

poly(vinyl siloxane) : an addition reaction silicone elastomeric impression material of silicone polymers having terminal vinyl groups that cross-link with silanes on activation by a platinum or palladium salt catalyst.

pon·tic an artificial tooth on a fixed dental prosthesis that replaces a missing natural tooth, restores its function, and usually fills the space previously occupied by the clinical crown

por·cel·ain : a ceramic material formed of infusible elements joined by lower fusing materials. Most dental porcelains are glasses and are used in the fabrication of teeth for dentures, pontics and facings, metal ceramic restorations including fixed dental prostheses, as well as all-ceramic restorations such as crowns, laminate veneers, inlays, onlays, and other restorations

porcelain fused to metal restoration: see METAL CERAMIC RESTORATION

porcelain jacket crown:see ALL-CERAMIC RESTORATION

porcelain labial margin : the extension of ceramic material to the finish line of the preparation without visible metal substructure in the marginal area—syn PORCELAIN BUTT MARGIN

porcelain laminate veneer: a thin bonded ceramic restoration that restores the facial surface and part of the proximal surfaces of teeth requiring esthetic restoration

porcelain release agent: any coating to facilitate separation of unfired porcelain from a die

porcelain wax technique: application of a mixture of body porcelain and wax (approximately 6:1 ratio by weight) to the die to achieve optimal adaptation of a porcelain labial margin of a metal-ceramic restoration

po·ros·i·ty 1: the presence of voids or pores within a structure 2: the state or quality of having minute pores, openings or interstices—see BACK PRESSURE P., OCCLUDED GAS P., SHRINK-SPOT P., SOLIDIFICATION P.

positional record : an intraoral or extraoral registration of a specified mandibular position

post and core crown : a restoration in which the crown and cast post are one unit

post-ceramic solder: 1. a soldering procedure to join metal-ceramic restorations after final shaping and glazing of the ceramic veneer. Also used to join Type III or Type IV gold castings to metal-ceramic units. 2. an alloy formulated for post-ceramic soldering

post dam: see POSTPALATAL SEAL

post dam area: see POSTPALATAL SEAL AREA

posterior 1: situated behind or in back of; caudal 2: in human anatomy, dorsal

posterior bite collapse: see POSTERIOR OVERCLOSURE

posterior border jaw relation : the most posterior relation of the mandible to the maxillae at any specific vertical relation (GPT-4)

posterior border movement : movements of the mandible along the posterior limit of the envelope of motion

posterior border position : the most posterior position of the mandible at any specific vertical relation

posterior determinants of mandibular movement : the temporomandibular articulations and associated structures—see DETERMINANTS OF MANDIBULAR MOVEMENT

posterior determinants of occlusion: see DETERMINANTS OF MANDIBULAR MOVEMENT

posterior open bite slang: see POSTERIOR OPEN OCCLUSAL RELATIONSHIP

posterior open occlusal relationship : lack of posterior tooth contact in any occluding position of the anterior teeth

posterior opening movement : the opening movement of the mandible about the terminal hinge axis (GPT-4)

posterior overclosure : the loss of occluding vertical dimension as a result of the loss or drifting of posterior teeth

posterior palatal seal: see POSTPALATAL SEAL

posterior palatal seal area: see POSTPALATAL SEAL AREA

posterior reference points: two points, located one on each side of the face in the area of the transverse horizontal axis, which, together with an anterior reference point, establish the horizontal reference plane

posterior tooth form : the distinguishing contours of the occlusal surfaces of posterior teeth

postmenopausal atrophy : atrophy of various tissues, such as oral mucosa, occurring after menopause

postpalatal seal : the seal area at the posterior border of a maxillary removable dental prosthesis

postpalatal seal area : the soft tissue area at or beyond the junction of the hard and soft palates on which pressure, within physiologic limits, can be applied by a complete RDP to aid in its retention

postsurgical mandibular prosthesis: a maxillofacial prosthesis used to optimize intra/extraoral contours to improve speech and deglutition after mandibular or contiguous soft tissue surgery due to tumor ablation, or reconstruction of acquired or congenital defects, where mandibular continuity is maintained or reestablished

postsurgical maxillary prosthesis: a maxillofacial prosthesis used to optimize maxillary contours to improve speech and deglutition after a maxillary resection due to a tumor or reconstruction of acquired or congenital defects of the maxilla, where there is no oral-antral or oral-nasal communication


postural contraction : that minimal tonic muscle activity necessary to resist the forces of gravity and thus maintain posture; maintenance of muscle tension (usually isometric) sufficient to maintain posture, dependent on muscle tone

postural position: any mandibular relationship occurring during minimal muscle contraction

pour hole : an aperture in investment or any other mold material leading to the prosthesis space into which prosthetic material is poured (GPT-4)

pre ceramic solder: 1. a soldering procedure joining framework components of a metal-ceramic prosthesis prior to application of the ceramic veneer 2. an alloy formulated for pre-ceramic soldering

precious metal : a metal containing primarily elements of the platinum group, gold, and silver

precious metal alloy: an alloy predominantly composed of elements considered precious, i.e., gold, the six metals of the platinum group (platinum, osmium, iridium, palladium, ruthenium, and rhodium), and silver

precision attachment : 1: a retainer consisting of a metal receptacle (matrix) and a closely fitting part (patrix); the matrix is usually contained within the normal or expanded contours of the crown on the abutment tooth/dental implant and the patrix is attached to a pontic or the removable dental prosthesis framework 2: an interlocking device, one component of which is fixed to an abutment or abutments, and the other is integrated into a removable dental prosthesis in order to stabilize and/or retain it

precision rest : a prefabricated, rigid metallic extension (patrix) in a fixed or removable dental prosthesis that fits intimately into the box-type rest seat or keyway (matrix) portion of a precision attachment in a restoration

preextraction cast: see DIAGNOSTIC CAST

preliminary cast : a cast formed from a preliminary impression for use in diagnosis or the fabrication of an impression tray

preliminary impression : a negative likeness made for the purpose of diagnosis, treatment planning, or the fabrication of a tray

preload: the tension created in a screw, especially the fluked threadings, when tightened. An engineering term used in dentistry to describe the degree of tightness of a screw, usually in implant dentistry.

premature contact: see DEFLECTIVE OCCLUSAL CONTACT

pre·ma·tur·i·ty n: see DEFLECTIVE OCCLUSAL CONTACT

preoperative cast : a positive likeness of a part or parts of the oral cavity for the purpose of diagnosis and treatment planning—see DIAGNOSTIC CAST

preoperative record: any record made for the purpose of study or treatment planning (GPT-4)

preoperative wax-up: a dental diagnostic procedure in which planned restorations are developed in wax on a diagnostic cast to determine optimal clinical and laboratory procedures necessary to achieve the desired esthetics and function—called also diagnostic wax-uppreoperative waxing

preprosthetic surgery : surgical procedures designed to facilitate fabrication of a prosthesis or to improve the prognosis of prosthodontic care

pressure area : a region of mucosa that is being subjected to excessive pressure from a dental prosthesis

pressure indicating paste : any substance applied to a dental prosthesis, which, when seated on a structure, demonstrates the adaptation of the prosthesis to the structure it opposes

pressure relief : alteration of the denture-bearing surface of a denture to reduce force on the underlying tissues (GPT-4)

pressure welding : bonding of two metals together by sufficiently large force applied perpendicular to the surface. Such force must be of magnitude to produce permanent distortions that expose a film-free metal contact

pretreatment records : any records made for the purpose of diagnosis, recording of the patient history, or treatment planning in advance of therapy

primary colors : three basic colors used to make most other colors by mixture, either additive mixture of lights or subtractive mixture of colorants

primary colors (additive) : three colored lights from which all other colors can be matched by additive mixture. The three must be selected so that no one of them can be matched by mixture of the other two. Generally, red, green, and blue are used. Additive primaries are the complements of the subtractive primaries

primary colors (subtractive) : colors of three colorants or colored materials which, when mixed together subtract from one another, resulting in black or a very dark neutral color. Subtractive primaries are generally cyan, magenta, and yellow

primary dentition : the teeth that erupt first and are normally shed and replaced by permanent (succedaneous) teeth—syn DECIDUOUS DENTITION

primary hyperalgesia : stimulation evoked primary pain due to lowered pain threshold

primary impression: see PRELIMINARY IMPRESSION

primary occlusal trauma : the effects induced by abnormal or excessive occlusal forces acting on teeth with normal periodontal support

primary pain : pain that identifies the true source of nociceptive input

pro·cesspro·ces·ses 1: in anatomy, a prominence or projection of bone 2a: in dentistry, any technical procedure that incorporates a number of steps 2b: the procedure of bringing about polymerization of dental resins for prostheses or bases—see DENTURE PROCESSING

processed denture base : that portion of a polymerized dental prosthesis covering the oral mucosa of the maxillary and/or mandible to which artificial teeth will be attached by means of a second processing

process jig: see ANALOG

pro·file : an outline or contour, especially one representing a side view of a human head

profile record : a registration or record of the facial profile of a patient—see also EMERGENCE PROFILE

prog·nath·ic : a protruded position of the mandible in relation to the maxillae—called also caput progeneum,exognathiaprogeniaand prognathia

prog·na·thism : an overgrowth of the mandible in an anteroposterior direction; a protrusion of the mandible in relation to the maxillae

prog·no·sis : a forecast as to the probable result of a disease or a course of therapy

progressive loading : the gradual increase in the application of force on a dental implant whether intentionally done with a dental prosthesis or unintentionally via forces placed by adjacent anatomic structures or parafunctional loading

progressive mandibular lateral translation 1: the translatory portion of mandibular movement when viewed in a specified body plane 2: the translatory portion of mandibular movement as viewed in a specific body plane that occurs at a rate or amount that is directly proportional to the forward movement of the nonworking condyle—see MANDIBULAR TRANSLATION

progressive side shift: see MANDIBULAR TRANSLATION

projected pain: heterotopic pain felt in the anatomical peripheral distribution of the same nerve that mediates the primary pain

proportional limit : that unit of stresses beyond which deformation is no longer proportional to the applied load

proprioception : the reception of stimulation of sensory nerve terminals within the tissues of the body that give information concerning movements and the position of the body; perception mediated by proprioceptors

pros·the·sisses (1900) 1: an artificial replacement of an absent part of the human body 2: a therapeutic device to improve or alter function 3: a device used to aid in accomplishing a desired surgical result Editorial note: The taxonomy of the word prostheses is as complex as are the varieties of items made by humans for any utilitarian purpose. While classification of botanical or zoological species can be relatively precise due to the common nature of genetic derivation (including descriptions of genetic alterations), such is not the case with respect to many things made by humans. One has only to think about the range of forms used in the course of human history classified as “items of transportation” to be convinced of the complexity and frequently transient nature of such a mode as the automobile! With respect to dentistry, the noun prosthesis generally is described first by a type adjective (dental, maxillofacial or ancillary) (Figs. 1-4) and frequently second by use of one or more additional adjectives (termed modifiers) to clarify such matters as anatomic location, form, materials, means of retention, support, time of usage, or other items. Using coordinate adjectives (two or more adjectives separated by a comma, instead of by coordinating conjunctions) to assist in further description of the prosthesis is helpful but should generally be limited to three or at most four for convenience in maintaining understanding of the noun prosthesis. Frequently, an adjective clause <descriptor> can be used following the word prosthesis to help clarify such issues as the nature of the support [i.e. tooth number(s), dental implant number(s)] available for the prosthesis. A descriptor is something (a word, phrase or characteristic feature) that serves to identify or describe; especially a word or phrase (as an index term) used to identify an item in an information retrieval system. Use of acronyms to describe a prosthesis is to be discouraged since such descriptors do not transfer between languages and thus can be easily misunderstood.

prosthesis placement: see PLACEMENT

prosthesis placement: see PLACEMENT

pros·thet·icpros·thet·i·cal·ly : relating to a prosthesis or prosthetics

prosthetic dentistry: see PROSTHODONTICS

prosthetic restoration : an artificial replacement for an absent part of the human body (GPT-4)


pros·thet·ics ,: the art and science of supplying artificial replacements for missing parts of the human body—see also MAXILLOFACIAL P.

pros·the·tist : a person involved in the construction of an artificial replacement for any part of the human body

pros·tho·don·tia n: see PROSTHODONTICS

prosthodontic diagnostic index [American College of Prosthodontists ©, (2004)]: a clinical diagnostic index classification for 1) the edentulous patient, 2) the partially edentulous patient, and 3) the completely dentate patient. (see Appendix B, Appendix C, Appendix D) The classifications use specific diagnostic criteria to delineate treatment complexity into four classes: Class I (ideal or minimally compromised), Class II (moderately compromised), Class III (substantially compromised) or Class IV (severely compromised)

pros·tho·don·ticspl but sing or pl in constr (1947): prosthodontics is the dental specialty pertaining to the diagnosis, treatment planning, rehabilitation and maintenance of the oral function, comfort, appearance and health of patients with clinical conditions associated with missing or deficient teeth and/or maxillofacial tissues using biocompatible substitutes—see FIXED PROSTHODONTICS, IMPLANT PROSTHODONTICS, MAXILLOFACIAL PROSTHETICS, REMOVABLE PROSTHODONTICS

pros·tho·don·tist 1: a specialist in prosthodontics 2: a dentist who has successfully completed an advanced education program in prosthodontics that is accredited by the appropriate accrediting body. In the United States, that body is the Commission on Dental Accreditation of the American Dental Association—see BOARD-CERTIFIED P., BOARD-ELIGIBLE P., EDUCATIONALLY QUALIFIED P.

pro·ta·no·pia : a form of dichromatism in which red and blue-green stimuli are confused

protanomalous vision : a form of color deficient vision in which the ability to perceive blue and yellow is retained. Hue discrimination is poor in the red to green region of the spectrum

pro·tru·sion : a position of the mandible anterior to centric relation—see LATEROPROTRUSION

pro·tru·sivepro·tru·sive·lypro·tru·sive·ness : thrusting forward; adjective denoting protrusion


protrusive condyle path : the path the condyle travels when the mandible is moved forward from its initial position

protrusive deflection : a continuing eccentric displacement of the midline incisal path on protrusion, symptomatic of a restriction of movement

protrusive deviation : discursive movement on protrusion that ends in the centered position and is indicative of interference during movement

protrusive jaw relation : a jaw relation resulting from a protrusion of the mandible (GPT-4)

protrusive interocclusal record : a registration of the mandible in relation to the maxillae when both condyles are advanced in the temporal fossa

protrusive movement: mandibular movement anterior to centric relation.

protrusive occlusion : an occlusion of the teeth when the mandible is protruded (GPT-4)


protrusive relation : the relation of the mandible to the maxillae when the mandible is thrust forward (GPT-4)

provisional cementation: cementation of an interim or definitive restoration with a luting agent with weak retentive properties to facilitate the planned future removal of the restoration

provisional denture: see INTERIM PROSTHESIS

provisional prosthesis: see INTERIM PROSTHESIS

provisional restoration: see INTERIM PROSTHESIS

provisional splint : an interim device to stabilize teeth during diagnosis or therapy—syn INTERIM SPLINT

prox·i·mal 1: situated close to 2: next to or nearest the point of attachment or origin, a central point especially, located toward the center of a body—comp DISTAL—prox·i·mal·ly adj

proximal contact: see INTERPROXIMAL CONTACT

pseudoisochromatic color tests : tests for detecting color vision deficiency. The charts are made up of colored spots that yield a legible pattern (number, letter, figure, etc.,) for a normal observer but yield no legible pattern for observers with anomalous types of color vision

psy·cho·phys·i·cal: used to describe the sector of color science that deals with the relationship between physical description or specification of stimuli and the sensory perception arising from them

psychophysical color : a specification of color stimulus in terms of operationally defined values, such as three tri-stimulus values

psychosomatic dentistry 1: dentistry that concerns itself with the mind-body relationship 2: dentistry that acknowledges a relationship between the psychic and normal physiological functions

pterygoid notch: see PTERYGOMAXILLARY NOTCH

pterygoid plates : broad, thin, wing-shaped processes of the spheroid bone separated by the pterygoid fossa. The inferior end of the medial plate terminates in a long curved process or hook for the tendon of the tensor veli palatini muscle. The lateral plate gives attachment to the medial and lateral pterygoid muscles

pterygomaxillary notch : the palpable notch formed by the junction of the maxilla and the pterygoid hamulus of the sphenoid bone

pulp : the richly vascularized connective tissue of mesodermal origin with much innervation contained in the central cavity of the tooth

pulp capping : application of a material to protect the pulp from external influences and promote healing, done either directly or indirectly

pulpectomy : the complete removal of the dental pulp

pulpitis : inflammation of the dental pulp

pulpotomy : surgical amputation of the coronal portion of the dental pulp

1pum·ice 1: a type of volcanic glass used as an abrasive. It is prepared in various grits and used for finishing and polishing2: a polishing agent, in powdered form, used for natural teeth and fixed and removable restorations

2pum·ice ; pum·iced ; pum·ic·ing : to finish or dress with pumice

pyramidal fracture : a fracture of the midfacial bones, with the principal fracture lines meeting at an apex in the area of the nasion—called also Le Fort II fracture

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