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2. Restorative Instruments

2-3. CLASSES OF CAVITY PREPARATIONS

Cavity preparation is the term used to describe the process of preparing a tooth to receive a restoration. It includes the removal of decayed material, the necessary cutting and shaping of remaining tooth structure, and the cleaning of the prepared area. Certain basic principles of cavity preparation, first advanced by the American dentist, Dr. G. V. Black, in the early part of this century, still serve as standards. These principles provide for convenience in placing the restoration, retention of the restoration, sufficient bulk and strength of restoration and remaining tooth structure, and prevention of further dental caries. The design of the cavity preparation must take into account the location and size of the cavity, the stresses to which it will be subjected, and the type of restorative material to be used. Cavity forms are classified according to the tooth surfaces involved.

a. Class I cavity preparations (pits and fissures) are one-surface preparations which involve the occlusal surfaces or the occlusal two-thirds of the facial or lingual surfaces of a posterior tooth or the lingual pits of maxillary anteriors.

b. Class II cavity preparations are those that involve the proximal surfaces of posterior teeth.

c. Class III cavity preparations are one-surface preparations that involve the proximal surfaces of anterior teeth.

d. Class IV cavity preparations are those that involve the proximal surfaces and the incisal angle of anterior teeth.

e. Class V cavity preparations are one-surface preparations that involve the gingival third of the labial, buccal, or lingual surfaces of any teeth.

f. Class VI cavity preparations are those that involve areas not normally affected by dental caries such as the incisal edges of anterior teeth and the cuspal tips of posterior teeth. This class is in addition to Dr. G. V. Black's original five classes.


David L. Heiserman, Editor

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Revised: June 06, 2015