dental02.jpg (11342 bytes)Fundamentals of
Dental Materials

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Dental Resins, Miscellaneous Dental Materials, and Dental Gold/Alloys

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2-4. ACID ETCH TECHNIQUE

Cavities requiring added retention (to hold firmly) are treated with an acid etching technique. This technique improves the seal of the composite resin to the cavity wall. The enamel adjacent to the margins of the preparation is slightly decalcified with a 40 to 50 percent phosphoric acid solution. This etched enamel enhances the mechanical retention of the composite resin. In addition, the acid etch technique is used to splint unstable teeth to adjacent teeth. The acid is left on the cut tooth structure only 15 seconds, in accordance with the directions for one common commercial brand. The area is then flushed with water for a minimum of 30 seconds to remove the decalcified material. Etched tooth structure will have a chalky appearance.

David L. Heiserman, Editor

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Revised: May 22, 2017