dental02.jpg (11342 bytes)Fundamentals of
Dental Materials

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Gypsum Products, Dental Waxes, and Impression Materials

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3-5. INLAY WAX

a. General. Inlay wax is used to prepare patterns. These patterns are reproduced in gold or other material in the fabrication of inlays, crowns, and fixed and removable partial dentures. Inlay wax is sometimes called casting wax.

b. Properties. For success in these procedures, the wax must have properties which will enable very close adaptation to the prepared portions of the tooth to be restored, must provide freedom from distortion, must permit detailed carving without flaking or chipping, and must not leave excessive residue when it is removed from a mold by burning. The wax should harden at body temperature but soften at a temperature low enough to permit it to be manipulated in a plastic state in the mouth without injury to pulp or oral tissues. Its color should contrast with the colors of teeth and oral tissues to facilitate carving, except that ivory wax is used to avoid risk of color contamination when porcelain or acrylic restorations are constructed. Because of the importance of certain qualities of these waxes, the ADA has developed certain specifications with which an inlay wax must comply to be acceptable.

c. Usage. Inlay wax is available in blue, green, ivory, or deep purple sticks, in preformed shapes for partial dentures, and in solidly packed cans. It is hard at room temperatures and breaks if bent sharply. This wax remains hard at mouth temperature and may be carved either in or out of the mouth. It is softened with dry heat or by immersion in warm water until pliable.

David L. Heiserman, Editor

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Revised: May 22, 2017