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What is dental cement and why dentist use it?

August 20, 2019


What is dental cement and why dentist use it?

In the diverse practice of dentistry, dental cement is commonly used just as much like a dental drill. Dental cement is the glue that bonds a wide range of dental and orthodontic applications to the tooth surface. Because of this wide range of use, dental cement comes in a variety of forms that are used for temporary or permanent restorations.

Dental cement is chemical compounds that bond two surfaces. For dental applications, dental cement should exhibit these ideal characteristics for a patient’s dental application to have longevity and remain comfortable:

  1. Can resist the stress and pressure when under load from biting and chewing.
  2. Does not irritate the pulp.
  3. Resistant to decay and provide a secure seal.
  4. The adhesive creates a strong bond between the tooth and restorative material.

What are some common dental cement?

A dentist can choose from a wide range of dental cement that is best suited for a particular dental procedure. Modern dental cement has come a long way since its earliest uses in dentistry. Below is a list of common cement types of cement used in modern dentistry:

  1. Zinc Phosphate can be used for bonding metal crowns and orthodontic bands.
  2. Zinc Polycarboxylate can be used for bonding porcelain restorations or metal crowns.
  3. Zinc oxide eugenol can be used for temporary crowns and bridges.
  4. Glass ionomers can be used for metal and metal-ceramic restorations and porcelain restorations.
  5. Resin modified glass ionomers can be used for core buildup and crowns.

These are only a few examples of the types of cement that your dentist can choose.

When does a dentist use temporary or permanent dental cement?

Temporary cement is used when a temporary crown or prosthesis is fit until the permanent crown or prosthesis can be made. A permanent cement, in this case, is not desirable because the temporary crown will have to be removed. Temporary dental cement such as zinc oxide eugenol would be a good choice since it has a weak bonding characteristic. Some dentist will use temporary cement to evaluate how the patient will respond to the restoration and how the tissue surrounding the restoration responds.

Permanent cement restorations are used for a permanent attachment. This type of cement develops a strong bond with the restoration and tooth. Permanent cement is often used as a luting material to cement crowns and bridges. The cement acts fill the space between the inner walls of the dental crown and the prepared tooth.

Know that we know how dental cement is used, you will be more knowledgeable next time you visit your dentist. If you are ready to book your next dental appointment, be sure to contact California Dental Group at (800) 407-0161 to make your appointment.

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