Glass ionomer cements are tooth-coloured materials that bond chemically to dental hard tissues and release fluoride for a relatively long period.
They have therefore been suggested as the materials of choice for the restoration of carious primary teeth.
However, the clinical performance of conventional and metal-reinforced glass ionomer restorations in primary molars is disappointing.
And although the handling and physical properties of the resin-modified materials are better than their predecessors, more clinical studies are required to confirm their efficacy in the restoration of primary molars.
Restoring carious teeth is one of the major treatment needs of young children. A restoration in the primary dentition is different from a restoration in the permanent dentition due to the limited lifespan of the teeth and the lower biting forces of children.
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As early as 1977, it was suggested that glass ionomer cements could offer particular advantages as restorative materials in the primary dentition because of their ability to release fluoride and to adhere to dental hard tissues.
And because they require a short time to fill the cavity, glass ionomer cements present an additional advantage when treating young children.
° Journal of the Canadian Dental Association
° Shiu-yin Cho, BDS, MDS / Ansgar C. Cheng, BDS, MS