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Ivoclar Vivadent: A Pioneer in Dental Composite Development
When Edward Lowe, DMD started practicing dentistry in 1986, the first composites he used were a microfill and a hybrid, which were only for use in the anterior. “Back then, posterior composites were just a dream,” he reminisces. “The products available on the market were prone to microleakage and recurrent decay, and were generally considered a failure.”
In the more than 25 years that have passed since Lowe began practicing, dental composites have evolved considerably, and now a myriad of options are available to clinicians that allow them to work predictably anywhere in the mouth. “There are so many choices, including microhybrid, nanohybrid, flowable, and packable composites,” says Lowe fondly. “The latest trend seems to be bulk-filled posterior composites that are fast-setting and simple to use.”
When choosing composites for a given application, Lowe, a key opinion leader in the field of cosmetic dentistry, esteems quality over all other attributes—including price. “I always look at research and clinical studies before choosing a material, and I’m not easily taken in by gimmicks,” he asserts. “I also use different composites for the anterior and posterior regions.”
In Lowe’s opinion, a good anterior composite must have an ample choice of shades; be highly polishable; offer dentin, enamel, and incisal shades; and possess good physical properties. A quality posterior composite, he suggests, must have “great” physical properties, high-wear resistance, excellent depth of cure, and offer good handling and sculptability. “Also,” he notes, “both anterior and posterior composites should be resistant to ambient light.”
Lowe says he consistently uses Ivoclar Vivadent composites in his Vancouver, BC-based practice because they meet his very high standards. “Ivoclar Vivadent’s composites are unique in the industry because the company really does its due diligence in research and development. Their products go through rigorous testing and clinical trials before being released to the market. This means that when I use an Ivoclar Vivadent product, I am able to trust that it will perform as expected,” Lowe says.
Ivoclar Vivadent offers clinicians a wide range of composite materials for a variety of different indications. These include anterior composites, posterior composites, universal composites, composites for direct resin veneers, and core buildup composites, to name a few. However, one product that Lowe draws particular attention to is Tetric EvoCeram® Bulk Fill, an easily moldable, nanohybrid composite that is well-suited for bulk filling. The company recently upgraded the product’s formula to include the polymerization booster Ivocerin™, which allows clinicians to provide a deeper and more efficient depth of cure without having to increase translucency or reduce working time. This is because the absorption spectrum of Ivocerin fills the gap between the traditional light-initiators already on the market. With Ivocerin, clinicians can cure 4-mm thick layers of material in as little as 10 seconds, according to the company.
Tetric EvoCeram Bulk Fill’s smooth consistency facilitates excellent adaptation to cavity walls, allowing for bulk placement without the need for flowable liners or additional equipment. The material also features a shrinkage stress reliever, which keeps shrinkage as low as possible during the polymerization stages. “Ivoclar’s Tetric EvoCeram products are known for being pioneers in the composite industry, and this newest iteration is no different,” says Lowe.
While Tetric EvoCeram Bulk Fill is intended for posterior procedures, Lowe says the product, which is available in three enamel-like universal shades, offers highly esthetic qualities. “It allows for excellent shade adaptation, resulting in easily achieved, high-quality results.”
Another reason that Lowe is partial to Ivoclar Vivadent’s composite offerings is the wealth of resources available to clinicians on the company’s website (ivoclarvivadent.com). “Their product instructions are extremely clear and are available at all times online,” he says.
As composites continue to improve, Lowe is hoping to see a number of innovations in the coming years. “I would love to see composites that offer a 10-mm depth of cure with a 10-second cure, or composites that expand to fit a cavity preparation as they set,” he muses. If Ivoclar Vivadent’s composite technology continues to progress at the rate that it has been, Lowe and other clinicians just may have this sort of convenience at their fingertips in the coming years.
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