Do you “wedge” your teeth before a composite restoration in the lateral region?
Composite materials for direct restoration of the lateral tooth group are the most common in clinical practice. However, clinicians often need to make a lot of efforts in order to create reliable, tight interproximal contacts. Due to the polymerization shrinkage of composite materials, to create the correct contact point, it is necessary to separate the teeth by an amount exceeding the width of the matrix.One of the achievements that made it possible to more reliably obtain reliable contact is the use of a sectional matrix and a separation ring. Another recommendation that may be useful is to “wedge” the teeth before treatment (but after the administration of the anesthetic).
Despite the fact that preliminary wedging has existed for a long time, it remains relevant today. This method is the introduction of a wooden wedge (after the introduction of the anesthetic) into the proximal region, which must be restored before the preparation of the tooth begins. In addition to the separation of teeth, the pre-installation of the wedge has other advantages:
Helps protect interproximal fabrics and cofferdams
Helps protect the proximal surface of an adjacent tooth
As the tooth is prepared, the wedge must continuously move into the interproximal space to adapt to any weakening or displacement of the wedge. When setting the matrix, you must use a new wedge.
This approach allows you to get enough time to achieve the necessary orthodontic movement of the involved teeth to compensate for the thickness of the matrix strip and the polymerization shrinkage of the composite material.