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Are There Side Effects to Different Types of Dental Cement?

Posted on 5/17/2017 by Dr. Frank Sallustio
A woman happy with her dental veneers.
Dental restorations - veneers, crowns, fixed bridges - are used to solve a variety of issues. Veneers cover minor imperfections, such as chips or discoloration. Crowns provide strength to a weakened, damaged tooth.

Fixed bridges replace one or more missing teeth. All of these restorations are meant to be permanent, and in order to affix them securely in place, your dentist uses dental cement.

People are becoming more aware of what is being put in and on their bodies, and there is a concern as to whether or not there are side effects to the different types of cements.

Dental Cement

Dental cement is the adhesive used to securely hold your dental restorations in place. There are four commonly used types of cement that your dentist may use:

•  Glass ionomer (GI). Used frequently for metal and porcelain fused to metal restorations, glass ionomer cements are very thin and tolerate moisture very well. They also contain fluoride.
•  Resin-modified glass ionomer (RGMI). This type of cement is similar to GI cement, except that it is insoluble in water, and therefore preferred for areas where moisture is an issue.
•  Resin cements that require total etching. A traditional resin cement, this type requires the tooth to be treated with an acid prior to application. This cement is usually used for veneers and other ceramic restorations.
•  Self-etching resin. A newer version of traditional resin cement that doesn't require pretreatment.

Are There Side Effects?
There is a question as to whether or not dental cements cause side effects. GI cements contain fluoride, which is often seen as a good thing for remineralizing teeth. However, there are many people who are opposed to fluoride, as too much of it can cause fluorosis, or white spots on your teeth.

Another common concern is an allergic reaction to the different materials used in different cements. The risk of actually having a reaction to dental cement is very low.

Generally speaking, dental cements are safe for affixing your restorations. Be sure to discuss your concerns, and your medical history, with your dentist before undergoing any restorative procedure.

Please contact our office if you have and questions about dental cement.

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Frank Sallustio, DDS
Diplomate, American Board of Prosthodontics
13802 West Camino Del Sol, Suite 102
Sun City West, AZ 85375-4486
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