Dental Amalgam (Uses & Composition)
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Dental Amalgam (Uses & Composition)

Amalgams

Dental Material

Dental Amalgam (Uses & Composition)

An amalgam is defined as a special type of alloy in which mercury is one of the components.

When alloy and mercury is mixed together a chemical reaction occurs which leads to formation of a plastic mass which is condensed into the prepared cavity in a tooth. This plastic mass hardens by formation of solid reaction.


Uses of Dental Amalgam:

  1. Permanent filling material: Class I, II, V cavities.
  2. With metallic retentive pins
  3. Retrograde root canal fillings
  4. Dies

Composition and its function:

Silver

Major element in the reaction

↑ the strength

↓ creep

Whitens the alloy

↑ resistance to tarnish

↑ expansion on setting


Tin

Reduces strength and hardness

Reduces resistance to tarnish and corrosion

Controller for the speed at which reaction between Silver and Mercury takes place

Usually used in small amount


Copper

↑ Hardness and Strength

↑ Setting expansion


Zinc

Acts as scavenger or deoxidizer

Does not affect setting reaction of amalgam

Prevents oxidation while manufacturing by reacting with oxygen and other impurities

Causes delayed expansion if amalgam mix is contaminated by moisture during condensation or trituration


Mercury

Reacts with other metals to form a plastic mass


Palladium

Hardens and whitens the alloy


Platinum

Hardens the alloy

↑ resistance to corrosion


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