Always well illuminated: How to avoid dispersion loss
As a dentist, you know that: Efficient working methods save time and money. Nothing is more annoying than having to repeat procedures two or three times - or even producing inadequate results - due to inefficient materials or equipment.
Therefore, always ensure that everything meets your clinical needs. Even light polymerization. In the following, we have summarized useful information about the light guide and light transmission - were you already aware of these aspects?
Methods of light transmission
In a curing device, if a light guide is not used and the LED is mounted directly at the front of the light tip, there can be a considerable loss of light dispersion, especially when the material to be polymerized is at a substantial distance away. In practice, for example in the case of deep cavities or difficult-to-access proximal areas, a greater distance to the material is unavoidable. In this case, it is important to increase the exposure time accordingly.
Glass fibre rods are an advantage
Fibre rods have proven particularly useful for reducing dispersion loss. They consist of many individual glass fibres. These are embedded in a protective glass with precisely defined light transmissions. Parallel-walled (standard) light guides are advantageous. Compared to the tapering turbo light guides, these are characterized by particularly good radiation qualities. Once there is a distance of approx. 8 to 9 mm the available energy is halved, and then, according to Total Energy Concept, the exposure time would need to be doubled.
What else to consider
- In addition to the optical properties, other additional parameters are important to you as a clinician in your daily routine:
- In order to obtain better access to all tooth surfaces, use a freely rotatable light guide that is shortened at the tip. This allows more comfortable treatment, especially in children: The mouth does not have to be opened extremely wide.
- Another advantage is if the light guide has a wider diameter (about 10 mm). This enables you to completely light-cure large area cavities and MOD fillings. Time-intensive multiple exposures are therefore no longer required.
- In order to meet the highest hygienic standards, your light guide should be removable from the hand piece and possible to place in the autoclave.
Avoid mistakes for more efficient work
Conclusion: Even with a few easy-to-implement measures, you can reduce dispersion loss during light-curing and avoid handling errors. Ultimately this helps you to work more efficiently.
Would you be interested in any more tips for working with curing lights efficiently? Download the complete checklist which contains all the important criteria for purchasing an LED curing light.