Composites - Measuring Tips

Dentists want to know if they can measure teeth that are partly or entirely made by dental composites.



  1. The ShadeVision instrument needs a glossy surface to get a proper shade assessment. If a surface has a dull finish, it will measure higher in value than it really is. The dull finish also may interfere with positioning the instrument during measurement as it could obscure the glare artifact.

  2. Gloss matters. If a composite is being measured, it should be inspected first. If the gloss is low, polish it before measurement. This also relates to why ShadeVision can't be used in measuring partially completed restorations. The surface typically is dull and grainy until the porcelain is glazed.

  3. On a similar note, teeth that are stained and/or discolored should be cleaned prior to measuring. Common sense tells you that if a restoration is matched to a discolored tooth, and then that discoloration is removed, the restoration will no longer match.

  4. The same holds true for bleaching. The teeth will continue to change for up to two weeks following the patient’s last bleaching. Shade taking should not be done prior to two weeks following the patient’s last treatment.

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