Glass Ionomer Cement (GIC)
Glass ionomer cement is a tooth-coloured cement made up of silicate glass-powder and bonds directly with the tooth surface. GIC fillings are typically used for:
- Temporary fillings.
- Decay that is located around the gumlines.
- Baby teeth.
- Fissure protections
As fluoride is part of the silicate glass-powder, glass ionomer fillings have the unique advantage of being able to slowly release fluoride over time to the surrounding area – helping prevent future cavities and protect your teeth. Their use is primarily due to their flexibility – they are easier to apply compared to composite fillings
The benefits of GIC
- Fluoride release
- Easy preparation – less invasive
- Can be used for deep fillings as a base, then covered by composite to offer the benefits of fluoride and strength also known as the sandwich technique and has extremely high rates of success based on research.
- Bonds to tooth structure without the need for bonding agents, which also means that strict moisture control is not as critical
- Biocompatible, meaning that they are unlikely to cause allergic reactions or other adverse effects
Potential drawbacks of GIC
- Less durable than some other filling materials, such as composite resin or metal. They may not be suitable for use in areas of the mouth that experience a lot of biting force
- Can wear down or erode over time, particularly in areas where there is a lot of friction or pressure.