To determine the ability of dental professionals to deliver a radiant exposure of at least six J/cm2 in 10 seconds to simulated restorations.
The study initially examined 113 light-emitting-diode (LED) light polymerization units (LPUs) used in dental offices to determine if they could deliver at least 6 J/cm2 radiant exposure (RE) in 10s. This assessment was completed by using a laboratory-grade light measuring device (checkMARC, BlueLight Analytics, Halifax, NS, Canada). The participating dental professionals whose LPUs could deliver 6 J/cm2 then used their own LPU to light-cure simulated anterior and posterior restorations in the MARC Patient Simulator (BlueLight Analytics). They then received specific instructions and were retested using the same LPUs. Data were statistically analyzed with a series of one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA), two-way ANOVA, paired-samples t-tests, Fisher post hoc multiple comparison tests, and McNemar tests with a preset alpha of 0.05 (SPSS Inc).
Ten (8.8%) LPUs could not deliver the required RE to the checkMARC in 10s and were eliminated from the study. For the anterior restoration, most dental practitioners (87.3%) could deliver at least 6 J/cm2 before instructions. After receiving additional light-curing instructions, only two (1.9%) participants were unable to deliver 6 J/cm2 to the anterior location. At the posterior location, only 55.3% (57) participants could deliver at least 6 J/cm2 before the instructions. After receiving these instructions, an additional 32 participants delivered at least 6 J/cm2. Overall, after receiving instructions on how to use the LPU correctly, the participants improved the amount of RE they delivered to anterior and posterior restorations by 22.5% and 30%, respectively.
This study revealed that at the baseline, 44.7% of participating dental professionals failed to deliver 6 J/cm2 in 10s to the posterior simulated restoration when using their own LPU.