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Aust Dent J. 2011 Mar;56(1):10-5; quiz 103. doi: 10.1111/j.1834-7819.2010.01304.x.

Therapeutic effect of glass-ionomers: an overview of evidence.

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Division of Public Oral Health, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa.


The requirements for an ideal restorative material include adhesion to tooth structure (enamel and dentine) and an ability to withstand the traumas of occlusion. However, some level of an anticaries effect is also desirable. After a long history of glass-ionomer cement (GIC) development, an evidence base in support of the therapeutic effect of GIC, particularly with regard to its anticaries effect, is emerging. This evidence is increasingly presented through systematic reviews of clinical GIC application and, to a certain extent, relates to a caries-preventive effect of the material itself. However, the strength of evidence supporting other aspects of GIC, such as a higher remineralizing effect, fluoride uptake in hard tooth tissue and fluoride release of GIC, is limited. Nevertheless, the results of these in situ and laboratory trials provide valuable insights into factors that facilitate understanding of the clinical efficacy of GIC.

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