Different irradiation protocols are proposed to polymerize dental resins, and discordances remain concerning their impact on the material. To improve this knowledge, we studied entrapment of free radicals in unfilled Bis-GMA/TEGDMA (50:50 wt%) resin after light cure. The tested hypothesis was that various irradiation parameters (curing time, irradiance, and radiant exposure) and different irradiation modes (continuous and pulse-delay) led to different amounts of trapped free radicals. The analysis of cured samples (n = 3) by electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) revealed that the concentrations of trapped free radicals significantly differed according to the curing protocol. When continuous modes with similar radiant exposure were compared, higher concentrations of trapped free radicals were measured for longer times with lower irradiance. Concerning pulse modes, the delay had no influence on trapped radical concentration. These results give new insights into the understanding of the photopolymerization process and highlight the relevance of using EPR when studying polymerization of dimethacrylate-based materials.
- dimethacrylate resin
- trapped free radicals
- irradiation modes
- electron paramagnetic resonance