Dental materials--what goes where? The current status of glass ionomer as a material for loadbearing restorations in posterior teeth

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Colleges, School and Institutes


UNLABELLED: Glass ionomer materials have been available for 40 years, but have not been indicated for loadbearing restorations, other than when used in the ART concept. However, there is anecdotal evidence that dentists are using the reinforced versions of this material in posterior teeth, possibly as a result of demands from patients to provide them with tooth-coloured restorations in posterior teeth at a lower cost than resin composite. This paper reviews the existing literature on reinforced glass ionomer restorations in posterior teeth, concluding that, under certain circumstances (which are not fully elucidated) these materials may provide reasonable service. However, the patient receiving such restorations should be made aware of the minimal amount of evidence for the success of these restorations and the potential need for the restorations to be re-surfaced in due course.

CLINICAL RELEVANCE: Reinforced glass ionomer restorations may provide patients with tooth-coloured restorations in posterior teeth, but their survival may not equate to restorations in resin composite in loadbearing situations.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)840-4
Number of pages5
JournalDental Update
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2013


  • Bicuspid/pathology, Bite Force, Dental Restoration, Permanent, Glass Ionomer Cements/chemistry, Humans, Molar/pathology, Stress, Mechanical, Surface Properties, Survival Analysis