The Caution of Dental Curing Light

Never turn off a dental curing light while the fan is still running – it will overheat. Always allow the fan to cool the light. Once the fan stops running, the light can safely be turned off.

Many LED guns also include the timer, battery charge indicator, curing mode adjustment button, and other controls. For most models, these controls are located on the top of the gun so they can viewed by both right-handed and left -handed operators. However, in some instances, the controls are located on the side of the handle visible only to right-handed operators. These lights would not be a good choice for the left-handed minority.

Wand Typical pencil-thin wands were usually found with argon lasers and the original plasma arcs, but these types were corded. The cordless wands of led curing lights have more bulk, but are still slimmer and lighter than the guns. Their activation mechanism using a pen grasp, however, may be somewhat awkward, especially if you are used to the triggers on guns.

Tips The power emitted from the face of curing tips is typically highest in the center and decreases as you get closer to the edge. If you are curing a large restoration and you are depending on the edge of the tip to cure critical areas like a veneer margin, you may be unknowingly undercuring.

For example, the mesiodistal width of a MOD preparation in a mandibular first molar may be 11mm. If you are using an 11mm tip, the power at its edges may not be strong enough to fully cure the marginal ridges. So, if you see fractures in these peripheral areas, it may be due to the restorative material not being cured properly to maximize its physical properties.

Using a tip too small could also cause brown lines at margins of veneers due to undercured resin cement. Large restorations would be better served in most instances by curing with a 13mm tip, which overlaps the restoration margins by several millimeters. However, the power output by a 13mm tip may be lower compared to smaller tips and may require longer curing times.