Achieving ideal proximal contacts with IPR Strips

April 17, 2017

An evaluation of the IPR Strip System from ContacEZ.

Achieving ideal proximal contacts is of paramount importance to ensuring complete marginal seating of crowns, veneers, inlays/onlays and contouring direct composite restorations. Interproximal contacts that are too tight can result in incomplete marginal seating of full-coverage restorations, extrusion of adjacent teeth and crowding of anterior teeth. Patients may subsequently experience discomfort, hypersensitivity and recurrent marginal decay.

Additionally, interproximal reduction may be required when patients are undergoing orthodontic treatment with either clear aligners or esthetic brackets (e.g., Invisalign®, ClearCorrect, eCligner, Six Month Smiles®). In such instances, it is imperative that the interproximal enamel be stripped without creating sharp corners or subgingival ledges.

Precisely establishing ideal interproximal contacts facilitates optimal oral hygiene, long-term gingival health and restorative stability. However, creating interproximal contacts that represent what exists in nature can be difficult. After utilizing traditional interproximal reduction methods, confirming the presence of adequate clearance may be difficult to ascertain with flossing.

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What can greatly enhance interproximal reduction efforts is using a clinically proven method for determining and adjusting proximal contacts that incorporates a system of innovative strips (e.g., ContacEZ IPR Strips). This approach enables ideal proximal reduction and stripping to be achieved accurately and with minimal time and effort. As a result, crowns and other indirect restorations can be completely seated, and patients can experience enhanced comfort and functionality after definitive cementation, direct composite placement and/or during orthodontic bracket/aligner therapy.

A systematic approach

The ContacEZ IPR System promotes safe and accurate interproximal enamel stripping utilizing flexible diamond strips that curve and conform to the natural contours of the teeth. This maximizes patient comfort and safety, without creating sharp corners or sub-gingival ledges. Ergonomically designed for single-handed use, the ContacEZ IPR strips provide optimal tactile control and will not remove excessive enamel. ContacEZ IPR strips are effective for anterior and posterior areas and will not injure (i.e., cut) lips or gums. Not only do ContacEZ IPR strips save valuable chair-time and promote efficiency, but their central opening facilitates maximum visual perception.

The yellow IPR Starter strip is a 0.06-mm single-sided, extra-fine diamond strip with a serrated edge to safely and easily open the contact. The red IPR Opener strip is a double-sided, 0.12-mm medium diamond strip for gently opening the contact and reducing enamel on two teeth. The ContacEZ dark blue IPR Widener is a coarse 0.15-mm double-sided diamond strip for efficiently widening interproximal spaces and reducing enamel. The green IPR extra-widener is a double-sided, 0.20-mm coarse diamond strip for safely widening interproximal spaces further for ideal alignment.

In addition, optional strips can help further reduce and enlarge interproximal areas. Among them are a serrated 0.10-mm Clear IPR single-sided opener, which features medium fine diamond grit for reducing enamel on the proximal surface of one tooth; a 0.12-mm medium-coarse diamond cyan IPR Single-Sided Widener strip for further reducing interproximal enamel on the surface of one tooth; a 0.25-mm purple IPR double-sided coarse diamond super-widener that also further widens the interproximal space between two teeth; and a brown 0.30-mm IPR double-sided coarse diamond mega-widener that creates an extra-wide interproximal space between two teeth.

CPS assistant evaluation team

Some of the evaluators reported that they found that utilizing the ContacEZ to be a simple and smooth process. Of those surveyed, 82 percent stated that they were either extremely likely or very likely to purchase the ContacEZ for their practice. Several commented that the two grips provided exceptional handling properties, making it easy to grasp and access small spaces. One of those surveyed also commented that the flexible design allows the operator to polish the restoration easily, mimicking the contour of the tooth.

The evaluators were asked about their favorite feature of this product, and 50 percent of evaluators stated the ease of use, followed by 25 percent who said size of the strips. In addition to ease of use, the ContacEZ is also autoclavable, making it reusable and cost-effective.

Clinical tips

When asked for clinical tips while using ContacEZ, one evaluator stated, “It is so simple to use, I am not sure anyone would need any tips.” Others surveyed commented that these strips were ideal for Class IV restorations, and another suggested using an assorted pack of strips to determine a preference in grit. Additionally, when asked about suggestions for improvements, they would love to have a larger multiple pack for greater supply purchase.

Conclusion

The ContacEZ IPR Strips represent an efficient tool for thoroughly finalizing restorations that is reusable for increased efficiency and ease of use. Of those surveyed, 93 percent stated that they would recommend this product to a team member or other professional. On the 5-point diamond scale, dental team members who evaluated the ContactEZ rated it, on average, a 4-diamond rating.