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An Amalgam is an alloy that contains Hg as one of its constituents.

American National Standards Institute (ANSI) / American dental Association (ADA)

specification NO. 1 requires that amalgam alloys contain predominantly silver and tin.

Unspecified amounts of other elements for eg Cu, Zn, Au and Hg are allowed in
concentrations less than silver or tin content.

Alloys containing zinc in excess of 0.01% are zinc containing alloys. There is no
specification of low or high copper alloy per se.

Historically, amalgam alloys contain

65 wt % silver
29 wt % tin
<6 wt % copper

a composition close to that recommended by G V Black in 1896.

During 1970s high copper amalgams were developed.

The clinical success of amalgam restoration is based on meticulous attention to

detail. Each manipulative step from the time the cavity is prepared until the restoration
has been polished can have an effect on the physical and chemical properties of amalgam
and the success and failure of restoration violation of the fundamental principles of cavity
preparation has contributed substantially to failure.


 Strength

Compressive strength

Tensile strength

 Longevity
 Ease of use

 Clinically proven success.

* Amalgam is the only restorative material with an interfacial seal that improves over

The following is a list of clinical indication for amalgam restorations in Classes I, II, and

1) Moderate to large restoration

2) Restorations that are not in highly esthetic areas of mouth.

3) Restorations that have heavy occlusal contacts.

4) Restorations that can’t be well isolated.

5) Restorations that extends onto root surfaces

6) Foundations

7) Abutment teeth for R PD

8) Temporary of caries control restorations.


1) Esthetically prominent areas of post teeth

2) Small to moderate Class I & II restorations that can be well isolated.

3) Small Class VI restorations


1) Ease of use

2) High tensile strength

3) Excellent wear resistance

4) Favourable long term clinical research results

5) Lower costs than for composite

6) Bonded amalgam have ‘bonding’ benefits

The primary disadvantages of amalgam relate to

 Esthetics

 Increased tooth structure removal

Other are

1) Non insulating

2) Weakens tooth structure unless bonded.

3) More technique sensitive if bonded

4) More difficult tooth preparation

5) Initial microleakage

(LCTE 2.5 times greater than tooth).




 A complete examination diagnosis and treatment plan must be finalized.

 Assessment of operative site and assessment of occlusion

 Local Anesthesia Profound anesthesia contributes to a comfortable and

uninterrupted operative and usually results in a marked reduction in salivation.

 ISOLATION OF THE OPERATING SITE Isolation for amalgam restorations

can be accomplished with a rubber dam or cotton rolls.

 OTHER PREOPERATIVE CONSIDERATIONS For eg , wedge for restoring

a posterior proximal surface


Because of amalgam’s physical properties It

1) Must be Placed in a tooth preparation that provides for or 90 degree or greater

restoration angle at cavosurface margin.

2) Should have minimum thickness of 0.75 to 2 mm.

3) Should be placed into a prepared undercut form in the tooth in order to be

mechanically retained.


Conservative preparation is recommended to
* protect the pulp

* presence the strength of tooth

* reduce deterioration of amalgam restoration

Features of conservative preparations are

* minimal extension of tooth preparations

* supra gingival margins

* rounded internal angles

INITIAL TOOTH PREPARATION (establishing the outline form by extension

of external walls to sound tooth structure, while maintaining a specified limited depth and
providing resistance and retention form )

The outline form for Class I occlusal amalgam tooth preparation should include only the
faulty occlusal pits & fissures.

Resistance principles include

1) Extending around the cusps to conserve tooth structure and prevent

internal line angles from approaching the pulp horns too close.

2) Keeping the facial and lingual margin extension as minimal as possible between
central groove and cusp tips.

3) Extending the outline to include fissures thereby placing the margins on relatively
smooth sound tooth structure.

4) Minimally extending into marginal ridges without removing the dentinal support.

5) Eliminating a weak wall of enamel by joining two outlines that come close
together (i.e. less than 0.5 mm apart)

6) Extending the outline form to include enamel undermined by caries

7) Using enameloplasty on the terminal ends of shallow fissure to conserve tooth


8) Establishing an optimal, conservative depth of the pulpal wall.


# 245 bur

- head length = 3 mm
- tip diameter = 0.8 mm
- slightly convergent towards shank
- slightly rounded corners of the end.

# 330 bur
- for smaller cavities
- pear shaped version of # 245 bur

Enter the deepest or most carious pit with a punch cut using No. 245 bur of high speed
with water spray long axis of bur in kept parallel to long axis of tooth.

* Depth of 1.5 mm is measured at central fissure

* Depth of prepared external walls will be 1.5 – 2 mm .
* Desired pulpal depth is 0.2 mm into DEJ.
* Faciolingual width of no more than 1 mm

If entering distal pit, bur is tilted distally to prevent undermining the marginal ridge. (not
more than 10 degrees).

The distance from the margin of such an extension to proximal surface should not
be less than

* 1.6 mm for premolar

* 2 mm for molars.

Maintain the burs orientation and depth while moving from central tissue towards the
mesial pit.

Care should be taken to not to undermine the marginal ridges.

If these fissures require extensions of more than a few tenths of millimeter,

* Change the bur size to smaller one.

Eg. # 169 L
# 329 L
* Use enameloplasty

Pulpal floor should follow DEJ to maintain a more uniform pulpal floor depth.

If fissure extends to marginal ridge, the long axis of bur should be changed to have slight
occlusal divergence to mesial wall, otherwise marginal ridge will be devoid of dentinal

The strongest an ideal enamel margin should be made up of full length enamel
rods resting on sound dentin, supported on the preparation side by shorter rods , also
resting on sound dentin .

Direction of mesial and distal walls is influenced by remaining thickness of marginal

ridge as measured from distal or mesial margin

Effect of various extensions in tooth preparation on tooth’s resistance to fracture

1. By crossing one marginal ridge at ¼ the intercuspal distance, there is almost 10%
loss of a tooth’s resistance to splitting.

2. BY crossing two marginal ridges at ¼ the intercuspal distance, there is almost

15% of a tooth’s resistance to splitting.
3. By crossing one marginal ridge at 1/3 the intercuspal distance, there is almost
30% loss of a tooth’s resistance to splitting.

4. By crossing two marginal ridges by 1/3 the intercuspal distance, there is almost
35% loss of a tooth’s resistance to splitting.

5. By crossing one marginal ridge at ½ the intercuspal distance, there is almost 40%
loss of tooth’s resistance to splitting.

6. By crossing two marginal ridges at ½ the intercuspal distance, there is almost

45% loss of a tooth’s resistance to splitting.

7. By crossing a crossing ridge at ¼ the intercuspal distance, there is almost 20%

loss of a tooth’s resistance to splitting.

8. By crossing a crossing ridge at 1/3 the intercuspal distance, there is almost 35%
loss of a tooth’s resistance to splitting.

9. By crossing a crossing ridge at ½ the intercuspal distance, there is almost 45%

loss of a tooth’s resistance to splitting.

* Mesial and distal walls must CONVERGE OCCLUSALLY when distance is greater
than 1.6 mm in premolars

* Mesial and distal walls must DIVERGE OCCLUSALLY if only 1.6 mm distance is left
Enameloplasty refers to eliminating the developmental fault by removing with the side of
flame shaped diamond stone. The surface left by enameloplasty should meet the tooth
preparation wall preferably with a cavosurface angle 80-100 degrees.

If enameloplasty is unsuccessful in eliminating mesial fissure extending to Marginal

Ridge, three alternatives are there

 Make no further changes in the outline form

 Extend through the marginal ridge when margins will be lingual to contact.

 Include the fissure in conservative Class II tooth preparation.


A, Developmental fault at terminal end of fissure.

B, Fine-grit diamond stone in position to remove fault.

C, Smooth surface after enameloplasty.

D,Cavosurface angle should not exceed 100 degrees, and marginal-amalgam angle should
not be less than 80 degrees. Enamel external surface (e) before enameloplasty When the
remaining fissure is no deeper-than one quarter to one third the thickness of enamel,
enameloplasty is indicated.

If enameloplasty is unsuccessful in eliminating mesial fissure extending to Marginal

Ridge, three alternatives are there
 Make no further changes in the outline form

 Extend through the marginal ridge when margins will be lingual to contact.

 Include the fissure in conservative Class II tooth preparation.


It includes

(1) Removal of remaining defective enamel and infected dentin on the pulpal floor

(2) Pulp protection

(3) Finishing external walls

(4) Cleaning and inspecting the prepared tooth

Removal of infected dentin is best accomplished by

 discoid type spoon excavator

 slowly revolving round carbide bur

If the tooth preparation is of ideal shallow depth no liner or base is indicated. In deeper
carious excavations place a thin layer of RMGI base.

RMGI should be placed in deeper areas Entire dentin surface should not be covered.
Dentin peripheral to liner should be available for bonding and support of restoration.

Occlusal cavosurface bevel is contraindicated in enamel preparations. Butt joint is

strongest, i.e.

Cavosurface angle = 90 – 100 degrees

Amalgam margins = 80 – 90 degrees


 The facial pit of mandibular molar

 The lingual pit of maxillary molar

 The occlusal pit of mandibular first premolar

 The occlusal pits and fissures of maxillary first molar

 The occlusal pit and fissures of the mandibulars second premolars

The preparation may be accomplished with a

- No. 245 bur

- No. 330 or 169 L bur if lesion is very small.

Retention grooves are added with No. ¼ or 33 ½ bur


On maxillary molars when a lingual fissure connects with distal oblique fissure and distal
pit on occlusal surface.


Preparation has occlusal and lingual convergence.


 Mesiodistal width of lingual extension should not exceed 1 mm, except when
caries are extensive.

 Tooth preparation should cut more at the expanse of oblique ridge rather than
centering over fissure

 On smaller teeth the occlusal portion may have a slight distal tilt to conserve the
dentin support of distal marginal ridge.

 Margins should extend as little as possible onto oblique ridge, DL cusp and distal
marginal ridge


Lingual extension may be accomplished by two techniques

I Lingual surface is prepared with burs long axis parallel with lingual surface
holding the tip of bur at the gingival extent of lingual fissure.
The axial wall should follow the contour of the lingual surface of tooth, with a
uniform depth of 0.5 mm inside the DEJ.

II No. 245 bur is held perpendicular to the cusp ridge and lingual surface as it
extends the preparation from the occlusal surface gingivally. If it is wider
mesiodistally additional retention by preparing locks in mesioaxial & distoaxial line


*depth of lock at the gingival floor is one half the diameter of No ¼ bur.
* The cutting direction of each lock is the bisector of respective line angle.
* Locks should diminish in depth towards the occlusal surface, terminating midway along
axial wall.




The occlusal outline from of a Class II tooth preparation for amalgam is similar to that for
Class I tooth preparation .Enter the pit nearest the involved proximal surface.
Before extending into the involved proximal marginal ridge, visualize the final location
of facial & lingual walls of proximal box relative to the contact area. This will prevent
the overextension of occlusal outline form where if joins the proximal box.

The initial procedure in preparing the outline form of the proximal box is isolation of
proximal enamel by proximal ditch cut.

Extend the preparation mesially, stopping approximately 0.8 mm short of cutting through
marginal ridge into contact area. 0.5 to 0.6 mm into dentin
With the same orientation of bur, cut the ditch gingivally 2/3rd at the expense of dentin
1/3rd at the expense of enamel.

The ideal dentinal depth of axial wall of proximal box should be 0.5 to 0.6 mm. When
extension places the margin in cementum, the initial pulpal depth should be 0.7 mm to
0.8 mm

Developing the mesiofacial wall perpendicular to the enamel rod direction and
conserving the facial cusp structure results in reverse curve in occlusal outline of Class II

It permits 90 o amalgam at mesiofacial margins and yet curves around the mesial portion
of facial cusp.

* mesiaofacial wall is perpendicular to the enamel rod direction
* conserves the facial tooth structure


One fourth the distance between the pulp tips

Extension of Margins

Facial/ lingual: Clearance of 0.2 – 0.3 mm

Gingival: clearance of 0.5 mm

The proximal ditch cut may be diverged gingivally to ensure the Faciolingual extension
at gingival is greater than occlusal

A, Bur position to proximal ditch cut.

B, Proximal ditch in extended gingivally to desired level of gingival wall (i.e., floor).
C, Variance in pulpal depth of axiolingual line angle as extension of gingival varies:
a, at minimal gingival extension;
b: at moderate extension;
c, at extension that places gingival margin in cementum, whereupon pulpal depth is 0.75
to 0.8 mm and bur may shave side of wedge.

D, Proximal ditch cut results in axial wall that follows outside contour of proximal
E, Position of proximal walls (i.e., facial, lingual, gingival) should not be overextended
with No. 245 bur, considering additional extension provided by hand instruments once
remaining spurs of enamel are removed



In tapered teeth in which gingival margin of the proximal portion of preparation is

located so far gingivally that preparing the regular facial and lingual retentive grooves
will undermine tooth structure at axial angle of the tooth, one of the two types of grooves
can be created.

(a) In line with axio pulpal line angle facially and lingually a groove is prepared on
each of the facial and lingual walls, respectively. Each groove is started at the axio
pulpal line angle and continues occlusally to the occlusal surface.

(b) Facial or lingual dentinal grooves may be prepared at the expense of facial or
lingual walls of proximal portion, but having their maximum dimension at the pulpal
floor level, tapering to a point termination at the bucco-gingivo-axial point angles i.e. the
reverse arrangement of the regular retentive groove

In a narrow proximal lesion it is permissible not to extend. The Outline of the proximal
box facially or lingually beyond the proximal contact to conserve the tooth structure.

To prevent the bur from marring the proximal surface of the adjacent tooth.

(a) Matrix band may be used around adjacent tooth

(b) A thin proximal enamel is spared which can be fractured out with a spoon

→ If the gingival cavosurface margin is in enamel, it will usually require a slight



(1) The pulpal and gingival walls being relatively flat and perpendicular to forces
directed with long axis of tooth

(2) Restricting extension

(3) Restricting occlusal outline form to areas receiving minimal occlusal contacts.

(4) Reverse curve

(5) Slightly rounding the internal line angles to reduce stress concentration

(6) Providing enough thickness of restorative material.

(7) Occlusal convergence of facial and lingual walls and occlusal dovetail.



Bur: # 169 L Bur ( with air coolant & reduced speed. )

* Position: Axiofacial & axio lingual line angles 0.2 mm inside the

* Translation: direction of movement of axis of bur

* Depth: extent of translation (0.5 mm at gingival floor)

* Occlusogingival orientation: Tilt of bur which dictates occlusal height of the lock.
(should disappear midway between enamel margin and dentin

Four characteristics of retentive locks.

A, Occlusal view of MO preparation before placement of retention locks.
B, Proximal view of MO preparation.
C and D, position, transition, and depth.
E, and F, Occlusogingival orientation

The use of retention locks in proximal boxes is controversial.

With high copper amalgam and dovetail design retention locks are unnecessary


Mandibular first premolar

When preparing the occlusal portion, bur is tilted occlusally (leading to facial
inclination of pulpal wall). Otherwise it will weaken the lingual cusp.

Excessive extension in facial direction could approach and expose facial cusp.

Maxillary first molar

Extension into enamel oblique ridge is avoided whenever possible to maintain the
cross splinting strength it provides to the tooth

When the occlusal fissure extends into the facial cusp ridge defect should be eliminated
by extension of tooth preparation, accomplished by tilting the bur to create an occlusal
divergence of facial wall, while maintaining the dentinal support.

In disto-occlusal tooth preparation an extension onto lingual surface should be prepared

only after disto-lingual proximal margin is established. It is accomplished by preparing
the lingual fissure extension more at the expense of mesio lingual cusp

Maxillary First Premolar

 Mesiofacial embrasure is esthetically prominent therefore Class II mesial

preparation requires special attention. The Occluso-gingival preparation of
facial wall of mesial box should be parallel to long axis of tooth rather than
converging occlusally to minimize unesthetic display of amalgam at
faciogingival corner of restoration. The facial extension should minimally
clear the contact.
 If mesial proximal involvement

* is limited to a fissure in marginal ridge.

* is not treatable with enameloplasty

* doesn’t involve the proximal contact

Then the proximal portion of the tooth is prepared by extending through the fault with #
245 bur so that margins are lingual to contact.
Often this means that the proximal box will be the Faciolingual width of the bur and
gingival floor may be at the same depth as pulpal floor.

 If proximal caries is limited to mesiolingual embrasure , do not involve the mesial

proximal contact in the tooth preparation.


 When restoring a small, cavitated proximal lesion in a tooth with neither occlusal
fissures nor a previously inserted occlusal restoration, a proximal box preparation
without an occlusal step has been recommended.

 To maximize retention, preparations facial and lingual wall should oppose each

 Retention locks are necessary


This is indicated if caries are appreciably gingival to proximal contact. The tooth
preparation is usually approached from facial and has a form of slot.

* Bur: No. 2 or No. 4

* Dimensions: 0.75 to 1 mm at the gingival aspect

1 – 1.25 mm at the occlusal wall

axial depth: 0.5 mm inside DEJ if Occlusal margin is in enamel.

* Retention grooves with a No. ¼ burs are prepared into occlusoaxial & gingivoaxial
line angles 0.2 mm inside the DEJ or 0.3 – 0.5 mm inside the cementoenamel cavosurface

The depth of these grooves is one half the diameter of bur head.

Ideally the direction of occlusal groove is slightly more occlusal than axial, and the
direction of an gingival groove would be slightly more gingival than axial.

The outline form for a MO teeth preparation on the rotated mandibular second premolar
has its proximal box displaced facially because proximal caries include mesiofacial line
angle of crown.

If lesion is small consideration must be given to slot preparation.


* Dovetail is not required unless a fissure emanating in occlusal step is involved in


* The occlusal fissure segmented by coalesced enamel should be treated with

individual amalgam restoration if preparations are separated by approximately. 0.5 mm or
more sound tooth structure.


Where two restoration adjoin care should be taken that outline of second restoration
doesn’t weaken the amalgam margin of first. The intersecting margins of two restorations
should be at right angles as much as possible. A weak wall of enamel joining two outlines
that are less than 0.5 mm apart should be removed.


 Class II lesion prepared and restored before preparing Class V lesion. This avoids
condensation problems which are encountered if both the lesions are prepared


 The facial and lingual proximal walls and respective occlusal margins must be
extended so that entire rest seat can be prepared in amalgam without encroaching
the occlusal margins.

 There should be minimum 0.5 mm of amalgam between rest seats and margins


Often a larger Class II restoration may require greater extension of occlusal surface
outline form. This may include
 Extending grooves that are fissured
 Capping cusps that are undermined.
 Extending the outline form up the occlusal inclines.

These extensions occur at same initial pulpal depths and follow DEJ. Alteration
in orientation of bur is also required, by tilting lingually while extending facially and


Rule for cups capping:

* If extension from a primary groove toward the cusp is no more than half the distance,
then no cusp capping;
* If this extension is from one half to two thirds of the distance, then consider cusp
* If the extension is more than two thirds of the distance, then usually cap the cusp

If indicated, cusp replacement increases the resistance form of tooth.


 Large proximal box preparations also need secondary retention features.

 When proximal extension around a line angle is necessary, it is usually
associated with a reduction in involved cusp.

Class III Amalgam Restorations


Distal surface of maxillary and mandibular canine if

(1) Preparation is extensive with only minimal facial involvement

(2) Gingival margin involves primarily cementum

(3) Moisture control is difficult.

Esthetically prominent areas.


A lingual approach is preferred over facial unless lesion is more facial than lingual.

Using a No. ½, 1, or 2 round bur prepare the outline form extending the external, walls to
sound tooth structure while extending pulpally to an initial depth of 0.75 mm.

Groove retention may be necessary groove is prepared 0.25 mm from root surface to a
depth of 0.25 mm. Groove is directed as the bisector of the angle formed by function of
axial wall and external wall. Usually the outline form includes only proximal surfaces.
However a lingual dovetail may be indicated if one existed previously or if additional
retention is needed for a larger restoration.


1) gingival groove

2) Incisal cove

(3) lingual dovetail


a) The decay extent may dictate a labial approach, in that case wall anatomy of
labial and lingual wall will be reversed.

b) If incisal wall is not bulky enough to accommodate a retentive groove without

underlying the distal slope, it may be replaced by a labial and to a lesser extent lingual

c) If horizontal gingival groove cannot be located without perforation to a surface

concavity, it can be replaced by deepening the point angle retention groove.

d) If labial or lingual walls is lost it is essential to create a very short wall to try to
lock the restoration.

This can be accomplished by deepening the axial wall at its labial or lingual
periphery and by establishing a very pronounced axiolabial or axio-lingual line angle

e) In senile decay, where incisal margin of lesion is apical to the contact area the
incisal wall will be one planed, inclining gingivodistally making an acute angle with axial

* Incisal angle is undermined or involved by lesion

* Labial and lingual walls are intact and bulky
* There is pronounced intact gingival floor
* A restoration that replaces the distal slope or Part of it will be subjected to that slope’s
mechanical problems

The general shape of cavity preparation is an inverted truncated cone.

Gingival and labial margins are exactly as described for Class III. The lingual
margin is located in lingual embrasure just clearing the contact. The incisal margin is
located at slope of incisal edge.


 If labial or lingual walls are not bulky enough to accommodate the retention
grooves, it is advisable to make them in two planes

Make them in two planes

* inner, dentinal plane at right angle to axial wall

* outer, enamelo-dentinal plane following the directions of enamel


 Sometimes the entire cavity preparation may be inclined inciso-lingually

especially in upper canine, resulting in preparation opening partially at its incisal
end. In such cases lingual wall must be more slanted in inciso-gingival direction
than labial wall.

 If retention forms are deficient, and some walls are either partially or totally lost,
pins should be used.
The outline form of the Class V amalgam tooth preparation is primarily determined by
location and size of caries or old restorative material.

Proper outline form for Class V amalgam tooth preparation results in extending the
cavosurface margins to sound tooth structure while maintaining a limited axial depth of
0.5 mm inside the DEJ and 0.75 mm inside the cementum when on root surface.


The lesion is entered by a tapering fissure bur. All the walls of the tooth preparation are
perpendicular to the external tooth surface, they usually diverge facially. Consequently
there is no inherent retention.

 Two retention grooves, one along incisoaxial line angle and other gingivoaxial
line angle are prepared using No. ¼ bur.

Alternatively, four retention cover may be prepared, one in each of the four axial
point angles. – This conserves dentin and reduces the possibility of mechanical pulp


Large lesions on the facial surface may extend beyond the line angles of the tooth.
Maxillary molar, particularly second molars are most commonly affected by these
extensive defects. If the remainder of the distal surface is sound and distal caries is
accessible facially, the facial restoration should extend around the line angle.

 If most of the facial or lingual surface is involved in a Class V lesion and they are
to be part of cavity preparation, the occlusal wall will diverge in occlusal
direction. This will decrease the retentive capability of the preparation. It is
advisable to make this divergence only at the areas where margin approximates
the occlusal surface. In this situation gingival retention grooves should at least be
doubled on size, and mesioaxial and disto-axial considerably.


, There are multiple lesions or defects in gingival third, which are limited in size, with
sound tooth structure separating them from each other The general shape of this design is
of several preparations which are small, box shaped and with rounded corners.

Complex posterior amalgam restorations should be considered when

(1) large amount of tooth structure is missing

(2) when one or more cusps need capping

(3) increased resistance and retention form are needed.

These are contraindicated if patient has severe occlusal problems or if tooth cannot be
properly restored with a direct restoration.


1) Conserves tooth structure

2) Can be completed in one appointment

3) Resistance and retention form is significantly increased

4) It is relatively inexpensive


1) Preparing pinholes and placing pins may create craze lines or fractures

2) Microleakage around all types of pins has been demonstrated.

3) The tensile strength and horizontal strength of pin retained amalgam

restoration is significantly reduced.


Any restoration requiring the placement of one or more pins in dentin to provide
adequate resistance and retention form.

Initial tooth preparation

The general concept of tooth preparation for amalgam is followed. The cusps reduction
is accomplished during initial tooth preparation only because it improves access and
visibility for subsequent steps.
The occlusal contour of the reduced cusp should be similar to normal contour of
the unreduced cusps. Final restoration should have restored cusps with minimal
thickness of 2 mm for functional cusps and 1.5 mm for non-functional cusps.

Other principles of retention form like converging opposite walls, flat pulpal
floors, facial or lingual grooves should also be undertaken.


Coves (horizontal plane) and locks (vertical plane) are preparation before preparing
pinholes and inserting pins

1) Cemented
2) Friction locked
3) Self threading → Most frequently used

• Cemented into pinholes
• 0.001 – 0.02 inch larger than diameter of pins
• The cementing media is any standard dental luting agent


• Diameter of prepared pinhole is 0.001 inch smaller than diameter of pin
• Pins are tapped into place, retained by resiliency of dentin.
• These are 2-3 times more retentive than cemented pins


o Diameter of prepared pinhole is 0.0015 inch 0.004 inch smaller

than diameter of pin.
o The resiliency of dentin permits insertion of threaded pin into a
hole of smaller diameter.
o They do not engage dentin for their entire width.
o These are 3-6 more retentive than cemented pins.

Vertical and horizontal stresses generated are maximum in self treading




1) Type: Self threading > Friction locked > cements

(from maximum to minimum retentiveness in dentin.)
2) Surface characteristics: Number and depth of serration or threads on
pin influence retention of pin in amalgam restoration.

3) Orientation, Number And Diameter

Placing pins in a non parallel manner increases their retention. Bending the pins
is not desirable, it weakens the pin and risk fracturing the dentin.

In general, increasing the number of pins increases the retention in dentin and
amalgam but benefits must be compared with potential problems created like.

* Crazing of dentin
* Amount of available dentin between pins, decreases Strength of amalgam restoration

4) Diameter: As diameter increases, retention in dentin and amalgam increases

5) Extension into dentin and amalgam

Retention is not increased significantly when depth of pin into dentin exceeds 2


PIN SIZE : four pin sizes are available with a corresponding colour coding drill.

Determining factors for selecting a appropriate size pin.

1) Amount of dentin available
2) Amount of retention desired.

Color code Pin dia (INCHES) drill dia (INCHES)

1) Regular Gold 0.031 0.027
2) Minim Silver 0.024 0.021
3) Minikin Red 0.019 0.017
4) Minuta Pink 0.015 0.0135

 Minikin pins are usually selected to reduce the risk of dentin crazing, pulpal
penetration and potential perforation.

 Minim are used as backup of pin holes for minikin was over prepared.

 Minuta is half to one third retentive as minim. It is too small to provide adequate
retention in posterior teeth.
NUMBER OF PINS: one pin for missing line angle is used.

Several factors must be considered

(1) amount of missing tooth structure
(2) amount of dentin available
(3) amount of retention required
(4) size of pin.


Several factors aid in determining pinhole locations

(1) pulp anatomy and contours of teeth
(2) recent radiograph
(3) periodontal probe
(4) patient age

 Consideration must be given to placement of pin in area where greatest

bulk of amalgam will occur

 A pin placed directly below the occlusal contact weakens amalgam


 Occlusal clearance should be sufficient to provide 2 mm amalgam over


Caputo & standlee state that ideally, pinholes should be located half way between pulp
and DEJ or external surface of tooth root.

Standlee and others have shown that there should at least 1 mm of sound dentin around
the circumference of pin hole.

Felton and associates have demonstrated that pin placement providing at least 1 mm of
remaining dental thickness from pulp elicits minimal pulp inflammatory response.

But the most practical philosophy is.

In the cervical third of molars and premolars (where most pins are located), pinholes
should be located near the line angle of tooth. The pinhole should be positioned no closer
than 0.5 to 1 mm to DEJ or no closer than 1-1.5 mm to the external surface of tooth.

 As a rule, the pinhole should be parallel to adjacent external surface of tooth.

 Pinholes should be prepared on a flat surface that is perpendicular to the proposed

direction of the pinhole.
 Whenever three or more pinholes are placed, they should be located at different
vertical levels on the tooth if possible.

 The minimize inter pin distance

3 mm for the manikin
5 mm for minimum

Maximal inter pin distance results in lower level of stress in dentin.

 Pinholes on the distal surface of mandibular molars and lingual surface of

maxillary molars should be avoided. (Three is abrupt flaring of roots just
apical to CEJ).


For each of the four sizes of pins, several designs are available.

 Standard

 Self shearing

 Two in one

 Link series

 Link plus

 The link series and link plus are recommended

 TMJ pins are available in

• Stainless steel plated with gold.
• Titanium


Two instruments for insertion of threaded pins are available

o Conventional latch type contra angle handpiece

o TMS hand wrenches.



i) Restoration fracture
ii) Pin restoration separation
iii) Pin fractures
iv) Pin dentin separation → Most likely
v) dentin fracture


o A twist will break if it is stressed laterally or allowed to stop before

being removed from the pinhole.

Sharp twist drills helps eliminate the possibility

o Standard pins may break it turned more than needed to reach the
bottom of pinhole

Pins may break during bonding even

 Removal of broken drill and pin is difficult if not

impossible and usually should not be attempted.


Self threading pins sometimes do not properly engage the dentin because
(i) pin hole was inadvertently prepared too large
(ii) self shearing pin failed to shear
(iii) while shortening, bur is not held perpendicular to pin hole.



• Both are obvious if there is hemorrhage in the pin hole following removal
of drill.

• Usually penetration and perforation can be felt by an abrupt loss of

resistance of drill to hand pressure.


In an asymptomatic tooth, a pulpal penetration is treated as any other small mechanical


Ideal treatment of pulpal treatment is endodontic therapy

* Occlusal to gingival attachment.
* Apical to gingival attachment

Treatment options

Occlusal To Gingival Attachment.

 Pin can be cut flush off the tooth and no further treatment rendered.
 Pin can be cut flush off the tooth and preparation for a cast restoration
extending gingivally beyond the perforation.
 Pin removed external aspect of pin hole enlarged slightly and restored
with amalgam.

Apical To Attachment

(1) reflect the tissue surgically, remove the necessary bone, enlarge the pin hole
slightly, restore with amalgam.

(2) perform a crown lengthening procedures, and place the margin of a cast
restoration gingival to perforation


A slot is a retention groove in dentin whose length is in horizontal plane.

Slot retention may be used in conjunction with pin retention or as an alternative.

• Short clinical crowns

• Cusps that have been reduced 2 – 3 mm for amalgam.

Compared with pin placement more tooth structure is removed in preparing slots.


Less likely to produce

(i) micro fractures
(2) external perforation.

Tooth preparation:

Slot may be continuous or segmented

33 ½ No bur is used.


0.5 mm axial to DEJ

0.5 mm in depth

1 mm or more in length



A form is an initial restoration of a severely involved tooth. The tooth is restored so that
the restorative material will serve in lieu of tooth structure to produce resistance and
retention forms during the development of subsequent cast restorations.

Unlike conventional amalgam restoration an amalgam foundation may not depend

primarily on remaining coronal tooth structure for support. Instead it may rely mainly on
secondary preparation retention features and some what on bonding benefits.

 When preparing a tooth for foundation and / or caries control restoration,

remaining unsupported enamel may be left, except at the gingival, to aid in
forming a matrix for amalgam condensation.

 As a rule foundations are placed in preparation for a full crown, especially in

endodontic treated teeth.


The technique of tooth preparation for or foundation depends on type of retention that is
selected. All techniques have in common the axial location or retention i.e. sufficiently
deep axially so that final preparation for subsequent indirect restoration does not
compromise the resistance and retention form of foundation.

Class I & II amalgam restorations are still common procedures, when used correctly and
in properly selected cases, amalgam restorations have demonstrated the potential to serve
for many years.


Presented by :
Dr. Shivani Arora

 Introduction
 Indications
 Contraindications
 Advantages
 Disadvantages
 Amalgam restorations
 Initial clinical procedure
 Tooth preparation for amalgam restorations
 Conservative class I restoration
 Enameloplasty
 Class I occlusolingual preparation
 Class II amalgam restorations
* for one proximal surface
 Modifications of class II
 Variation of one proximal surface tooth preparation
 Class II restoration involving both proximal surfaces
 Class III amalgam tooth preparation
 Modifications for class III restorations
 Class IV tooth preparation
 Modifications for class IV preparations
 Class V preparations
 Modifications for class V
 Complex amalgam restorations
 Pin retained restorations
 Slot retained amalgam restorations
 Amalgam foundations