Monthly Archives: September 2017

Heroic Dentistry: Compassionate Smile Rescue with ACTIVA BioACTIVE-RESTORATIVE

By Marc A. Johnson DDS

The Heroic Dentistry series celebrates oral health care providers who, like PULPDENT founder Dr. Harold Berk, have made it their mission to save teeth and help patients live in comfort and smile with confidence. 

Sally suffered from years of neglect, trauma, and abuse. Her teeth were a disaster, but her life was turning around, and she wanted to save her smile and regain her self-confidence. (Fig. 1)

Figure 1

Figure 1. Pre-op photo

Traditional treatment options would be full mouth reconstruction (FMR) or full mouth extractions and dentures. FMR would require numerous root canals, build-ups, and porcelain restorations, but with limited finances, this was not possible. I knew Sally during better times, and I wanted to do the right thing for her, so I ruled out extractions. I decided on a direct restorative technique using a laboratory fabricated matrix and ACTIVA BioACTIVE-RESTORATIVE. The material has the flow and adaptability required for the technique along with mineral content and bioactivity to help preserve tooth structure.

Sally started soft tissue therapy while I worked with my lab to create an idealized diagnostic wax-up and refractory putty matrix. (Fig. 2) At her pre-op hygiene visit, she presented with healthy tissue, and upon seeing the smile design wax up, she was quite emotional.

Figure 2

Figure 2. Shows idealized wax-up and refractory putty matrix

Using 3.5x loupes, caries detecting solution, and slow speed excavation, I removed massive
amounts of decay throughout the arch. (Fig. 3) There were pulpal exposures in teeth # 6, 10 and 11, and I immediately performed same-day root canals.

Figure 3

Figure 3. Shows teeth after caries

After etching and bonding, I loaded the putty matrix with ACTIVA BioACTIVE-RESTORATIVE A1 shade, syringed some additional material in and around the prepared teeth, and seated the matrix. To mitigate polymerization stresses, I allowed it to self-cure for a couple of minutes before light curing.

After removing the matrix, I easily removed excess with a scaler. Using serrated polishing strips, I separated each of the teeth proximally, and I made occlusal adjustments to achieve perfect contacts and anterior disclusion in all excursions. The case was completed in one long visit at a comfortable pace (Fig. 4).

Figure 4

Figure 4. Same day finished case immediately post-op

From a time/cost/value perspective, this technique offers remarkable efficiencies and cost savings. Smile design cases can be completed with guides fabricated with minimal reduction and delivered with a smile matrix from the lab using ACTIVA BioACTIVE-RESTORATIVE.


About Dr. Marc Johnson
Dr. Marc Johnson is a cosmetic and restorative dentist in the destination town of Saratoga
Springs, NY.

About PULPDENT® Corporation 
PULPDENT® Corporation is a family-owned dental research, manufacturing company and leader in bioactive dental materials. ACTIVA BioACTIVE™, developed by PULPDENT, is a bioactive restorative material that behaves much like natural teeth and stimulates the formation of apatite (the building blocks of teeth), chemically bonds to teeth and helps protect against decay. PULPDENT celebrates its 70th anniversary this year with continued commitment to product innovation, clinical education and patient-centered care. To stay updated on bioactivity and learn about the Heroic Dentistry Series, which demonstrates ACTIVA’s unprecedented capabilities, visit the Pulpdent blog.

PULPDENT Supports Kids in Need of Dentistry

PULPDENT Corporation is teaming up with Kids in Need of Dentistry (KIND) to offer free preventative dental care to underserved children in Colorado. PULPDENT is donating 1,000 applications of Embrace Pit & Fissure Sealant and 800 applications of Embrace Fluoride Varnish to KIND’s Chopper Topper program for the 2017-2018 school year.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, tooth decay is one of the most common chronic diseases among children in the United States. The number of low-income children with untreated tooth decay (25%) is more than double that of their higher income counterparts (11%).

KIND is actively working to prevent tooth decay among low-income children through its Chopper Topper program. Since 1998 the program has offered oral health education and dental sealant applications in Colorado schools where 50% or more of the students qualify for free and reduced lunch. Dental sealants provide a protective coating that helps prevent tooth decay.   

Oral Health Screening

A hygienist from Kids in Need of Dentistry (KIND) provides an oral health screening at a Denver-area school where over 50% of the students qualify for free or reduced lunch.

For the past three years, KIND has used Embrace Pit & Fissure Sealant from PULPDENT Corporation in the Chopper Topper program. Chopper Topper Hygienist Lisa Valdez says that KIND chose Embrace Sealant because of its unique WetBond™ chemistry, which allows the sealant to “bond to the moist tooth.” This is different from most dental sealants which require the tooth to be completely dried before the sealant can be applied. Because it is moisture friendly, Embrace Sealant application is easy and fast without sacrificing efficacy.

Chopper Topper’s mobile clinic travels to roughly 100 schools in the Greater Denver Area and provided sealants to over 2,730 children in 2016. KIND found that 98% of sealant applications with Embrace were still in good working condition one year after treatment. 

Starting this year, KIND will also provide fluoride varnish treatments to Chopper Topper program participants using Embrace Varnish donated by PULPDENT Corporation.

 Click here to learn more about the Pulpdent Public Health Partner Program.

About PULPDENT® Corporation
PULPDENT® Corporation is a family-owned dental research and manufacturing company and is the leader in bioactive dental materials. ACTIVA BioACTIVE™, developed by PULPDENT, is the first esthetic bioactive restorative material. PULPDENT celebrates its 70th anniversary this year with continued commitment to product innovation, clinical education, and patient-centered care.