A variety of natural waxes and resins have been used in dentistry for specific and well defined applications

. Waxes are thermoplastic materials which are solids at room temperature but melt without decomposition to form mobile liquids. They consist of two or more components which may be natural or synthetic waxes, resins, oils and pigments. DEFINITION [GPT 8] One of several esters of fatty acids with higher alcohols, usually monohydric alcohols. PROPERTIES OF WAXES Melting range Co efficient of thermal expansion Transition temperature Mechanical properties Flow Residual stress MELTING RANGE Waxes have a melting range rather than a melting point. Example : paraffin 44 – 620C

carnauba 50 – 900C Significance:

Mixing of waxes can change their melting range. CO EFFICIENT OF THERMAL EXPANSION Waxes expand when there is increase in temperature and contract when there is decrease in temp. Dental waxes have the greatest co-efficient of thermal expansion than any other restorative materials in dentistry. Eg: CET of type 1 wax is[ between 220C and37.50C] is 323×10 _6/0C Significance: The CET of inlay waxes are high enough that temperature changes in wax pattern after the establishment of critical dimensional relationships may serve as a major contributing factor in inaccuracy of finished restoration. TRANSITION TEMPERATURE On heating the thermal expansion rate increases abruptly above a certain temperature Orthorhombic crystal lattice This change is stable and progressive Significance: Waxes which need to be rigid should have a transition temp above 370C eg: inlay wax. FLOW Is the slippage of wax molecules over each other. Measure of flow is the measure of the degree of plastic deformation of material at a given temperature.

Hexagonal form

Depends on The temperature of waxes Composition of wax Force causing deformation Length of time force is applied Significance: A greater flow of above 500C or above oral temp helps to record details. Negligible flow at 370C reduces distortion due to internal stresses. RESIDUAL STRESSES Stress remaining in wax as a result of manipulation May be due to Occluded air Processing Carving Removal from mold During storage Elastic memory of wax MECHANICAL PROPERTIES Compressive strength , proportional limit, elastic modulus of waxes are low. These properties strongly depends on the temperature

As the temp decreases mech properties improve COMPONENTS Dental waxes contain Natural waxes Synthetic waxes Additives NATURAL WAXES: 1. Minerals: Microcrystalline Paraffin Barnsdahl Ozokerite Ceresin Montan 2. Plants: Carnauba wax Ouricury wax Candelia wax Japan wax


Cocoa butter 3. Insect: Bee’s wax 4. Animal:: Spermaceti wax SYNTHETIC WAXES : Acra wax C Epolene Aerosol OT Albacer Castor wax Dura wax Flexo wax ADDITIVES Fats Stearic acid Glyceryl tristearate Oils Turpentine


Color Natural resins Copal Dammar Sandarac Mastic Shellac Kauri Synthetic resins Elvax Polyethylene Polystyrene CHEMICAL NATURE Two principle groups of organic compounds : Hydrocarbons : saturated alkanes Esters : myricyl palmitate [bees wax]

Some waxes in addition contains free alcohol and acids CLASSIFICATION BASED ON USE


PATTERN WAXES : Inlay casting wax RPD Casting wax Base plate wax PROCESSING WAXES : Boxing wax Utility wax Sticky wax IMPRESSION WAXES Corrective impression wax Bite registration wax PATTERN WAXES Inlay wax It is a type of pattern wax. It is used to make patterns for metallic restorations. Ideal requirements Inlay wax should be uniformly softened. There should be no irregularities. It should have good color contrast. This helps to identify the margin between the die and the wax pattern at the finish line. It should not flake or chip off during carving.

It should be smoothly contoured, otherwise it will produce a rough surface on the casting. It should be completely eliminated during burnout with no residue. It should be dimensionally stable from the time of fabrication till the burnout. When used intraorally it should have good flow at the oral temperature, but once removed and cooled it should become rigid. The flow should be more than 70 % at 450C and less than 1 % at 370C Classification Classification I (ADA Sp. No. 4) Type I: Medium wax employed in direct technique. I Type II: Soft wax used for indirect technique for inlays and crowns. Available as: Blue, green or purple sticks of 7.5 cm length and 6 mm diameter. Also available as small pellets and cones. Commercial names: Harvard, Kerr, Peck. Plastodent C, Jelenko green wax, S-U Dental blue wax, S-U dental green wax. GC blue, Shofu color Composition i. Paraffin wax (40-60%) Main ingredient. It determines the melting point.


Main disadvantage is-it flakes when trimmed. It does not give a smooth surface, so to modify it other waxes are added. ii. Ceresin (10%) is added to partially replace paraffin. Reduces flakiness. Makes it easy to contour. iii. Gum Dammar (1%) or Dammar resin It is a natural derivative from pine trees. Increases the finish and gives a smooth surface. Increases resistance to cracking and flaking making it harder. iv. Carnauba wax (25%) It has a high melting point. It increases the hardness. It decreases the flow at mouth temperature. It gives glossiness to the surface. v. Candellila wax It can be used instead of carnauba wax. It has a lower melting temperature than carnauba wax. It is not as hard as carnauba wax. Synthetic waxes


In modern inlay waxes, carnauba wax is often replaced partly by certain synthetic waxes. They have high melting point. This allows greater paraffin content of the wax which improves working characteristics. Properties of inlay wax 1. Flow Maximum flow Type I waxes is 1 % at 370C Type II waxes is 1 % at 300C Maximum flow-type I and II 75 to 90 % at 450C Significance: Type I wax flows well at oral temperature and so can be used for direct pattern technique. Type ii is more rigid and needs higher temperature to soften and so used for indirect technique. The wax should be softened at 450C and placed into the prepared cavity. Only at this temperature it has the highest flow. This allows accurate detail recording. 2. Thermal properties Coefficient of thermal expansion: Inlay wax has the largest CTE compared to any other material used in restorative dentistry.

It has a linear expansion of 0.7% Thermal conductivity: The thermal conductivity of waxes is low. It is difficult to heat wax uniformly. There can be contraction during cooling ii. Significance: The pattern can get distorted due to uneven heating and cooling. This effect is seen during direct technique when there is a difference between oral temperature and room temperature. The pattern should not be cooled under pressure as this increases the coefficient of thermal expansion. This can cause distortion. Wax distortion: When waxes are heated they soften but stresses are induced. On cooling these stresses are released which causes distortion. Distortion of the wax can occur due to the following reasons: Improper heating of wax. The wax may not be heated uniformly. When wax is not held under uniform pressure during cooling. When additional wax is added to an existing layer of wax, there is difference in temperature between layers. Stresses can be incorporated during carving the pattern.

Wax contracts on cooling to room temperature and this can cause distortion. Gas bubbles can get incorporated during fabrication. The escape of these gases can lead to distortion. Constantly changing the manipulation temperature by reheating and cooling (pooling of wax) the pattern can induce stresses. Prevention Some of the factors causing distortion are inherent to the property of waxes and cannot be completely eliminated. It can be minimized by the operator. Minimal carving and avoiding reheating the layers of wax. Uniform temperature of wax by uniform heating. The stresses are released over a period of time, so by investing the pattern immediately distortion can be minimized. Heating instruments for carving uniformly. A wax bath can be used. The wax is usually uniformly melted at the ideal temperature and the die is dipped into the wax bath. If necessary, it should be stored in a fridge. Uses: Patterns for inlays, crowns and bridges is first made in wax, and then converted into metal or ceramic by casting. Effect of physical properties of waxes on investments and casting shrinkage [JPD1996].


The flow charac, bending strength, and softening temp of 6 industrial and 7 dental waxes were studied. A direct relation between flow of wax and casting shrinkage was found. It was found that as flow increased casting shrinkage decreased. If a wax with a low flow and high strength is used, a larger casting ring should be considered. A study on heating and cooling of crown wax patterns [JPD 1994]. 6 Different waxes were studied. Conclusion: increase in flow by increase in temp was shown in the range of 370C -470C for majority of the materials Rate of expansion varies during increase in temp ie. Transition temp Most mat show flow by 61%-82% at 470C -520C Manipulation of Inlay Wax i. Direct Technique It is called so because the prepared cavity is recorded directly. The pattern is then invested. The inlay wax is manipulated over an open flame. The stick should be rotated over the flame for uniform heating. It is then placed into the cavity under finger pressure. It should be allowed to cool gradually to mouth temperature. The pattern should be handled to the minimum to prevent temperature changes.

It is then invested. The main advantage of this technique is that it saves time because there is no need to prepare a die. ii. Indirect Technique Pulled pattern technique A die is prepared from the impression. The die is coated with a die spacer to provide space for luting agent. A die lubricant is applied for easy removal of the pattern. The die is dipped into a wax bath with melted inlay wax (dipping method). The pattern is made by adding additional layer of waxes (incremental wax addition technique) Finally wax pattern is carved finished and polished with silk cloth. Precautions Should not be softened with warm water as solvents leach out and splattering can occur due to presence of water. Invest all wax patterns as soon as possible to avoid distortion. Prolonged heating should be avoided as it causes the wax to evaporate. Accuracy of wax, auto polymerized, and light-polymerized resin pattern materials. When measured on intra- and extra coronal master dies, the light polymerized, diacrylate resins had equal or better marginal fit, compared with

wax or auto polymerized acrylic resin, and were less affected by placement technique and storage. Casting wax It is a type of pattern wax. Classification (According to FDI Specification No. 140) i. Class A 28 gauge, pink Flow of about 10 % at 350C. Easily adaptable at 40 to 450C. ii. Class B 30 gauge, green Minimum flow of 60 % at 380C. Adapts well to the surface. not brittle on cooling. iii. Class C readymade shapes, blue Will burnout at 5000C leaving no carbon residue Supplied As Sheets 0.40 and 0.32 mm thickness. Readymade shapes Round (10 cm), half round and half pear shaped rods. Mesh work. Readymade sheets or in bulk.

Shaped like clasps. Commercial name :metrodent casting wax, SPI wax Composition Paraffin wax Ceresin Beeswax Resins Other waxes Base Plate Wax It is a type of pattern wax used mainly in preparing wax patterns for prosthesis. Classification (ADA Sp. No. 24) Type I-Soft: For building veneers. Type II-Medium: To use intraorally (in normal climates not in too warm climates). Type III-Hard: For use in tropical climates Supplied as: Sheets of pink or red color. Composition: Generally consist of hydrocarbon waxes-70 to 80%.

Paraffin or ceresin 8% Beeswax 12.0%. Carnauba 2.5%. Natural or synthetic resins 3.0% Microcrystalline 2.5 % Other coloring agents. Requirements Linear expansion not greater than 0.8% Should not flake during carving. Softened sheets should cohere at 230C. Smooth finish on flaming. Coloring should not stick to the plaster surface during flasking. Uses: These waxes are used for the following purposes Used in making occlusal rims. These are used to record jaw relations for complete denture patients. They can be used to fabricate patterns for removable partial denture. To make patterns for prostheses which are processed in acrylic resins. Processing Waxes


Processing waxes are those waxes used in the laboratory procedures for the construction of restorations and appliances, e.g. boxing wax, beading wax, utility wax and sticky wax. Boxing Wax and Beading Wax Use: Beading wax is adapted around the impression borders to create the land area of the cast. Boxing wax is used to build up vertical walls around the impression in order to pour the gypsum product to make a cast base. Supplied as: Boxing wax as sheets, beading wax as strips. Composition Boxing wax may contain. Low melting hydrocarbon waxes. Beeswax. Properties Smooth and glossy on manipulation over a flame. Seals easily. Pliable at 210C. Does not distort at 350C. Commercial name : metro boxing in wax, cavex , kerr, metro ribbon wax Uses


Beading and boxing procedure: It is a laboratory procedure after final impression making for complete denture patients. The beading wax is usually a thin rope of wax which is pliable at room temperature. This wax is adapted and fused to the margins of the impression. Onto the beaded margins the boxing wax is adapted and the impression is poured. The final cast should have 2 to 4 mm of land area around the sulcus which will be formed by the beading wax. The cast should have a height of about 10 to 15 mm in the deepest portion. This height of the cast is formed by the boxing wax. Advantages Preserves the anatomic contours. Gives a definite thickness to the borders. It gives a definite form and thickness to the base. Conserves laboratory material. Utility Wax Composition Beeswax. Petrolatum. Resins.

Supplied as: It is available in the form of sticks and sheets. Orange or dark red in color. In orthodontics, periphery wax is white in color. Properties: Flow at 37.5 0C- min 65 % and max 80% . Pliable and tacky at 21240C. Uses It can be used to alter the stock tray extensions. The following alterations can be made Height of the tray can be increased The posterior extensions can be increased. The palatal vault depth can be increased. Sticky Wax Composition Yellow beeswax Rosin Natural resins such as gum dammar. Supplied as: Yellow colored sticks. Properties Sticky when melted, with a max 5 %flow at 300C and 90 % at 430C. It adheres closely to the surfaces when applied to it. If movement occurs the wax tends to fracture than distort.

The pieces can be easily joined in a proper relationship. At room temperature the wax is brittle and breaks easily. Uses It is used to align fractured parts of acrylic dentures. It is used to align fixed partial denture units before soldering. It is used to seal a plaster splint to the stone cast during porcelain firing. Impression waxes Wax in combination with resins of low melting point can be used in corrective impression technique in partial and complete denture prosthesis. The peculiarity of impression wax is that they flow at mouth temperature. Availability : sheets or cakes Commercial names Korecta wax, Kerr's impression wax, Iowa wax, Aluwax Korecta waxes are available in four grades. The physical properties vary to make each more capable of serving a particular function THE NO.1 WAX * * * Colour is tissue pink Very hard with practically no flow at mouth temperature Principal use is to support and extension of the impression wax when there is need to carry it beyond the border of the temporary base.


It congeals very quickly. Also it shows very little shrinkage. Hence used for final wax-up of porcelain or resin teeth after they have been adjusted to the desired position.


It is also be used as a support to reposition the extension partial denture for a short period of wear before making the rebase impression.

THE No.2 WAX Colour is yellow Has slight flow at body temperature Its ability to adapt very slowly to the ridge structures makes its useful as a temporary lining of a base which should be worn for a short time. THE No.2 wax Colour is yellow Has slight flow at body temperature Its ability to adapt very slowly to the ridge structures makes its useful as a temporary lining of a base which should be worn for a short time. NO. III WAX Colour is red Flow greater than No. II wax but less than impression wax Used to correct minor areas of discrepancy placing the impression wax. NO. IV WAX Colour is orange

High rate of flow at body temperature Used for making correctable impression Must always be carried by a temporary base when it is recording the supporting contour of the sub basal structures. Must have sufficient flow to allow the release of any excess waxes in a reasonable length of appointment time. REQUISITIES A series of waxes is needed, each adapted to a special use. Each wax should be distinctly coloured for easy and positive identification. Adhesiveness is necessary in order to secure proper binding of successive layers. In this series, one wax should be sufficiently hard and strong to give adequate reinforcement of an extended periphery. The wax surface should become glossy when it is receiving tissue support Should give a smooth surface with fine details accurately recorded. Possess sufficient flow at mouth temperature so that any excess can escape to the periphery, thus preventing any surface impingement beneath the extension base. MELTING IMPRESSION WAXES To avoid over heating, melting of the wax should be done in a double boiler. Where additions are needed, these waxes can be added most smoothly if they are kept at about 200-2100F. Double boiler

Application of impression waxes The brush used should be medium stiff bristles about 3/8 inch in length. A separate brush should be used for each kind of wax needed in a given impression. Taking impression It records the mucous membrane and underlying tissues in a functional state. It is loaded on the tissue surface of a cast removable partial denture frame work or complete denture. It records the tissue details under masticatory load. The cast should be poured immediately as distortion may occur. Impression is properly completed All the contacting surface is glossy The roll or turn at the wax periphery is continuous. 3. The appliance has been kept under continuous seating pressure for along enough period (8-12min.) to let any excess wax escape to the periphery. 4. 5. No areas of base showing through impression The periphery has been thickened to record the bulk which the cul-de-sac structures can accommodate. The impression has been removed from mouth without having the periphery marred or distorted by coming in contact with tongue, cheek or anything which could deform it. IOWA WAX


The Iowa wax was developed for use in recording the functional or supporting form of an edentulous ridge. It may be used either as a secondary impression material or as an impression material for relining the finished partial denture to obtain support from the underlying tissues. Mouth temperature waxes vary in their working characteristics. Among these are the Jelenko Adaptol impression material and the stalite impression material. Both of these have a more resinous base. They are designed primarily for impression techniques that attempt to record the tissues under an occlusal load. Iowa wax will not distort after removal from the mouth at ordinary room temperatures. But the more resinous waxes must be stored at much lower temperatures to avoid flow when they are out of mouth. Resinous bases are not ordinarily used in partial denture impression techniques, except for secondary impressions. Uses Ideal for atrophic or knife edge residual ridge. Mainly used for functional impression for removable partial dentures in free end saddle situations. For recording posterior palatal seal region in complete denture fabrication.


Used as a secondary impression material or as an impression material for relining the finished partial denture to obtain support from the underlying tissues. Also used to correct borders of impression made from other rigid material. Advantages Easy to manipulate. Given sufficient time they allow a rebound of tissues that have been forcibly displaced. They record tissues without over displacement and ensure uniformity of support for the partial denture framework.. They also have the advantage of being correctable. Disadvantages Can be easily distorted Not dimensionally stable Time required for manipulation Complex armamentarium. Bite registration wax: is used to articulate certain models of opposing quadrants. Bite registrations are also made from 28 gauge casting wax sheets or hard base plate wax. Almore bite registration wax Aluwax bite wafers

From the early use of bees wax for impression to current techniques such as casting or interocclusal records, waxes are among the most popular and useful of dental materials. They are economical, suited for many purposes. Proper knowledge of certain critical characteristics- such as effect of heating on flow, thermal expansion and distortion – will enable easy effective and efficient handling of the material.