The Importance of Testing Your Curing Light
Frequently testing curing lights should be a standard best practice in all dental offices. Unfortunately, there are many dentists who simply rely on the output that is listed in the specifications provided by the manufacturer which give them false confidence in a curing light that may not be performing at the level it should be.
1 in 5 curing lights significantly differ from what the manufacturer states1. Standard (ISO) lights should be within +/- 20% of stated output. For example, if the manufacturer says the output should be 1,000 mW/cm, then the only acceptable range is from 800-1,200 mW/cm. 1 in 4 curing lights are outside of that 20% range1.
Underperforming curing lights can lead to negative outcomes that hurt both you and your patient. Resulting problems can include material discoloring, debonding from the tooth structure, microleakage, higher risk of fractures leading to cases of postoperative sensitivity and secondary decay.2,3
What should you be doing to help avoid these poor outcomes and ensure your curing light is properly functioning? Here’s a checklist that every dentist should keep handy.