Esthetic restorations represent a significant and increasing portion of dental services and income. Closely related to the application of colour science principles in clinical dentistry and optical properties of dental materials, work with colour is a critical component of these procedures.
This article addresses issues related to shade matching such as colour education and training, colour vision, shade-matching conditions, and dental shade guides. Properties of dental materials associated with colour appearance are presented through three categories: colour compatibility, colour stability, and colour interactions.
Recommendations for achieving optimum colour-matching results are suggested. Overall, the application of colour science in clinical dentistry, improvements of dental shade guides and related restorative materials, and further standardisation of colour appearance in dentistry can enable better control of the esthetic outcome and improve esthetic success. New standards might eliminate dental materials exhibiting extreme inconsistencies with corresponding tissues, poor colour stability, or severe batch variations.
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On completion of this module you will understand the application of colour science to clinical dentistry, the characteristics involved in shade-matching restorations and the interaction between the colour coordinates of lightness, chroma, and hue.