There has been limited published research assessing the range of oral temperature that the dental hard and soft tissues are exposed to. The temperatures that tooth structure and dental restorations encounter affect the performance of dental materials within the oral environment. This study therefore assessed the range of temperatures that a selected group could tolerate when drinking and also assessed the range of temperatures encountered in various intra-oral sites. These temperature fluctuations are for very brief periods of time but have a wide and varied range. Miniature dataloggers allowed for accurate measurements and recording of temperature from selected sites. The range of temperature recorded amongst the individuals tested shows the protection afforded to the dental hard tissues by the soft tissues of the oral cavity. The maximum and minimum mouth temperatures recorded show that hot fluids can raise the intra-oral temperature of the front teeth to around 70°C and the consumption of iced drinks lowers the same teeth to around 0°C. The range of temperature of hot fluids that can be tolerated by a selected group vary, but this does not seem to be the case for cold fluids. The thermistor beads mounted on the buccal surface of the lower front teeth and the palatal of the upper front teeth are exposed to the greatest temperature fluctuations during drinking fluids from a cup. The importance of these temperatures recorded in terms of dental materials testing and the role of material conductivity warrants further investigation. © 2005 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
- Hot and cold fluids
- Intra-oral temperature