Composite resin becomes an essential material in pediatric dentistry. However, incremental filling of composite resin to minimize the polymerization shrinkage takes time. To reduce the polymerization shrinkage, clinicians and researchers have focused on bulk-filling materials. Bulk-base composite resin is newly introduced as bulk-filling composite resin. The purpose of this study was to evaluate microhardness profile of bulk-base composite resin according to the depth of cure.
A high flow bulk-base material and a low flow bulk-base material were used for experimental group, and a conventional composite resin was used for control group. Each group consist of 20 specimens, 3.5 × 3.5 × 5.0 mm mold was used to make specimen. Specimens were sectioned at the 2 mm and the 3 mm depth with milling machine. Microhardness profile was measured at the surface, 2 mm depth, 3 mm depth, and 4 mm depth.
Microhardness of control group showed statistically significant difference (p < 0.05) according to the polymerization depth. In contrast, experimental group showed no statistically significant difference, except between 0 mm and 4 mm at HFB, 0 mm and 2 mm, 0 mm and 3 mm at MFB.
At the surface and the 2 mm depth, the control group showed higher microhardness than the experimental groups (p < 0.05). However, at the 4 mm depth, the experimental groups showed significantly higher microhardness (p < 0.05).
The results from this study, the bulk-base composite resin showed higher microhardness at the 4 mm and lower microhardness at the surface and the 2 mm depth. Therefore, if bulk-base resin overcomes the mechanical weakness, it could be considered using in pediatric dentistry.