Graduation Date

Fall 12-20-2019

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Medical Sciences Interdepartmental Area

First Advisor

Dr. Mark Beatty

Second Advisor

Dr. Sundaralingam Premaraj

Third Advisor

Dr. Peter Giannini

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Gregory Oakley


The purpose of this investigation was to evaluate the efficacy of a glass ionomer varnish in preventing demineralization of enamel adjacent to and some distance away from an orthodontic bracket. Forty extracted human molars were divided into four different treatment groups (varnish in distilled water, varnish in acetic acid, enamel in acetic acid, and enamel in distilled water). Two 3 x 3 mm graphite windows were drawn on the tooth, one adjacent to the bracket and one 3 mm away from the first window, indicating the scanning area. Varnish was applied to the teeth in the varnish groups and all the teeth were immersed in their respective solutions. Demineralization level was determined with the use of the Canary System at baseline, 3 days, 7 days, and 14 days. Scanning electron microscope images were obtained at baseline and 14 days. The results of this study suggested that glass ionomer varnish is effective in preventing demineralization of the enamel surface of teeth with orthodontic brackets in patients with a high caries risk. The results of this study also suggested that enamel demineralization occurs independently of the proximity to the bracket margin, and that the Canary System can be a useful instrument in assessing enamel demineralization over time around bracket margins and under resin-modified glass ionomer.