Image courtesy of 3M
2012 De Cpea3 P01

Pearls for Your Practice: Scotchbond Universal Plus adhesive by 3M

Dec. 1, 2020
Joshua Austin, DDS, MAGD, reviews 3M’s next generation adhesive, Scotchbond Universal Plus, which takes what he loves about the original and makes it even better.

I usually love it when something great gets even better. I loved it when Oreos added a peanut butter flavor. I loved it when Uber added Uber Eats. I loved it when my Tesla added Ludicrous Mode. I did not love it when the Golden State Warriors added Kevin Durant, but that’s just San Antonio Spurs fan sour grapes. I love when companies improve on things that are already great and 3M did just that with Scotchbond Universal Plus.

Scotchbond Universal Plus is the next generation of Scotchbond Universal. Scotchbond Universal was already one of the top adhesives on the market. The new version has many of the same great characteristics of the original. It is a universal bonding agent, making it compatible with any etch method you prefer (total etch, self etch, selective etch). I am a selective etch guy, so that’s the way I use this adhesive 95% of the time.

It will also bond with almost any dental material—enamel, dentin, resin, porcelain, or metal. Scotchbond Universal Plus can do it all. With its thin film thickness, it can easily be used with indirect restorations such as inlays, onlays, crowns, and veneers. So, if Scotchbond Universal Plus has all the same great features as the original Scotchbond Universal, what is so different about it?

Three features set it apart from the original. Firstly Scotchbond Universal Plus is the first radiopaque universal bonding agent. That is a huge advantage in our clinical decision-making. We have all sat and stared at a bitewing trying to determine if that dark shadow under a composite is decay or bonding agent. The problem is we never know until we drill into it to find out.

With Scotchbond Universal Plus, we don’t have to worry about that anymore. If by chance we leave a pool of bonding agent at the bottom of a prep, that pool will be radiopaque. I love having that assurance! It makes my clinical decision-making much easier.

The second difference between the original and Scotchbond Universal Plus is the new bisphenol A (BPA)-free formulation. Patients are asking me more and more about BPA in their restorative materials. Being able to honestly tell them that the adhesive I use is BPA-free is a nice feature.

The third difference is the addition of ingredients that will enhance bonds to a couple of different materials. One such material is glass ceramics as Scotchbond Universal Plus includes optimized silanes in the bottle! That means no need for additional materials to bond in glass ceramics. That simplifies my protocols and makes appointments go smoother. In addition to optimized silanes, Scotchbond Universal Plus also includes a dual cure accelerator, making curing in deep areas a breeze and increasing its bond strength to dual cure materials such as core buildups.

These added features make switching over a no-brainer in my opinion. Anything that simplifies my restorative workflows is a huge win in my practice. Taking a material that is already great and making it greater is something I want to be a part of. Triple into the right field corner for Scotchbond Universal Plus!

Hungry for more Pearls? Read all Dr. Austin's reviews here. 

Joshua Austin, DDS, FAGD, FACD, writes the Pearls for Your Practice column in Dental Economics. After graduating from the University of Texas Health Science Center Dental School, Dr. Austin associated for several years. In October of 2009, he opened a solo general practice in a suburban area of San Antonio, Texas. Dr. Austin is involved in all levels of organized dentistry and can be reached at [email protected].

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