Failure mechanisms in denture adhesives.
615 - 623
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OBJECTIVE: The mechanical properties of bio adhesives in oral care application are expected to be critical in defining the stability and release of devices such as dentures from the oral tissue. A multiscale experimental mechanical approach is used to evaluate the performance of denture adhesive materials. METHODS: The inherent mechanical behavior of denture fixatives was examined by separating adhesive material from a representative polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) surface using atomic force microscopy (AFM) approaches and compared to macroscopic mechanical testing. RESULTS: Failure of denture adhesive material was found to be critically dependent on the formation of fibrillar structures within the adhesive. Small scale mechanical testing provided evidence for the mechanical properties of the fibrillar structures formed within the adhesive in macroscopic mechanical testing and indicated the importance of the forces required to fail the adhesive at these small length scales in controlling both the maximum forces sustained by the bulk material as well as the ease of separating the adhesive from PMMA surfaces. SIGNIFICANCE: Our results are important in defining the performance of denture fixative materials and their control of adhesive behavior, allowing the potential to tune properties required in the adhesion and removal of dentures.