Aim: The in vitro study observed the effects of high temperatures and time on teeth and restorative materials and also grossly analyzed the degree of change in color, shape, and structure of teeth and restorative material after incineration. Materials and methods: A total of 72 extracted teeth, unrestored or restored (class I cavities) with amalgam, two composites, compomer, glass ionomer cement (GIC), metal crown, and metal-ceramic crowns were divided into eight groups (n = 3) of nine teeth each, and the ninth group was blocks of heat cure acrylic. The effect of incineration at 500°C (15 minutes, 30 minutes) and 1000°C (30 minutes) was examined for macroscopic and stereomicroscopic changes. Results: At 1000°C, all materials except amalgam, metal crowns, and metal-ceramic crowns were incinerated. At 500°C, it was possible to identify the specimens with either scorched (burnt) [500°C (15 minutes)] or charred [500°C (30 minutes)] appearance. The scorched specimens had brownish to black discoloration, whereas, in the charred specimens, the discoloration was complete to give a black appearance. Conclusion: Forensic studies to identify the victims are possible using metal crowns, metal ceramics, and amalgam restorations even at 1000°C, whereas other materials can be used to identify the victim up to 500°C (30 minutes). Clinical significance: Studying the effect of elevated temperature on teeth and restorations would help odontologists compare the postmortem results of burned, charred, or incinerated teeth or restorations with the antemortem clinical history of the victims of mass disasters (fires), accidents, and criminal investigations. Valuable insights from research on the effect of incineration on tooth and dental materials can greatly aid forensic analysis for the identification of humans.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)722-726
Number of pages5
JournalWorld Journal of Dentistry
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 08-2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Dentistry


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