Effect of Hydrothermal Aging on the Flexural Strength and Microhardness of Materials Used for Additive or Subtractive Manufacturing of Definitive Restorations

Int J Prosthodont. 2024 Feb 21;37(7):133-141. doi: 10.11607/ijp.8847.


Purpose: To evaluate the flexural strength (FS) and microhardness of various CAD/CAM restorative materials intended for definitive use. The effect of hydrothermal aging on the mechanical properties of these materials was also investigated.

Materials and methods: A total of 210 bar-shaped specimens (17 × 4 × 1.5 mm ± 0.02 mm) were fabricated via either subtractive manufacturing (SM) methods-reinforced composite resin (SM-CR), polymer-infiltrated ceramic network (SM-PICN), fine-structured feldspathic ceramic (SMFC), nanographene-reinforced polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA; SM-GPMMA), PMMAbased resin (SM-PMMA)-or additive manufacturing (AM) methods with urethane acrylate-based resins (AM-UA1 and AM-UA2). Specimens were then divided into two subgroups (nonaged or hydrothermal aging; n = 15). A three-point flexural strength test was performed, and five specimens from the nonaged group were submitted to microhardness testing. Specimens were subjected to 10,000 thermal cycles, and the measurements were repeated.

Results: Regardless of aging, SM-CR had the highest FS (P < .001), followed by SM-GPMMA (P ≤ .042). In nonaged groups, AM-UA2 had a lower FS than all other materials except SM-FC (P = 1.000). In hydrothermal aging groups, AM specimens had lower FS values than other materials, except SM-PMMA. With regard to microhardness, there was no significant difference found between any of the tested materials (P ≥ .945) in the nonaged and hydrothermal aging groups.

Conclusions: The effect of hydrothermal aging on FS varied depending on the type of restorative material. Regardless of aging condition, SM-CR showed the highest FS values, whereas SM-FC had the highest microhardness. Hydrothermal aging had no significant influence on the microhardness of the tested materials.

MeSH terms

  • Composite Resins
  • Computer-Aided Design
  • Dental Materials
  • Flexural Strength*
  • Materials Testing
  • Polymers
  • Polymethyl Methacrylate*
  • Surface Properties


  • Polymethyl Methacrylate
  • Dental Materials
  • Composite Resins
  • Polymers