In this article we will run you through how to get consistently tight contacts with the OVC.

1. Focus on your McDonald Matrix Band placement 

A nicely shaped and sealed matrix band will make all aspects of your OVC procedure more predictable.   


  • A helpful technique is to use wooden wedges to secure the McDonald Matrix Band during placement – this then frees up your hands to be able to tighten the band more easily. 

Tighten Band with Wedges in place

  • Use the autoclavable Hex Stick tightening tool to tighten and adjust your McDonald Matrix Band until it is secure. Either press the toggle against the tooth with a finger to hold it in place, or you may prefer to use a pair of cotton tweezers. The band has convenient ledges to aid in easier grip with tweezers. 
  • At this point you can lightly burnish the band – use your mirror to check that the band is touching at the contact points.
  • Tip: If the band is not touching the opposing teeth at the contact point – you can try loosening the band or making a minor cut with scissors or a bur to the top lingual part of the band – this will allow you to further stretch the band towards the contact points. 


2. Build your inter-proximal “triangle”

After you are happy with your McDonald Matrix Band placement, we recommend you build the interproximal triangle with flowable or composite.

This achieves two things.

  • It secures the McDonald Matrix Band and prevents it from moving.
  • It prevents the matrix band from developing an unnatural anatomical shape as shown below.

Figure 2 below shows the radiograph appearance of the dent caused by wedging too early.

Figure 3 below shows a dent in the matrix as it would look from the dentist’s usual viewpoint if the interproximal triangle is not created prior to wedging.








To make sure this doesn’t happen to you, remember to build the interproximal triangle before applying the separating force.


3. Use a separating ring

For additional separation force it is recommended to place a thin tined separating ring such as the Garrison Original Composi-Tight Ring.


Separating Ring in place



4. A final burnish before placing the OVC

It is important to re-burnish your contact points just before placement of the OVC. With the application of force from the wedges and/or the separating ring, periodontal ligaments allow teeth to move. This is why it is  recommended that you always re-burnish just before placement of the OVC to ensure you get tight contacts.

If you have any further questions, simply email and one of our product specialists would be happy to talk you through the procedure.

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