Introduction: The aim of the present study was to evaluate the concurrent effect of root canal preparation size and intra coronal bleaching on dentin microhardness. Methods and Materials: Seventy-two intact anterior teeth were root canal treated and randomly divided into two groups (n=36) according to the size of coronal root canal preparation. The coronal portions of the canals were then enlarged with #2 and 4 Peeso reamers, respectively. Following root canal obturation, teeth were assigned into three groups (n=12) to be treated with bleaching agents containing 35% hydrogen peroxide (HP), sodium perborate (SP) and distilled water as control group. The teeth were stored at 37ºC and 100% humidity for 7 days. Dentinal blocks with 3 mm thickness were obtained from the cervical region and Vickers microhardness number (VHN) were measured for outer and inner dentin in each tooth sample. Data were analyzed using two-way ANOVA and Tukey’s HSD tests. Results: In the outer dentin, the mean VHN in the HP and control groups showed statistically significant differences (P=0.047). The mean VHN of inner dentin for the large preparation size was statistically higher in comparison to the small preparation size (P=0.042). There was a statistically significant difference in the mean VHN of inner dentin with small preparation size between HP and SP groups (P=0.029) and HP and control groups (P=0.021). Conclusion: Intra coronal bleaching with 35% hydrogen peroxide, affects the inner and outer dentin significantly. Excessive removal of cervical dentin, following root canal preparation, alongside the adverse effect of bleaching materials on dentin could result in the tooth fracture.
Keywords: Hardness Test; Hydrogen Peroxide; Sodium Perborate; Tooth Bleaching