If you have chipped, fractured, or discolored teeth, cosmetic dental bonding is an easy and affordable way to restore your smile. Bonding is the application of tooth-colored composite resin using a high intensity curing light. It’s a relatively inexpensive way to make minor cosmetic repairs to your teeth.
The tooth-colored composite resin used for bonding can be shaped and polished to match the appearance of your surrounding teeth. Bonding is typically used to restore chipped or discolored teeth, but it can also be used to close gaps between teeth.
Composite resin can also be used as an alternative to amalgam (silver) fillings, or to protect roots that have been exposed due to receded gums.
Your dentist will use a shade chart to select an appropriate composite resin color that will match the rest of your teeth. If you want whiter teeth, you should schedule a bleaching treatment approximately 2 weeks before you undergo cosmetic dental bonding. Whitening agents will not change the color of composite resin.
To prepare the tooth for bonding, your dentist will apply phosphoric acid to the tooth. The acid roughens the surface, which helps with the bonding process. You will not feel any pain during this part of the procedure.
After the surface has been prepared, your dentist will place the composite resin on your tooth. The material can be shaped and sculpted to achieve the desired result. Next, your dentist will use a special light to harden the resin before polishing it to a smooth finish.
The main advantage of cosmetic dental bonding is that it’s an affordable alternative to porcelain veneers and crowns. Plus, some insurance companies will cover the procedure, particularly when it’s used to restore the structure of your tooth.
Cosmetic dental bonding is a quick procedure that can be completed during one office visit. Bonding is a painless procedure that doesn’t require anesthesia. When compared to veneers, it requires very little enamel removal, so you tooth structure stays intact.
The main disadvantage of cosmetic dental bonding is that composite resin can become discolored over time. To minimize staining, you should avoid highly pigmented substances like coffee, tea, and red wine.
If you’re a smoker, cosmetic dental bonding might not be the right option for you, because cigarette smoke can quickly discolor the composite.
Composite resin is also less durable than porcelain veneers and crowns. However, with proper care, cosmetic dental bonding can last 3 to 7 years.
If you’re interested in cosmetic dental bonding, contact your dentist for a consultation. Your dentist can examine your teeth and review your oral health history to determine if cosmetic dental bonding is a good choice for you.
In general, bonding isn’t the best choice for teeth that experience a lot of wear and tear. It cannot be used to repair large areas with major damage.
However, cosmetic dental bonding is a quick and inexpensive way to fix minor imperfections. Your dentist can help you select a treatment option that fits your goals and budget.
Bonded teeth are more fragile than your natural teeth. To prevent chips and fractures, avoid biting into hard items.
Good oral hygiene practices are essential for natural and bonded teeth. You should brush and floss at least twice per day. Schedule routine cleanings and checkups with your dentist to ensure a clean and healthy smile.