Cosmetic bonding is the process of placing white fillings on to your existing teeth. Once sculpted into shape, hardened and then polished, the finished result is incredibly realistic and virtually impossible to differentiate from your other teeth.
Using materials with similar characteristics to enamel and dentine we can repair chipped or broken teeth, close gaps or cover unsightly marks with little or no preparation work. It’s also possible to change the shape and size of your teeth, giving you the smile you want at a fraction of the cost of some other, more invasive treatments.
If you want your old silver fillings replacing for beautiful, life-like white fillings, this can also be achieved with cosmetic bonding.
This lady was unhappy with the gap between her front teeth. We used a white filling material, bonded to the teeth, to create a more pleasing shape, whilst closing the gap. This type of treatment is very popular as it does not damage the underlying teeth at all and is easily modified or reversed if a patient's wishes.
What's the Procedure for Having a Tooth Bonded?
Preparation. Little advance preparation is needed for dental bonding. Anesthesia is often not necessary unless the bonding is being used to fill a decayed tooth. Your dentist will use a shade guide to select a composite resin color that will closely match the color of your tooth.
Next, the surface of the tooth will be roughened and a conditioning liquid applied. These procedures help the bonding material adhere to the tooth. The tooth-colored, putty-like resin is then applied, molded, and smoothed to the desired shape. An ultraviolet light or laser is then used to harden the material. After the material is hardened, your dentist will further trim and shape it, and polish it to match the sheen of the rest of the tooth surface.
How long will the treatment take?
Dental bonding takes around 30 minutes toan hour per tooth to complete.
What Are the Advantages and Disadvantages of Dental Bonding?
One advantage comes from the ease and affordability of the procedure. Unlike veneers and crowns, which are customized tooth coverings that must be manufactured in a lab, bonding usually can be done in one visit unless several teeth are involved. Another advantage, compared with veneers and crowns, is that the least amount of tooth enamel is removed. Also, unless dental bonding is being performed to fill a cavity, anesthesia is usually not required making this a largely pain-free treatment.
There are some disadvantages however. Although the material used in bonding is somewhat stain resistant, it does not resist stains as well as crowns. Another disadvantage is that the bonding materials do not last as long nor are as strong as other restorative procedures, such as crowns, veneers, or fillings and in some cases they can chip and break off the tooth completely.
Do Bonded Teeth Require Special Care?
Bonded teeth do not require any special care. Simply follow good oral hygiene practices; brush your teeth twice a day, floss at least once a day, rinse with mouthwash once or twice a day and of course, pop into The Old Church Dental for regular check-ups and cleanings.
Because bonding material can chip, it is important to avoid such habits as biting fingernails; chewing on non-food items, or using your bonded teeth to open things!
How Long Does Bonding Material Last?
The lifespan of the bonding materials depends on how much bonding was done and your oral habits. Typically, however, the bonding lasts from 3 to as many as 10 years before needing to be repaired or replaced.