Not only is dental bonding one of the simplest ways to restore a broken, chipped, or decayed tooth, it is also one of the most cost effective methods available to our patients.
What Is Tooth Bonding?
We are proud of the ways in which dentistry can restore broken or decayed teeth to full beauty and function. One of the easiest and least expensive ways of doing this is with dental bonding.
Bonding uses tooth-colored materials to replace missing tooth structure or hide cosmetically unappealing minor defects in a tooth — chips, discoloration, and even minor spacing irregularities. Bonding materials are called “composite resins” because they contain a mixture of plastic and glass, which adds strength and translucency. The composite actually bonds, or becomes one, with the rest of the tooth.
Composite resins come in a variety of tooth shades for truly lifelike results. When bonding is done with a skilled hand and an artistic eye, it may be impossible to distinguish the bonded tooth from its neighbors. Though bonding will not last as long as a dental veneer, it also does not require the involvement of a dental laboratory and, most often, can be done without drilling of the tooth. It’s a particularly good solution for teens, who often need to wait until their teeth have finished maturing before choosing a more permanent type of dental restoration.
How Does Tooth Bonding Work?
Tooth bonding can typically be done in one visit. We ask that patients allow 30 minutes to one hour from start to finish. We start by removing the plaque and tartar from the tooth to provide a clean, smooth surface. Then, we apply a pore-opening acidic gel, so that the resins can effectively be absorbed by the tissue. After the gel, we rinse it off and apply a thin layer of composite resin onto the surface of the tooth. As mentioned above, the composite resin is matched to the natural coloring of your existing teeth. We use a unique light to cure and harden this first layer of resin, and then we apply another layer and cure again. This layering and curing continues until we achieve the desired thickness. After, we use a small drill to shape the bonding material to match the shape of your existing teeth. Finally, we polish the tooth so it looks and feels exactly like your other teeth.
Each case is different, and Dr. Brumbach considers each patient on a case-by-case basis.
Bonded Teeth Maintenance
As always, we suggest brushing and flossing your bonded teeth every day, along with dental cleanings twice annually. The composite resin can absorb stains exactly the same way your natural teeth can. That said, it’s important to avoid excessive consumption of certain foods and beverages that cause yellowing or staining such as coffee, red wine and tea. Smoking can also cause staining, so we recommend reducing or totally eliminating smoking.
It is important to note that composite teeth can yellow and stain, but they cannot be whitened. Therefore, if you are considering teeth whitening, it’s best to have it done before starting your tooth bonding treatment so we can match the color of your teeth as closely as possible. With good daily maintenance habits, a bonded tooth can last anywhere between three to ten years.
Call our office today to set up an appointment with Dr. Zach Brumbach and his dental professional team if you have any tooth bonding needs.