If poorly spaced teeth or tooth discoloration is keeping you from showing off your smile, you may want to ask one of our cosmetic dentistry professionals about dental bonding. Dental bonding involves the application of a special composite resin to your teeth. This is done to fix a variety of cosmetic dentistry and dental health issues.
Here at Kane & Kerper Dentistry, we have been using dental bonding for years to help our patients have healthier, whiter, and brighter smiles. Though simple, this modern dentistry procedure is effective in correcting a variety of issues. To learn more about dental bonding and what the procedure entails, read through our handy guide below.
What is dental bonding?
Dental bonding is a term used to describe any procedure where we apply a special resin to your teeth to correct dental issues. There are two forms of dental bonding used today: adhesive bonding and direct composite bonding. Adhesive bonding is exactly what it sounds like; dental bonding that is used to affix an appliance such as a crown or veneer to your teeth. Indirect composite bonding the resin itself is applied to repair damage to your tooth. This is usually done in a single visit, though extensive damage or more complicated areas may require additional treatments.
How long will a dental bonding last?
When cared for properly, dental bonding can last from anywhere from three to 10 years. Though they are durable, they are not indestructible, and your dentist will need to check the bonding at your annual visits to ensure that no touch-ups are necessary.
What issues can dental bonding repair?
Dental bonding can be used to repair many different dental health issues, including:
- Tooth discoloration
- Chipped or cracked teeth
- Unusual gaps between teeth
- Misshapen or worn down teeth
- Tooth decay/cavities
- Exposed tooth roots
Dental bonding is often used as an alternative to other, more extensive (and expensive) dental treatments. Because the resin can be mixed an applied right in our office, there is no need for you to wait weeks for a custom restoration to be created in a dental laboratory.
How long will a dental bonding application take?
Because dental bonding is such a common procedure, the process has been greatly refined. In general, the entire process will usually take only 30 to 60 minutes per tooth. However, multiple teeth may require additional appointments.
To begin, we will use a guide that will allow them to match the resin to the natural shade of your teeth, allowing the repaired area to blend right in. Once the shade is chosen, your teeth will then be cleaned and slightly roughened to ensure the resin can bond properly with your tooth. Unlike some other cosmetic dentistry treatments, this will require only a very small amount of your enamel to be removed. Next, a special liquid will be placed on your tooth to help the composite resin stick properly.
Finally, the putty-like resin will be put on your tooth and shaped properly. A special curing light will be used to quickly harden the resin, and it will be further trimmed and shaped. The bonded area will then be polished so that it blends in completely with your natural teeth.
Caring for the dental bonding after application
For the first few days after the bonding has been applied to your tooth, it will be very prone to staining. You will want to avoid habits such as smoking and tobacco use, as well as beverages such as coffee, tea, soda and wine for at least two days following your appointment. As always, it is best to brush your teeth twice a day and floss once per day in addition to continuing your regularly scheduled cleanings and checkups here in our office.
It is important to remember that a dental bonding may not be as strong as your natural tooth. Avoid chewing on non-food items such as ice, popcorn seeds, and fingernails to prevent the bonding from becoming damaged. If damage does occur, or if you notice a slightly strange or “off” feeling when you bite down or chew, contact our office right away so your bonding can be repaired. Failure to do so may not only result in further damage to the bonded area but to the tooth as well.