Composite bonding is a technique used to improve the appearance of your teeth. The term composite bonding refers to any composite material, either a plastic or resin, which is bonded to an existing tooth. Bonding is ideal for fixing chipped or cracked teeth, hiding discoloration on the tooth’s surface, or reducing the gaps in between teeth. Whatever the specific intent, composite bonding creates more aesthetically pleasing teeth and a more vibrant smile. Unlike veneers or crowns, composite bonding removes little if any of the original tooth.
The Advantages of Bonding
Composite bonding is a quick process, typically lasting less than an hour. Compared to veneers or crowns popular choice because it does not reduce the tooth’s original structure. As well, it is relatively inexpensive. And finally, composite resins are available in many different shades. The shade can be chosen to match the natural color of the original tooth.
The dentist begins by examining and cleaning the tooth to be bonded. Once the tooth is properly prepped, the dentist rubs the tooth with a mild solution that facilitates the bonding of the composite resin to the tooth. The composite resin is then applied in several coats. Each coat is hardened (or set) using a specially designed dentist’s light. Once the dentist has placed an adequate amount of resin on the tooth, the bond is sculpted for the desired shape and texture. Bonding is performed in the dentist’s chair and usually does not require any anesthesia.
After your Bonds are Placed
Proper care of the bonded tooth insures the longest possible duration of the bonding. The bonded teeth, just like the rest of your teeth, should be brushed and flossed daily. This is especially important if you drink coffee, tea, or smoke tobacco; all of which stain composite bonds. Bonds typically do not last as long as veneers or crowns, and may need to be retouched or replaced every five to ten years.