Dental bonding: A simple treatment to correct a variety of dental issues
Dental bonding is a relatively straightforward treatment that can help you improve your smile in a short time. With dental bonding you can:
- close spaces between your teeth
- cover flaws
- repair small cracks and chips
- change the colour or shape of your teeth
Dental bonding can also help repair worn down teeth as part of a facial rejuvenation.
How does dental bonding work?
Dental bonding begins with an enamel-like material that is applied, hardened, and sculpted to your teeth. By using materials that match the shade, translucency, and texture of your teeth, gaps between the teeth can be closed, and spots, chips, and discolorations can be eliminated.
Tooth bonding is usually a one-visit procedure. The tooth is prepared by lightly roughening the area to be repaired, which usually doesn’t require anesthetic. The surface of the tooth is then etched with a gel, and a treatment of bonding primers and resins is applied to the tooth.
Dental composites are made to a paste-like consistency so that they can be sculpted to the proper shape and applied. They contain various pigments that are matched to your tooth color, and they come in varying degrees of translucency. This composite is applied to your tooth, sometimes in several layers in order to duplicate the depth of color that occurs in a natural tooth.
A high-intensity curing light is then used to harden it. Due to the nature of the bonding materials, dentists can mimic the color details and translucency of your tooth for a natural, healthy appearance.
How to make your dental bonding treatment last
To make your dental bonding treatment last, follow these guidelines.
- How long bonding lasts depends on many factors that are unique to the individual. Many people will go for ten or fifteen years, and have the bonding look as good as the day it was put in. Others will get staining on the margins of the bonding after one or two years, and will need some touch-up work. If you take care of it well, you shouldn’t have to replace it, but some touch-up work after three to five years is normal.
- Under normal conditions, and if used as recommended, the tooth bonding work should not darken or discolor with age. If improper professional cleaning does not damage the bonding, it should not stain any more than your natural teeth. In most cases, dental bonding is durable enough to withstand the stresses of everyday life.
- If you have extensive bonding work, we recommend frequent professional maintenance. Having your teeth cleaned two to four times per year by a hygienist can help protect your bonding, keep it looking good, and make it last longer. Maintain your bonded teeth by brushing and flossing faithfully. Try to avoid sweets or starchy foods between meals.
- Bonding holds up much better when it is clean. Be careful to choose gentle cleaning tools, as harsh toothpastes will dull the shine on bonding, and make it more susceptible to stain. Hard toothbrushes can also damage bonding.