What is dental bonding (tooth bonding)?
The term dental bonding or “tooth bonding” refers to a range of dental procedures, each of which uses of a type of dental restorative known as “dental composite.”
Dental composite has a number of advantages when restoring the appearance of your tooth, such as its ability to create a strong bond with your natural tooth tissue, both tooth dentin and enamel. It’s also available in a variety of tooth-coloured shades, enabling your dentist to closely match the appearance of your natural tooth structure.
Thanks to these strengths, dental bonding can be used as a cosmetic alternative to amalgam fillings, or to protect a portion of your tooth’s root that has become exposed if your gums have receded.
Bonding is a one-visit procedure requiring no anesthetic. The tooth bonding material is applied to the outside of the tooth creating a finish so similar to your own tooth people will never see the difference.
Although initially less expensive than porcelain veneers, bonding is not as strong and may discolour in several years and will need replacing. It is for this reason that porcelain restorations are seen as more cost effective over time.
What can dental bonding be used for?
Our Cosmetic Dentistry patients can make use of dental bonding to improve the appearance of teeth displaying a number of different imperfections. Firstly, the gaps between teeth (known as “diastema”) can be filled by bonding dental composite to the teeth either side, narrowing the gap or even filling it in completely.
A ‘veneer’ of dental bonding can be placed over the front surface of stained or discoloured teeth to enhance their appearance. Minor to moderate cosmetic imperfections such as chipped, disfigured, or misaligned teeth can be masked or corrected with dental bonding. And white fillings, an attractive alternative to old-fashioned amalgam fillings, can be securely fastened to your teeth thanks to dental bonding.
Your dental bonding procedure
Your Parramatta dentist will begin by using a shade guide to select the colour of composite resin that most closely matches your natural teeth. Your dentist will then slightly roughen or etch the surface of your tooth to provide a more secure surface for the resin composite to bond with. Your tooth is then lightly coated with a conditioning liquid, which helps the bonding material adhere.
When the tooth is prepared, your dentist applies the tooth-coloured, putty-like resin, moulding and smoothing it into the desired shape before hardening it with an ultraviolet light. Once the bonding material has hardened, your dentist further trims and shapes it before polishing the material to match the sheen of the rest of your tooth surface. In just 30 minutes to an hour, your dental bonding procedure is complete.
Am I a candidate for dental bonding?
For most of our cosmetic dentistry patients in Parramatta, correcting minor cosmetic tooth imperfections with dental bonding is completely straightforward. If no tooth decay is present, the corrective process may be as simple as applying the dental composite to your tooth with minimal, or possibly even no, drilling required. If this is the case for you, you probably won’t even need anaesthetic for your dental bonding procedure.
Of course, everyone’s situation and treatment solution will be different. Since there are so many possible variations on this technique, we invite you to contact the Painfree Dentistry team for a personalised consultation to determine if dental bonding could help you.
How long does tooth bonding last?
Placed as a correction for minor cosmetic imperfections, dental bonding will not last indefinitely. You may find that your dental composite will stain over the years just as your natural teeth do, although this darkening process will occur at different rates with different people. Your everyday habits typically have a big effect in this process. For example, if you smoke or regularly consume soft drinks, coffee, or tea, you will tend to have more problems with staining than people who don’t.
Despite this, dental bonding is still a useful technique for cosmetic dentistry, as it needs less of your natural tooth structure to be removed as part of the restorative process, compared to dental crowns or porcelain veneers. Also, if your bonding eventually does become stained, it can usually be simply and easily rejuvenated by buffing off some old resin and replacing it with a new layer of composite.
Can dental bonding close all tooth gaps?
When closing a tooth gap, or diastema, the Painfree Dentistry Parramatta team will take care to sculpt the dental composite so that the area underneath the bonding can still be effectively cleaned with dental floss. In some cases, this means that a compromise must be made where a diastema is not entirely closed, to ensure you can still clean between your teeth properly. This is because, if you cannot adequately clean underneath the bonding, your tooth will be at risk of decay, gum disease, and gum recession.
Are you interested in working with a cosmetic dentist who understands your needs and appreciates your comfort?
So if you are interested in dental bondings in Parramatta, please give us a call on (02) 8999 5128; our practice location is 77 Marion St Harris Park NSW 2150.