Cosmetic Dental Bonding

The term bonding is used in dentistry to describe permanently attaching dental materials to your teeth using dental adhesives and a high intensity curing light. Cosmetic dental bonding is a painless way to make minor repairs or changes to your teeth. It uses tooth-coloured material, called composite resin. It is directly applied and sculpted to the surfaces of teeth that show most prominently when you smile, for minimally invasive smile makeovers. Composite bonding usually is an ideal and less expensive solution for people with chips, gaps between the teeth, staining and discolouration, slight crookedness and misshapen teeth.

Because direct composite bonding involves the precise placement of restorative material by the dentist, the procedure is usually completed in one dental visit. More complicated or extensive treatments may require additional visits. However, there is usually no need for temporaries or waiting days or weeks for laboratory restorations. Although direct composite bonding typically requires minimal preparations, no mould-taking and no temporaries, the artistic skill and precision of your dentist will determine the exact manner in which your bonding is created. For example, sometimes we use putty stents based on an impression of your teeth and a model of your desired smile to guide us when placing the composite resin. This helps ensure satisfactory results.

To determine whether your dental problems can be solved with direct composite bonding, your dentist first will conduct a thorough examination and evaluation of your teeth and gums. During your consultation, your dentist will discuss the clinical and cosmetic problems that direct composite bonding can resolve, such as cavities, chips, cracks, fractures, gaps and spaces between teeth, and tooth discolouration. However, if you have teeth that are extensively damaged or your dentist feels that other dental issues may affect the success and longevity of direct bonding treatments, other options may be presented to you, such as crowns or veneers. Pre-treatment teeth whitening may be suggested in order to better match the colour of the composite restoration to your natural teeth.

In instances where direct composite bonding materials will be used to lengthen or change the shape of your teeth and alter the appearance of your smile, your dentist may take impressions of your teeth before treatment to make a preview model of what your new smile could look like. If you agree with the proposed changes, your dentist may then use this model as a guide or template when placing the direct composite on your teeth.

Direct composite bonding restorations can provide you with a healthy and beautiful smile for many years, but it is important to follow your dentist’s recommendations for proper oral hygiene, as well as avoid habits that could damage your restorations.

Brush your teeth at least twice a day, floss once a day and schedule regular visits to your dentist and hygienist for routine examinations and cleanings.

Refrain from habits such as biting your finger nails and chewing on pens, ice cubes or other hard objects, since direct composite bonding materials are prone to chipping. Your dentist will also suggest you return to the dental practice if you notice any sharp edges on the bonded tooth or teeth, or if it feels different when you bite down.

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