Bonding is a composite, tooth-colored, resin filling material used that can be used in several applications in dentistry. It may be recommended to you for any of the following reasons:
- To repair decayed teeth (composite resins are used to fill cavities)
- To repair chipped or cracked teeth
- To improve the appearance of discolored teeth
- To close minor spaces between teeth
- To change the shape of teeth
- As a cosmetic alternative to amalgam fillings
- To protect a portion of the tooth's root that has been exposed when gums recede
The process for bonding teeth varies depending on the desired outcome, but in general it requires the dentist to roughen the surface of the tooth with a dental bur to create an adequate surface texture for the bonding material. This may be done with or without anesthetic, depending on the proximity to the nerve of the tooth and whether or not decay is present in the tooth. Once the preparation is completed, the dentist then applies the tooth-colored composite, which is similar to a putty and can be shaped and sculpted. A high intensity light is then used to harden the material to a completely set state.
This allows for immediate function once the procedure is complete! The tooth is then sculpted, shaped and polished to enhance your smile. Bonding can used to correct a variety of minor dental conditions and can sometimes be a cost-effective alternative to more permanent aesthetic treatment, such as crowns or veneers. If you have minor aesthetic problems that you would like to correct, we would be more than happy to discuss this as an option for you!