Dental bonding is a quick and convenient cosmetic procedure that can be used for a number of aesthetic and structural problems, including fixing chips and breaks, closing gaps, covering areas of discoloration, and reshaping teeth. In fact, many people with a large gap between their two front teeth have it closed with direct bonding. The main difference between using dental bonding and porcelain veneers is that bonding is ideal for addressing smaller areas, while porcelain veneers are more appropriate for larger areas involving multiple teeth.
Dental Bonding Basics
Dental bonding is the direct application of a composite resin material to the tooth, and it requires a great deal of skill and experience to do well. In fact, many dentists don’t offer bonding as a treatment option because they are not comfortable with the shaping and color manipulation skills it requires. Once your tooth has been treated, it will look like your natural teeth, and it will have the requisite strength for normal wear. In this example, you can see that the repair to the chipped tooth closely matches the translucency and color variation found in the rest of the tooth. In addition, the surface of the tooth is subtly shaped to match the original contours.
The Bonding Process
Dr. Root will first prepare the area that is to receive the bonding with a combination of roughening, feathering, and etching. This helps the bonding material adhere to the tooth and makes the repair undetectable.
He will then apply the composite repair material. This is a stiff putty that has to be shaped and colored with precision, so no seam shows. Dr. Root will use several different shades of composite material to match the color variation of your natural teeth, and once the desired shape and color are attained, a special tooth-bonding light will accelerate the hardening of the material. Then the final product will be trimmed and polished. The example in the photos above shows how effective dental bonding can be.
If you would like to find out more about how porcelain veneers can provide a similar aesthetic solution, just click here to read our Porcelain Veneers page.
Then feel free to call our office at any time. We’ll be happy to answer your questions and help you find an appointment time that really works for you. You can also complete our Request an Appointment form online, and we’ll call you during our normal business hours.