Dental Bonding

Dental bonding is one of the simplest & most versatile restorative treatments that we offer. If you have a tooth that is slightly chipped, cracked or decayed, we can use a resin to cover or rebuild the damaged areas.

Woman smiling outsideBonding also functions as a cosmetic treatment to fill gaps, reshape teeth & fix discoloration. In some cases, it is used instead of amalgam fillings or even to protect tooth roots.

The material used in bonding is a putty-like plastic composite resin. Once it has been sculpted onto the teeth, it is then hardened. We can easily customize the color of the bonding resin to match the exact color of your tooth enamel for a seamless look.

Our skilled team can help determine if dental bonding is the best way to restore your smile. Call us today to schedule a consultation.

What Is Dental Bonding?

Dental bonding is a fairly straightforward process compared to other restorative dental treatments. In most cases, bonding procedures can be completed in a single visit. It doesn’t usually require anesthesia & takes about as long as your usual cleaning appointments. The dentist will remove some tooth enamel to roughen the surface where the bonding agent will be placed. After applying a liquid to help the resin stay attached, they will shape the bonding material to be both functional & aesthetically pleasing. Once it is placed & molded, the material is solidified with an ultraviolet light & then polished. The dentist will check to make sure you can comfortably bite down. If any adjustments are needed, they can smooth down or build up the restoration until you are satisfied.

Dr. Nicholas Sowles offers expert dental bonding. Dental bonding is a procedure in which a tooth-colored composite resin (a durable plastic) is applied to restore or improve your smile when you have chipped, fractured, decayed or discolored teeth. With exposure to a concentrated halogen light, this material actually “bonds” to the tooth for a healthy, natural-looking smile.

Bonding is among the easiest & most affordable of all dental procedures. Unlike dental crowns or veneers, bonding usually only requires one visit. The bonding procedure removes less tooth enamel than other dental restorations & generally takes only about 30 to 60 minutes per tooth to complete.

Because the material used in bonding is not as strong as other dental restorations, bonding is usually best suited for small cosmetic changes or for restoration of teeth in areas of low bite pressure (for example, front teeth).

Dr. Sowles will instruct you on how to protect your bonding restoration (for example, by avoiding chewing on pen caps or ice). With proper care, dental bonding usually lasts for several years, but as with most dental restorations they will someday require replacement.

Reasons for getting dental bonding:

• To repair chipped or cracked teeth
• To restore appearance of discolored teeth
• As an aesthetically pleasing alternative to amalgam (silver) fillings
• To close gaps between teeth
• To make teeth look longer or otherwise change their shape
• To protect part of the tooth’s root that has become exposed due to gum recession

Usually only one appointment is required for a dental bonding procedure. First, Dr. Sowles will apply an etching solution to roughen the tooth’s surface so the bonding material can better adhere. Next, a resin that precisely matches the shade of your tooth will be carefully applied & shaped in layers. After each layer is applied, it is hardened with a concentrated halogen light or laser. Finally, Dr. Sowles will carefully trim, shape & polish the bonding material. Unless the bonding is being used to fill a decayed tooth, anesthesia is usually not necessary.

At the office of Dr. Nicholas Sowles we use the latest technology & finest materials to provide dental bonding that offers superior fit, function & aesthetics. We will provide instructions for the care of your new dental restoration. As with natural teeth, proper oral hygiene, good eating habits & regular dental visits will help maintain the life of your new dental bonding.

Feel free to contact us if you have any questions about dental bonding or to schedule a smile consultation with Dr. Sowles.

Limitations of Bonding

Although bonding is an incredibly useful tool for small-scale repair & cosmetic work, it does have limitations.

Composite resin lacks the durability that veneers & crowns have. If you have a majorly damaged tooth or need a longer-lasting solution, bonding may not be your best option. Veneers & crowns are also more resistant to staining.

While bonding can be used for small gaps, it is not a replacement for orthodontic treatment. Crooked teeth & most bite problems can only be resolved by shifting your teeth with braces or other orthodontic appliances.

Bonded teeth do not respond well to whitening, so getting your teeth whitened after a bonding treatment may create a color mismatch between your original teeth and the bonded tooth. It’s a better idea to get a teeth whitening first so we can use a brighter, whiter resin to match your shiny new smile.

Caring For Bonded Teeth

Bonded teeth need to be taken care of just like any of your other teeth or with even greater care. The resin can chip, crack & get stained if not treated properly. Bonding is weaker than your original enamel & cannot be whitened. For this reason, you will need to avoid staining foods & beverages such as coffee for at least 24–48 hours after your procedure. Nail-biters & ice-chewers beware: Bonding will not hold up against your bad habits. Depending on how good your oral hygiene is, your restoration should last between three & ten years before needing a touchup.

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