In cosmetic dentistry, dental bonding is also known as composite or tooth bonding. This is the process that fixes cosmetic and structural imperfections in the teeth. While dentists call them direct composite veneers, many simply refer to them generically as “dental bonding.”
Dental bonding is used to repair cracked, chipped, and discolored teeth including the replacement of silver fillings. It can also repair misaligned teeth, thereby giving the patient a straighter and more uniform smile.
This material can also be directly applied and sculpted to the surfaces of teeth that are prominently displayed during a smile. (This is termed as a minimally invasive smile makeover.)
The first part is the material selection process. This is where the cosmetic dentist chooses the right tone of the composite resin (white or natural-looking dental bonding materials) to match the patient’s own natural shade of teeth.
The start of the bonding process is when the dentist uses a rubber dam to isolate the tooth (or teeth). This is to prevent moisture interference on the tooth. Depending on the extent of the treatment, there might be a need for anesthetic injections.
Next, the dentist roughens the existing tooth for the resin to adhere properly. He will then apply a gentle phosphoric acid solution on the tooth’s surface (which does not hurt) and removes it after 15 seconds.
The resin is then carefully applied to the tooth, is shaped and smoothed to achieve the desired look.
The formed resin material is then hardened with the aid of a high intensity light. Once it is of correct hardness, the bonded tooth is then buffed and polished to match the appearance and shaped of the surrounding teeth.
Because a dental plan had already been prepared by the dentist after the initial visit, the direct composite bonding procedure usually is completed in one dental visit. Of course, this will still depend on the extent of the needed tooth repair.
Even if the treatment goes over for two or more visits, the results can be quite pleasing.
There are several benefits for patients in the tooth bonding process. For starters, it is quick, affordable, virtually painless, and the result can be long lasting.
Dental bonding is a good alternative to the more extensive (and expensive) treatment with porcelain veneers, bridges and crowns.
The composite resin used in the cosmetic bonding process is very flexible. It expands and contracts with the natural tooth, thereby preventing cracks and tooth loss.
Cosmetic dentistry financing has always been a primary concern with many patients. For tooth bonding, the cost varies according to the number of teeth repaired. Sometimes, the cost varies depending on the areas where the dental procedure is performed.
Insurance carriers usually cover tooth bonding, especially if it is done for structural reasons. Likewise, many cosmetic dentists have financing plans available for their patients.
Nowadays, dental procedures like tooth bonding are already affordable to patients of all financial backgrounds. The way that dental bonding work wonders on your teeth (alignment, whitening, and overall improvement of appearance) is a good enough reason to pay for the cosmetic dentistry cost.