Your tooth enamel is one of the strongest parts of your body. But, think about everything you put your smile through over the course of a day – then add that up over time. Chewing, biting, using our teeth as tools (although we highly recommend not doing that!) – your teeth take some wear and tear. And while our enamel is incredibly strong, our teeth can chip or crack. Tooth bonding is a procedure that can help repair a chipped tooth and prevent further damage from setting in.
What is tooth bonding?
Bonding is a procedure during which a tooth colored resin is applied to the tooth to restore tooth shape. We can use bonding for several reasons, including:
- Repairing decayed teeth
- Repairing chipped or broken teeth
- Improving the cosmetic appearance of teeth
- Closing spaces between teeth
- Changing the shape or length of teeth
What is the process for bonding teeth?
Bonding is a quick, easy and painless procedure. We start by selecting a shade for your bond resin that will most closely match your natural teeth. The we roughen the surface of the tooth just a bit and apply a special conditioning liquid. This ensures that the resin will adhere properly. Then, we apply the resin and mold and smooth it until it reaches the desired shape. We use a special light to harden and set the resin. Once fully hardened, we’ll complete the final shaping, then polish the tooth to ensure it blends in with the rest of your smile.
How long does the bonding process take?
We typically estimate 30-60 minutes per tooth. While the process itself is rather easy, we want to take our time to ensure the bond is shaped properly and blends in beautifully with your natural smile.
How do I care for my bonded teeth?
Because the bonding material can chip or crack, taking proper care of your teeth is important to ensure your bonds last as long as they should. Avoid chewing on hard materials such as pens or ice cubes, don’t bite your nails, and don’t use your teeth as tools. Other than that, take care of your bonded teeth the same way you care for your regular smile. Brush twice a day and floss daily and visit our general dentists for checkups and cleanings.
As with any cosmetic dental procedure, there are benefits and drawbacks to tooth bonding.
- Most cost-efficient cosmetic procedure
- One of the easiest to perform cosmetic procedures
- Typically requires only one visit
- Least amount of natural tooth enamel is removed
- Anesthesia is typically not needed (unless being used to fill a cavity)
- Higher risk of staining than other cosmetic solutions such as crowns
- Bonding material does not last as long as other cosmetic solutions
- Bonding material can chip or break off
- May be ideal for smaller cosmetic changes only
If you have chipped or cracked teeth and are wondering how to restore your smile, schedule a consultation with one of our trained cosmetic dentists. They can help you decide which treatment is ideal for your smile and lifestyle.