Teeth bonding is a restorative procedure in which a tooth-coloured, composite resin-based filling is placed over a fracture, damaged or discoloured teeth. This procedure is known as bonding as the filling is directly applied, shaped, hardened and then bonded to the damaged tooth. Teeth bonding is one of the most commonly performed dental procedures throughout the world.
Who Can Benefit from Teeth Bonding?
Composite bonded fillings not only provide excellent aesthetics, but they are also sufficiently durable to restore a damaged tooth. You can benefit from teeth bonding if you have any of the following problems:
- Crooked or chipped teeth
- Fractured teeth
- Replacement of old amalgam fillings
- Cosmetic treatment permanent teeth stains
- Permanent tooth restoration after root canal treatment
Is There Any Preparation Required for Bonding?
A good thing about composite fillings is that they do not require any prior procedure or treatment. Anaesthesia is also not required unless the cavity is deep and there are chances of pulp exposure when your dentist removes the damaged tooth structure.
What is the Procedure for Dental Bonding?
The procedure for teeth bonding is very simple and straightforward. Multiple teeth can be restored with bonding is a single sitting. Here are some of the steps involved in a bonding procedure:
- Consultation – your dentist will examine your teeth in detail to determine the extent of damage, and to prepare a treatment plan which fits your dental needs.
- Tooth Preparation – if your dentist feels that you are a suitable candidate who can benefit from bonding, then the next step is to remove the cavities and the discoloured tooth structure. Administration of a local anaesthetic agent is usually not required if the cavities are not very deep. At this stage, your dentist will also select the shade and colour of the resin filling, so that it exactly matches the neighbouring teeth.
- Etching – after tooth preparation, your dentist will apply a mild acid over the prepared tooth surface. This is done to make the prepared surface porous so that the composite filling can penetrate and bond with the tooth. The etchant is washed away after 30 seconds of application.
- Bonding – finally, your dentist will apply a conditioning agent, which promotes bonding between the tooth and the resin filling — next, the composite bonding on the tooth structure. The filling is usually placed in small increments and then shaped. Each increment is then hardened by using a special LED or ultraviolet light. When the cavity has been restored, the final increment is shaped and polymerised.
- Polishing – The bonded filling is then polished to provide maximum aesthetics, and to minimise chances of food impaction and bacterial adhesion.
Here are a few things you should take care of after the procedure:
- Avoid coffee, tea, tobacco and other beverages like wine and grape juice which can stain your teeth, for at least 48 hours after the procedure.
- If you feel that the restored tooth is “higher” than the rest, then you should consult your dentist immediately.
- You can safely eat with your bonded fillings, unlike the silver-amalgam filling. However, you should avoid eating extremely hard foods immediately after the procedure.
- Make sure your brush twice and floss at least once each day. This will not only help in improving your oral health but also prevent staining of the filling.
How Long will Dental Bonding Last?
With the advent of modern composite filling materials, the clinical service life of bonded restorations has been enhanced remarkably. If looked after properly through optimal oral hygiene care and, dietary care and regular dental check-up visits, you can extend the life of bonded filling beyond ten years.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Teeth Bonding
The following table summarises the pros and cons of composite bonded fillings:
|Tooth coloured fillings||Staining of the fillings can occur
|Tooth conservation||Not as strong as veneers or crowns
|No need for laboratory procedures|
|Placed in a single sitting at the chairside|
|No adverse effects|
|Restorations can be repaired|
The following table summarises the average cost of restoring a tooth with bonding in different countries of the world:
What is the Cost of Bonding Worldwide?
|Country||Average Cost per Tooth|
|New Zealand||NZ $400-1600|
Bonding Vs Veneers
There are generally two types of bonding procedures; direct and indirect. Composite resin fillings are attached to the tooth through a direct bonding procedure, as the procedure is carried out entirely at the dental chairside. On the other hand, an indirect bonding procedure is one where the prosthesis is prepared outside the oral cavity. Tooth restorations which are indirectly bonded to the teeth include the veneers and crowns.
Veneers are very thin shells or resins or porcelain which are attached to the front surface of crooked teeth to restore their shape and aesthetics. During the indirect bonding of veneers, the damaged tooth is first prepared by removing the teeth cavities. Afterwards, an impression of the prepared tooth is made, and sent to the laboratory for fabrication, along with the information regarding the desired shared of the veneers. The prepared veneers are then attached to the tooth by using adhesive cement.
Bonding Vs Veneers; Which is Better?
Here’s a brief comparison between bonded composite restorations and veneers:
- Durability – in terms of strength and durability, veneers are longer lasting than composite bonded fillings.
- Aesthetics – since the veneers are prepared inside the laboratory where there is a lesser margin for error, they possess superior aesthetics in comparison to bonding.
- Cost – the cost of bonding is lesser than the veneers.
Overall, both bonding and veneers have their own merits and demerits. Therefore, the choice of using bonding or veneers for restoring damaged teeth should be made by your dentist, while considering your dental needs, aesthetic demands and budgetary constraints.
You can find more dental guides and other available treatment options at Nearby Dental.