Bonding is one of today’s most popular cosmetic dentistry procedures. Dental bonding is used to alter the color of teeth or to fill gaps between teeth. Bonding is not considered permanent, but it is a simpler, more affordable alternative to veneers.
How does dental bonding work?
When teeth are bonded, composite resins close to the color of a person’s natural teeth are placed between and on teeth. The material used in bonding is made from glass and plastic, which bonds with the natural teeth, creating a natural, improved appearance. The process requires no drilling into the teeth and is ideal for younger people whose teeth are still developing, but need some improvement.
The dental bonding process rarely takes longer than a single visit to the dentist office. Typically, a bonding appointment lasts about 30 to 60 minutes. The surface of the tooth is cleaned and etched with an acidic gel. This opens the pores, so the bonding resin can connect with the tooth. Once the resin is applied, a curing light is used to harden and dry the material. Several layers are painted onto the teeth until it reaches the appropriate thickness. The material can be shaped with a drill if necessary and then polished.
How do I take care of bonded teeth?
Caring for bonded teeth is simple. You should continue to brush and floss daily, and visit the dentist for a cleaning two times per year. Remember the resin can stain, so you should make efforts to protect the color of the bonding. Unfortunately, unlike your natural teeth, bonding resin cannot be whitened, so if it does become stained, it will remain so permanently. It is also important to avoid putting too much pressure on the bonded area because it can cause chipping. If properly cared for, bonding can last up to 10 years.
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