Cosmetic dentistry is well-known for services such as teeth whitening, but did you know that some cosmetic services, such as dental bonding, can repair a tooth while enhancing its appearance?
Dental bonding is one of the many cosmetic services we provide at Dentistry in Paradise in Santa Barbara, California, but not everyone knows the many benefits of bonding. Here, Kevin Miller, DDS, highlights everything you need to know about cosmetic dental bonding.
Who needs cosmetic dental bonding?
Chipping a tooth is easier than you might think, and even everyday activities can result in a chipped tooth. You can crack a tooth while you’re sipping from a glass bottle, chewing ice cubes (which you shouldn’t do!), or even eating crunchy food like corn nuts. If you struggle with bruxism, you’re more at risk of chipping a tooth due to chronic jaw clenching and teeth grinding.
But regardless of whether you chipped a tooth skateboarding, biting into a sandwich, or chomping your teeth while you sleep, cosmetic dental bonding can repair your tooth and prevent additional damage, such as lip or tongue lacerations from jagged tooth edges.
Cosmetic dental bonding can:
- Treat minor chips and cracks
- Improve the shape of your tooth
- Enhance the size of a tooth (especially lengthening your tooth)
- Close small spaces between your teeth
If your tooth is severely decayed or if a molar is cracked, you may benefit from a dental crown instead.
The bottom line is that cosmetic dental bonding is a versatile treatment that repairs minor chips and reshapes your tooth to help you reach your aesthetic goals.
Facts about dental bonding
Dental bonding is a cosmetic procedure that uses composite resin 一 the same material used in composite resin (or “white”) fillings 一 to re-shape your anterior (front) teeth.
Composite resin is tooth-colored, so the bonding material blends in seamlessly with your natural teeth. This polymer-based material can be color-matched with your teeth.
Dental bonding is a procedure that typically requires only one appointment. While the dental bonding process may vary a bit depending on your specific needs and whether you need any other procedures at the same time, the process follows a similar structure. Once Dr. Miller evaluates your needs and determines that bonding is right for you:
- He chooses a composite resin color that matches your natural teeth
- Our team prepares your tooth, roughening the surface so the resin and bonding agent adhere better
- We apply the bonding agent
- Dr. Miller adds the composite resin to the area and then molds and smooths the material to repair damage or reshape your teeth
Composite resin 一 whether you’re receiving a filling or dental bonding 一 is cured with a UV light. Your tooth may undergo additional molding, shaping, and smoothing until your desired look is achieved.
Bonding doesn’t necessarily require local anesthetic unless you chipped a tooth near a nerve or if you’re receiving a filling. Rest assured, your comfort is always our priority. If you have concerns or questions, don’t hesitate to ask!
Caring for dental bonding
Dental bonding doesn’t resist stains as well as crowns, but you can care for your restoration by brushing your teeth twice a day with a soft-bristled toothbrush and toothpaste that contains fluoride. If you indulge in stain-causing foods, be sure to rinse your mouth afterward and brush your teeth when you’re able.
Whether you want to hide a chip or enhance the shape of your tooth, give us a call to find out if cosmetic dental bonding is right for you. You can book an appointment at Dentistry in Paradise online or by calling 805-967-0272.