Which System Is Best For You?

Veneers are versatile.  They can correct stains, breaks, and odd shapes, and they can lengthen individual teeth.  Another major benefit of veneers is tooth conservation: little enamel is removed in preparation for the restoration.  Porcelain veneers, however, aren’t ideal for people with severe bite problems or for those who grind their teeth – a habit that can break the veneer.

Tooth Composite Bonding

In tooth bonding (cosmetic bonding), a composite resin material is applied to the tooth and then sculpted and shaped to cover damaged areas or to fill in gaps.

This material comes in several shades so it can be matched to the natural color of your tooth.  Bonding usually requires only one visit, so it is less time-consuming and less expensive than other tooth restoration methods

Tooth Bonding Consultation

During the consultation, your dentist will talk to you about the changes you would like to make in your appearance.  He will explain the different options available to you, the procedure itself, and its risks and limitations.

Your dentist will begin with a complete medical history and an examination of your teeth and gums.  He may also take “before” photos, and give you specific instructions on how to prepare for the procedure.

Uses for Tooth Bonding

Bonding’s “claim to fame” is its etching technique, a process of preparing the natural teeth so that restorative materials will more easily adhere.  This unique technique makes bonding useful for many different types of corrections including:

  • Repairing Chipped Teeth: Teeth Bonding can be used to repair chips and fractures.
  • Closing Spaces: Tooth Bonding can be used to widen or lengthen teeth.
  • Attaching Restorations: Dental Bonding is used to attach other restorations, such as porcelain veneers.
  • Whitening Teeth: A white resin can be bonded to a tooth to mask a particularly stubborn stain.
  • Replacing Old Fillings: A white filling is bonded to the tooth, replacing old, stained fillings in front teeth.

The Tooth Bonding Process

The procedure is virtually pain-free, although you may experience some discomfort during the tooth-roughening phase.

The dentist will prepare your tooth for treatment by roughening and shaping or contouring the surface.  Next he will apply a conditioning solution and bonding agent that together act as a strong adhesive or glue, to ensure that the composite will adhere.  Next he will apply the putty-like tooth colored composite material, sculpting it to correct the problem areas.  Several layers of the composite material may be necessary in order to achieve the best results.

To cure and harden the material, a high-intensity light or a chemical agent may be used.  Finally, your dentist will smooth and polish your tooth to give it an even, natural contour.

Except in complicated cases, bonding can be accomplished in one visit.  The length of the visit will depend on the condition of your teeth and on how much repair work you are having done.