The ever-growing demand for minimally-invasive cosmetic dental procedures, has given way to the popularity of composite bonding, which produces predictable results and is a cost-effective treatment for patients. Often compared to veneers, composite bonding aims to address similar cosmetic issues, including chips, wear, discolouration and gaps, with a view to achieving a beautifully restored smile. You might have heard of composite bonding referred to as cosmetic, tooth or dental bonding. Below, we’re delving into the ins and outs of this treatment, covering the what, the how and the why.
The What: What is composite bonding and which issues can treatment address?
Composite bonding focuses on making small cosmetic changes to your teeth, using a formulated composite material. A versatile treatment, composite bonding can help in the following ways:
– Repair chipped and damaged teeth.
– Whiten tenacious stains. Composite bonding is common alongside teeth whitening treatment, helping patients to achieve a whiter and brighter-looking smile.
– Improve the shape and size of a tooth.
– Straighten and align crooked teeth – composite bonding can provide the finishing touches after orthodontic treatment.
Composite bonding vs veneers – what’s the difference?
As mentioned in the intro, veneers and composite bonding are frequently compared to one another, though there are some important differences between these treatments. Although veneers are a more durable solution, one of the great benefits of composite bonding over veneers is that it is a less invasive process. In the case of veneers, patients have a small amount of tooth matter removed, to accommodate the thickness of the veneer. Composite bonding on the other hand, does not involve this shaving process, meaning more of your natural tooth is preserved.
The Why: What makes composite bonding so appealing?
Here are a few reasons to choose composite bonding:
Authentic results: at Shields Dental & Orthodontic Clinic, we use tooth-coloured resin to carry out composite bonding. One of the great things about resin is its semblance to natural tooth enamel, so you can feel confident about your new smile looking authentic and restored.
Minimally-invasive: the procedure is pain-free and doesn’t necessitate any drilling or anaesthetic – good news for nervous and anxious patients who may have viewed this as a barrier.
Speedy: composite bonding can be completed in a single appointment.
Cost-effective: treatment is more affordable than other restorative treatments, such as veneers.
Versatile: composite bonding can address a variety of issues, such as those listed above. It’s also possible to have multiple teeth treated in a single visit and anyone with good dental health is eligible.
The How: What to expect from treatment
Here at Shields Dental & Orthodontic Clinic, every appointment starts with an initial examination of your teeth, followed by a conversation about why you’re unhappy with your teeth and what you hope to get out of treatment. Once we get a good understanding of this, we can go ahead and plan out how best to address the cosmetic concerns you have with a specific tooth or teeth.
The next step is to choose a shade of resin that best matches your smile, so as to give the most authentic-looking result possible. We prepare the tooth by lightly roughening the area and coating it with a liquid gel that allows the resin to attach smoothly. The resin is then applied and carefully molded into the desired shape. We dentists particularly love composite bonding, as it allows us to add the composite material piece by piece, resulting in a very precise result that looks the part – we view this process as a fine art.
A UV light is used to harden the tooth and it’s then shaped and polished until it resembles your other teeth. By applying the composite material gradually in multiple layers, we’re able to achieve the nuance and depth of shade and colour that tooth enamel possesses.
A tailored approach for an outstanding aesthetic result
No two patients have the same smile, tooth shape or facial features, and this is always at the forefront of our philosophy when we carry out composite bonding. By focusing on the finer details and characteristics of your neighbouring teeth (this may be small brown marks, specific areas of translucency or fine lines) we can create a result that looks authentic and in keeping with your smile.
Maintaining the results of composite bonding
We place huge emphasis on prevention here at our practice and this is particularly important after having a treatment such as composite bonding. Whilst composite resin is no substitute for healthy tooth enamel, it can still last for up to around 10 years, if properly maintained. This means:
– Never failing to brush twice a day for two minutes a day and flossing at least once a day to remove lingering food in-between your teeth.
– Avoiding grinding your teeth, as this will wear down the tooth. Let us know if you’re concerned about tooth grinding.
– To avoid the resin becoming stained, limit your intake of tea, coffee and alcohol and quit smoking altogether. If you need help in stopping smoking, please let us know and we can put you in touch with professional services who can support you in this.
– Don’t skip your routine hygienist and dentist appointments, which are vital if you want to preserve a bonded tooth for as long as possible.
Are you interested in choosing composite bonding to restore a tooth? There are several ways in which you can get in touch with us.
We are also offering free, no obligation video consultations during which patients can find out all they need to know about the treatment options we offer. Our friendly reception team can answer any questions you may have about this. Just give us a call.