Do you have a chipped tooth or a space between your front teeth that you are not happy with?
Dental bonding may be the answer for your smile.
Dental bonding is a cosmetic procedure in which a tooth-colored composite resin material is applied to your teeth to improve your smile. Bonding can improve the appearance of teeth that are chipped, broken, cracked, stained or have spaces between them.
Bonding your front teeth actually requires minimal preparation of the tooth. Anesthesia is usually not needed unless there is an old restoration or decay present. The tooth is roughened with a conditioning gel to help the bonding material adhere to the tooth. The composite resin is then applied and hardened with a curing light. Your DHA dentist will then shape and polish the resin to its final appearance.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Bonding
Dental bonding is a great option for certain cosmetic situations. There are some limitations with the composite resin material, so consult your DHA dentist about the best option for you.
Cost: Bonding is one of the least expensive cosmetic procedures.
Time: Unlike crowns and veneers, which require more time to prepare and a second visit to place them, bonding can be completed in a single visit.
Invasiveness: Bonding requires minimal tooth removal. Frequently patients get multiple teeth bonded in one short appointment.
Staining: Although you can achieve excellent results with bonding, the resin does stain over time. Crowns and veneers will be much more stain resistant.
Durability: Crowns and veneers are more resistant to breaking and usually last much longer than bonding.
Success of dental bonding is determined, in part, by the location of the restoration on the tooth. If the bonding is on the very edge of your tooth, it most likely will not last as long because of biting forces experienced when eating certain types of foods. Chewy, hard or crunchy foods will weaken the bonding quickly compared to soft foods. Many patients with bonding on their front teeth avoid directly biting into food that can compromise the structural soundness of dental bonding. A tooth colored bonding can last 4 to 8 years on average, depending on tooth location and patient’s bite and eating/chewing habits.
Teeth that have had dental bonding done do not need different or special at home care. You should brush and floss the areas just like you would for your normal teeth. However, as stated above, dental bonding can and will stain over time. The potential for stain will be much greater (and will happen much faster) for those who consume more coffee, tea, dark cola, red wine, or tobacco products. Also, to ensure the bonding lasts as long as possible, it is even more important than with natural teeth to avoid biting your fingernails or opening packages.
The majority of insurance companies will not cover dental bonding as they consider it cosmetic. However, it doesn’t hurt to call your insurance company to ask if they have coverage for cosmetic dental work. You can also refer to your insurance booklet you were provided to check for cosmetic coverage.
Insurance coverage varies greatly for each individual policy. To find out what percentage may be covered by your insurance plan, refer to the information provided to you when you enrolled, or call the 1-800 number on the back of your card to ask a representative. If you need help obtaining this information, a Dental Health Associates front desk staff member would be happy to help you. If you are a DHA patient, our financial coordinators will help you obtain an estimate of coverage if requested.
We encourage new patients to fill out a new patient form online prior to your first appointment. Be sure to select the appropriate location for your new patient forms, as once you complete them, they are sent electronically to the office you’ve chosen.
Medical and dental insurance can be confusing. Our staff has experience with your questions and can help you get the most from your insurance.
No insurance? Apply today.