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Is Composite Resin Bonding Right for You?

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Medically Reviewed By Colgate Global Scientific Communications

Deciding between potential dental solutions and treatments can be a daunting task. How long does dental bonding last? Am I a good candidate for this procedure? How much does it cost? We've prepared this helpful guide to help you understand composite dental bonding's ups and downs before you make a decision.

What Is Composite Bonding?

Dental bonding, also known as composite resin bonding, is a technique that adds material to your teeth to alter or supplement their shape. Your dental professional applies and shapes a putty-like resin to your teeth before bonding them permanently in this procedure.

Composite bonding is an attractive option for many looking to approve the appearance of their smile or have damaged their teeth. According to the Cleveland Clinic, bonding materials can last between three and 10 years, depending on your oral hygiene.

Benefits of bonding may include:

  • The procedure can often be completed during a single visit
  • You may not require local anesthesia for the procedure
  • Inexpensive compared to other options
  • Removes less of your natural tooth than alternatives such as crowns and veneers

Potential downsides of bonding may include:

  • Material less stain-resistant than other solutions
  • Lifespan is often shorter than the alternatives
  • The affected area may be prone to damage or breaking

What Can You Expect During Your Visit?

According to the Cleveland Clinic, your visit to bond a single tooth will typically take between a half-hour to an hour. You’ll be glad to hear that you may not even require numbing during the procedure!

Your dental professional will prepare your natural tooth by smoothing it and applying a conditioning liquid during your visit. They’ll then use composite bonding material that closely matches or improved your tooth’s appearance before finalizing the bond with a specialized light source. Wrapping up, they’ll alter the shape of the material to form the desired appearance and structure of your tooth, then ensure that your bite properly fits.

Who’s a Good Candidate for Composite Bonding?

Various options may be a good fit for your dental needs that vary based on several factors. With this in mind, remember that there’s often no single best choice when it comes to your oral health, but instead several that vary based on your personal needs.

You may be a good candidate for bonding if you:

  • Want to enhance the appearance of your tooth, gaps, or smile
  • Have a damaged, chipped, fractured, or decayed tooth (or teeth)
  • Need to cover an exposed tooth root

You may not be a good candidate for bonding if:

  • Your bite is improperly aligned and needs adjustment (for example, from an overbite or overjet).
  • There is not adequate material remaining in your natural tooth to build up from.

When deciding on a dental procedure, the cost is often a major consideration. Luckily, dental bonding is a very cost-effective option compared to its alternatives. According to American Cosmetic Dentistry, bonding typically costs between $300 to $600 per tooth. Alternatives are typically far more expensive, with veneers costing between $925 to $2500 per tooth, according to the American Dental Association.

What Aftercare Is Needed?

When it comes to caring for your bonded teeth, you should continue your regular oral routine but be sure to pay special attention to it. Your bonded teeth may be more prone to damage or neglect, and you can extend their lifespan with a healthy lifestyle and proper oral care habits.

Steps to care for your teeth with dental bonds may include:

  • Brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes using a non-abrasive toothpaste and a soft-bristled brush.
  • Clean between your teeth once a day using floss, a flossing device, or an interdental brush.
  • Don’t grind your teeth or consider wearing a guard.
  • Refrain from chewing on non-food items like pens, pencils, fingernails, and ice.
  • Consume a healthy diet and skip out on overly sugary and acidic foods and beverages.
  • Schedule regular visits to your dental professional to stay on top of your oral health.

Ultimately, your dental professional is the only one who can determine if dental bonding is a good fit for your needs. Be sure to consult them for advice and alternatives to ensure you’re making the right choice for your long-term health, appearance, and wallet. You’ve done a great job informing yourself to make this decision by reading up on the pros and cons of this popular procedure.


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This article is intended to promote understanding of and knowledge about general oral health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your dentist or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.

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