Although you may not always wear brightly colored clothing, sporting a white smile is in season year-round. Of course sometimes, cosmetic help is necessary to maintain a healthy appearance. One such method is the process of dental bonding. Before deciding if it's appropriate for you, however, consider this about the procedure's result: How long does tooth bonding last?
What Is Tooth Bonding?
Tooth bonding is a process wherein your dentist applies a composite resin to one or more teeth that have become discolored or physically damaged. The plastic resin will be tooth-colored to blend in, and your teeth can be bonded for numerous reasons. If they're chipped, fractured, discolored or simply decaying, this cosmetic solution may be a great supplement to an improved oral care routine.
An alternative to a composite resin bond is a veneer, made from either porcelain or composite. Porcelain is the stronger of the two, and requires a molding to be taken before it's sent to a laboratory for manufacturing. Composites are therefore a less-costly alternative to porcelain. Whether you receive porcelain or composite, the veneer is then bonded to the tooth using a specific dental instrument.
Extending Its Wear
Composite bonding won't last as long as veneers, but you should be able to wear them for up to 10 years successfully. Nonetheless, this means taking proper care of your teeth by avoiding hard candy, ice cubes and similar substances that can crack the composite material. Another factor that plays a part in determining the life of the bond is the nature of the area that was bonded; keep in mind the composite resin isn't nearly as strong as your natural enamel, and an imperfect bite can limit its life – especially if you grind your teeth when you sleep.
When You Leave the Dentist
Because a bond doesn't provide the same strength as real teeth, it's important to avoid habits such as opening food packaging with your teeth, chewing pen caps and biting your fingernails. Certain substances can also stain the resin used in bonding; coffee, tea and tobacco products are three of the biggest culprits. With this in mind, avoid food and drinks of that nature for the first two days after a bonding procedure. Develop careful dietary habits, brush regularly with a toothpaste like Colgate Total® Advanced Whitening, and be sure to schedule regular cleanings every six months.
How long does tooth bonding last? This is up to you. It's an important consideration when making the choice to undergo the procedure, but if you do your part to take proper care of your bonded teeth, you'll get plenty of mileage out of your new smile.