Cosmetic Bonding - What is it?

  • By StarBrite Dental
  • 15 Apr, 2014


Before and After Photos of Teeth with Dental Bonding
Before / After
When it comes to cosmetic enhancement, there is a very fast, yet workable solution. It's a clear aesthetic choice as it's both cost effective and also non-invasive. I'm talking here of cosmetic bondings. What are cosmetic bondings? Well, they've also been referred to as "tooth-colored fillings", or "composite fillings", or even white fillings. The material used in cosmetic bonding can also fill cavities in your tooth. However, one of it's main purposes is cosmetic enhancement.

Did you know you can completely close a small gap in your teeth using cosmetic bondings? All they really need to do is add some composite material to each of the teeth adjacent to the gap. You can even partially reshape a tooth with composite, cosmetic bondings, or even lighten the color of your teeth. (As determined by your dentist.)

The reason these types of "fillings" are very popular is that it is also relatively inexpensive in the case of mild tooth structure damage. If you were to need more extensive cosmetic procedures done such as dental veneers it would be more costly as more of the tooth structure has to be repaired. So for the quick fix-me-up, cosmetic bondings work well.

Well, what about chipped teeth? Have you ever had an accident or have fallen down? Bumped your face into something? Well, what the dentist would use on you would be a composite bonding material to reform the tooth (usually). If, however the chip or break in the tooth is too large, they will probably recommend veneers or even maybe a crown (and in the case where you may have knocked entire teeth out, dental implants would probably be required). But, those small chips are an easy fix with cosmetic bonding.

One hundred years ago we could not have dreamed that you could have a tooth-colored filling adhere to your teeth, in some cases being able to make them whiter, fill in missing gaps, fix chips, and fill decaying holes in your teeth. Even when talking of regular fillings in your back teeth, composite bondings are great and would give you the choice of matching the shade of your tooth color, and have a seamless look to your filling. With an amalgam (metal) filling, when you talk, smile or laugh, those dark spots on your teeth stand out like a black bear in a blizzard.

Patient Testimonial: "After getting the bonding I really noticed how much better my smile is without the jagged edges on the lower teeth. It's smooth and natural."

There was a patient that just came in recently with a slight gap that she wanted closed. In about an hour, with little to no prep work, she came out from the back with a completely closed gap, with no sign composite was put there at all. It’s just so seamless. Check it out:

There is a lot that can be done with composite materials. Because of the fact it does bond with the tooth itself, it provides for a seamless finish. Obviously, when comparing the aesthetics of both composite bondings and amalgam, there is only one real winner, at least in my personal opinion. The good looking one that also functions well.
Photo of Teeth Before Receiving Composite Filling
Before the Composite Filling
Photo of Teeth After Composite Was Placed
After Composite Was Placed

Well, with amalgam vs. composite bondings, functionality is pretty much the same, in that, they both can seal a spot on your tooth that has had decay. Amalgam material has had quite a bit of research connected with it. Composite materials are new in comparison and have not been subject to the decades of research of it’s earlier counterpart. It has also been reported that composite filling material may be subject to staining just as a person’s tooth may be, but this is after quite a long while. Amalgam also contains mercury. Composite bonding material does not.

Composite bondings are made up of a resin based plastic/glass material. The strength of these bonding materials is increasing as the formula for making them is improved upon. Although less known, composite fillings for use in cavity repair are gaining in popularity. A composite filling can also make it possible to take a more conservative approach with removal of tooth structure as the composite itself can be bonded to the tooth, whereas an amalgam cannot (in terms of filling a cavity).

As you can see from everything above, cosmetic bondings and composite fillings are a really great way to keep your mouth looking good, without breaking your bank. They are a fast, easy cosmetic solution. If you have questions about getting them done for yourself, come in for a consultation. Dr. Seifi will give you a consult on what can and can't be done with cosmetic bondings: 301-770-1070.

Stay healthy.

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