Composite Bonding

Composite bonding is a minimally invasive and versatile treatment that uses a tooth-coloured composite resin material, carefully sculpted, to change the shape, colour and/or alignment of your teeth. It is also used for closing gaps between teeth, and repairing breaks or chips that can occur. Depending on your need, it can be used for both minor modifications, as well as more complicated tooth reconstructions – making it suitable for both trauma and cosmetic needs.  

What is the treatment process?

As with all of our treatments, the key is to start with a thorough initial consultation. This is to ensure that you understand everything that is involved with your treatment, including the options available, the costs and the full process. Providing you have a healthy mouth that can accommodate the treatment, your dentist will take the following steps:

  • They will start by choosing a resin that best matches your natural tooth colour. Often the teeth are whitened first to provide a brighter base colour for the smile, and the composite resin is then matched to the lighter colour.
  • Once this has been chosen, your tooth surfaces to be treated will need to be slightly roughened to prepare the surface for bonding.
  • A smoothing liquid is then applied that helps the adhesion of the resin (bonding).
  • The composite resin will then be applied to the required area(s) and moulded into the required shape.
  • Using a blue light (similar to an ultraviolet light) the resin is hardened before undergoing a final shaping.
  • The final stage is to polish the resin until it blends seamlessly with the rest of the tooth/teeth.

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What are the benefits of composite bonding?

Unlike crowns or veneers, none of your tooth needs to be removed, so not only is it minimally invasive, it can usually be carried out in just one treatment visit to your dentist. It’s a fast and effective way to address both minor and more complex requirements, making it suitable for those who have suffered trauma or those who have some cosmetic requirements. Because the composite is hardened in the chair, the aim is for you to to leave with a tooth that can be comfortably bitten down on by the end of the appointment. However, we recommend you avoid biting anything hard for at least 48 hours. 

Composite Bonding aftercare

Caring for your composite bonding effectively will determine its longevity. With good care, composite bonding can last between 5-7 years. Yearly repolishing and regular visits to the dentist and hygienist will help to keep it looking fresh, and help deal with any stain that may build up around the edges. 

A time will come however when the composite will need to be removed and replaced, or at least resurfaced, in order to restore its shine and natural appearance. It is important to remember that composite bonding isn’t quite as strong as a natural tooth, so it’s important to employ a bit of caution when eating or chewing anything hard. A perfect excuse to give up any nail biting or pen chewing habits. 

When it comes to food stuffs, as with natural teeth, composite bonding can stain, but in a slightly different way, so we recommend you avoid tea, coffee, red wine, smoking and food which may stain for 48 hours after having the procedure done, and ideally permanently adjust your intake to preserve the colour of composite and minimise staining. Whitening treatments can also help minimise staining and any staining usually occurs at the edges of the composite, where it meets the natural tooth. 

Immaculate oral hygiene and seeing the hygienist regularly will help to preserve your composite bonding whilst maintaining good oral health. If your dentist identifies any signs that you may grind your teeth, he or she may recommend that you wear a mouthguard at night to protect the composites. 

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