When you’ve had stains on your teeth for years or you’ve recently sustained a dental injury that left behind a cosmetic defect, it can make your smile feel completely out of place. While veneers can cover imperfections, you may not want to spend so much on dental treatment just to fix a minor flaw. Thankfully, there are cosmetic treatments that are more ideal for the minor stuff.
Direct bonding is a treatment that uses composite resin to fix minor imperfections in teeth. This treatment is ideal for trying to cover up imperfections like cracks, chips, discoloration and even in some instances gaps in between teeth. Composite resin is used because of it’s shading abilities, which allow the dentist to match the resin to the exact shade of your current tooth. This prevents the resin from becoming too noticeable in your smile, while still catering to your ideal appearance.
Direct bonding is not only for cosmetic purposes. In fact, it can also be used to fill cavities, lengthen teeth, and even protect roots that have become exposed due to gum recession. It’s an incredibly versatile treatment that combines restoration and aesthetics.
Composite resin is a putty-like material made from glass and plastic, making it malleable, yet durable. Once you’ve had a discussion with Dr. Chandy on what you’d like changed, she will prepare your teeth by applying an etchant material to your tooth. This will make it easier for the resin to adhere to your tooth. After molding and shaping the resin onto your tooth, the resin is officially bonded via a curing light, which hardens the material almost instantly. Once complete, you’ll get the chance to examine your smile and make sure it looks the way you want it to.
Direct bonding is an incredibly quick process. Depending on the extent of your imperfections, it can take as little as 30 to 60 minutes. That means you can fix your smile issues in your lunch break and be back in time to finish your work day!
The lifespan of direct bonding varies depending on use, but with proper care any application can easily last as long as 10 years before needing any kind of replacement. If you chew on ice, pens or other inedible objects, the chances are much higher that you’ll need retreatment sooner than average. If you bite your fingernails, it can wear the bonding down more quickly.
You’ll also need to brush twice a day with a fluoridated toothpaste, floss daily and visit Dr. Chandy every six months to ensure that the material isn’t breaking down prematurely.