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Tooth-Colored Dental Fillings for Cosmetic Bonding
If you have a minor cosmetic imperfection, tooth-colored dental fillings might be the answer. These fillings bond to the tooth and repair a variety of cosmetic issues. The process is non-invasive and can be completed in a single visit. Learn more about cosmetic bonding and then visit the dentist to see if you are a good candidate for the procedure.
Cosmetic bonding procedure
Tooth-colored dental fillings are used to fix chips and cracks in teeth. Bonding can also fill small gaps between teeth or cover up discoloration and stains. Dentists also use cosmetic bonding to reshape or lengthen the teeth. Unless the bonding is used to fill a cavity, the area does not need to be numbed. The nerves are not exposed, and there is no pain involved.
Preparing the tooth
Dentists begin by selecting the proper shade of composite resin. This allows dentists to match the color to the existing teeth. Then dentists etch the surface of the tooth to prepare it for the bonding. Finally, dentists place a conditioning liquid on the tooth. This liquid makes it easier for the resin to bond to the tooth.
Applying the resin
The composite resin material is the consistency of putty when it is applied to the tooth. Dentists put it on the tooth and then mold it, so it looks like a natural tooth. Dentists must smooth out the putty and then use a laser or light to harden it. Dentists look at the cosmetic resin after it hardens and shape and trim it some more if needed. Once it is ready, dentists polish it, so it blends in with the other teeth.
How long does the process stake?
It generally takes half an hour to apply tooth-colored dental fillings to a single tooth, but it can take up to an hour. Dentists might require patients to schedule more than one visit when having multiple teeth bonded. This depends on the severity of the cosmetic issue and the location of the teeth. Dentists will provide a schedule for patients during the consultation.
Caring for tooth-colored dental fillings
Cosmetic bonding can last for up to 10 years. However, it is not nearly as strong as tooth enamel, so patients are encouraged to avoiding biting on hard foods and chewing their fingernails. Patients also need to be mindful of what they eat and drink. The material can stain, especially during the first 48 hours following the procedure. Avoid cigarettes, red wine, tea and other foods and drinks that stain during this time.
Getting cosmetic bonding
Tooth-colored dental fillings can be used to treat chips, cracks, spaces and discoloration. This bonding material can even make teeth look longer and fix misshapen teeth. If you are a good candidate for bonding, your dentist will choose a material that matches your existing tooth, prepare the tooth and then apply the bond. Care for your newly bonded tooth after the procedure, so it lasts for years.
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