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The term bonding is used to describe procedures where tooth-colored dental resins and composites are used. Direct bonding techniques can be used to change the shape and color of teeth as well as to close unattractive spaces. It can also be used to repair chipped or broken teeth or even to cover up unsightly stains. Unlike crowns or caps, direct bonding requires only a minimal amount of tooth reduction thus making it a very conservative procedure.

How It Works

After slight preparation, the tooth is etched with a weak phosphoric acid solution to create a more porous and rougher surface for increased bonding strength. Next, a composite (plastic) resin is placed on the tooth and shaped, contoured and hardened with a special curing light. It is then further shaped and highly polished creating a very natural appearance. The procedure usually requires only one visit and is not painful.

How Long It Lasts

The bonded composite has an average life of four to eight years, and often lasts longer depending on how and where in the mouth it is applied and how it is maintained. The area can be touched up and even re-bonded over time as necessary.

Tooth Colored Fillings

Natural tooth-colored fillings have become widely accepted and are often used in place of metallic restorations where aesthetics is a primary concern. There are even studies that show that in some cases, use of certain tooth-colored materials can strengthen a tooth, making it a better choice than the metallic predecessor – amalgam. Two basic types of tooth-colored restorations are used: composite and ceramic.

Composite Restorations

Composites have been used for many years however their chemical make-up has changed and improved exponentially. The bonding agents used to make the composites adhere to the tooth have improved just as dramatically. Because of the improvements, the use of composites has become widely accepted by dentists and the indications for their use are more numerous. They are being used to close undesirable spaces, improve the shape, size and color of a tooth, replace an unsightly amalgam restoration, cover abraded or worn areas of a tooth (usually at the gum line) and to cover stains. Composites can also be used to protect thermally sensitive areas and to repair and strengthen broken teeth.

How They Are Placed

Once the tooth has been prepared and all decay removed, chemicals and materials are placed on the tooth to increase bond strength and to protect the tooth. Next, the composite material is placed incrementally into the tooth and is hardened by exposure to a special curing light. The restoration is then contoured to fit the bite and then is highly polished. These fillings require a bit more time than the silver fillings because of the number of steps involved. Composite fillings can also be a bit more sensitive, at first, to extreme hot and cold and they may discolor over time if the patient smokes or drinks a lot of coffee, tea or cola. They can also be more expensive and some composites may wear faster than silver fillings; however, they yield a much more natural and aesthetic result.

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Searching for high quality dental care in NJ? We know there are many choices when it comes to choosing the best dentist in New Jersey for you and your family. No Tears Dental is dedicated to providing the highest quality dentistry, utilizing the latest technology and oral health care techniques. We offer gentle general dentistry, advanced restorative, preventative and aesthetic dentistry in a contemporary, soothing environment. We pride ourselves in providing the best dental experience possible for our patients.
Are you missing one or more teeth and looking for a natural, comfortable, permanent means of restoring your smile? If so, consider dental implants. We specialize in Implant Dentistry for residents of New Jersey. The No Tears Dental team is highly skilled in dental restorations and reconstructive dentistry. Learn more about Implants here.
Interested in a fairly new cosmetic dental service called veneers? Veneers are very thin custom layers of porcelain that are sealed to the front teeth for the purpose of improving their shape and color. Results and improvement are often very dramatic, all from this very conservative treatment. The best part is barely any of the natural tooth enamel needs to be removed, sometimes none is removed at all. Learn more about Veneers here.
Looking to restore those pearly whites? By far, teeth whitening is the most popular cosmetic dental procedure. Dental Whitening services fit within almost any budget and the results are quick, painless and easy. Teeth Whitening removes the stains caused from many foods and beverages (including berries, coffee, tea, red wine, etc). This stain removal whitens teeth back to their naturally white stage. Learn more about Teeth Whitening here.