What Is Composite Bonding?


Composite bonding is a highly versatile treatment option that is transforming the face of modern dentistry. The use of composite resin began with the introduction of tooth-coloured fillings which replaced dark coloured amalgam fillings. This was seen as a more aesthetic choice for a restoration, however, it was also seen as less strong and durable.

Recent developments in composite materials mean that this resin can now be used for more extensive restorations. It can now be used to replace treatments like crowns, veneers, onlays and inlays.

In this guide, we’ll explore how composite bonding is used in dentistry for a wide range of treatments.

What is composite bonding?

Composite bonding is the process of using composite resin to restore teeth and make aesthetic changes to the smile. While it was once used for purely restorative purposes, it can now be used to change the appearance of individual teeth. It can straighten, lengthen, refine and whiten the teeth without the use of more expensive treatments.

How is composite bonding unique

How is composite bonding unique?

With a treatment like bridges or veneers, impressions have to be taken of the teeth and then these are sent to a lab where the dental restoration is fabricated. The patient then returns to the dentist for the final fitting. If there are issues with the impressions, this can delay the overall treatment time.

With composite bonding, the treatment can be completed in one visit. The resin is applied directly to the tooth and then shaped while it is soft. There is also minimal preparation of the tooth as it only needs to be gently etched to make it adhere to the resin.

Once the desired shape has been achieved, the dentist then hardens the material with a UV light. This makes it solid, so it can be shaped and polished one last time. While the visual properties of composite resin are not as authentic as a material like porcelain or ceramic, it does offer a cost-effective alternative to these more expensive treatments.

How long does composite bonding last

How long does composite bonding last?

The resin will gradually wear down rather than chipping or cracking like porcelain or ceramic. The lifespan of your composite resin restoration will depend on the location, the skill of the dentist and your lifestyle habits.

In general, you should expect composite bonding to last for around 5 years before you need to think about replacing it. You could either repeat the treatment, or you could opt for an alternative treatment such as crowns or veneers.

What are the advantages of this treatment?

The main advantages of composite bonding are that it is fast and cost-effective. You could enjoy a full-smile makeover in just one visit. The treatment is also far cheaper than alternatives like veneers or crowns.

This makes it a popular choice for younger adults who want a quick smile makeover without the price tag. It allows them to decide if they like the cosmetic treatment before commiting to a treatment like veneers, which is more invasive.

What are the disadvantages of this treatment?

While composite bonding offers plenty of perks, there are downsides to consider, too. It won’t last as long as treatments like veneers to crowns. The material is also slightly more opaque than porcelain or ceramic, so it doesn’t look quite as natural.

If you choose to have composite bonding restoration on your front teeth, you will need to be mindful of biting and chewing very hard or crunchy food. There is the risk of chipping the resin or causing it to come loose from your tooth. Habits like opening packages with your teeth or cutting sellotape with your teeth should also be avoided.

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