The first step to the bonding process is to complete a color match with a shade guide to ensure the most natural-looking smile possible. Following this color match, your dentist will choose a composite resin color best suited to your tooth color. The affected tooth will be slightly abraded or etched to roughen the overall surface area for the best adhesion possible. A conditioning liquid will then be applied in a light coat to assist with bonding material adherence. Your dentist will then apply putty-like resin after the tooth has been cleaned and prepared. The resin will be sculpted until it reaches the desired shape before hardening the material with UV light.
After the bonding material has hardened, it will then be shaped and trimmed again before being polished to a similar sheen and luster to your natural tooth surface. This process usually takes about 30 – 60 minutes to complete per tooth. For this reason, subsequent appointments may need to be scheduled if multiple teeth require bonding.
Bonding requires special care, even after it has been cured, especially regarding color integrity. For example, it may be necessary to practice avoiding certain medications, coffee, tea, dark sodas, and even cigarettes to prevent stains – at least for a few days. The first 48 hours after a bonding procedure is completed, the most crucial time frame for maintaining color, in addition to regular dental cleanings and daily brushing.