It is common for dental bonding patients to wonder what they should expect after treatment. Being aware of the possible risks and side effects, along with how to properly care for the teeth after treatment, can alleviate any anxieties patients may have about undergoing the dental bonding procedure.
Here, you will find comprehensive patient information on cosmetic dental bonding risks, side effects, and aftercare instructions.
Some of the risks of dental bonding, such as infection and allergic reaction, are rare. Other risks, such as the bonding material becoming worn down, chipped, or stained, are more likely to occur; as such, patients should expect to undergo dental bonding touch-up treatments every three to 10 years.
- Infection: Before the dental bonding material is placed, infection, tooth decay, and debris must be cleaned away and the tooth sterilized. If an infection is still present after the composite resin material is placed, it will continue to eat away at the natural tooth structure, and will eventually result in the need for root canal therapy or tooth extraction.
- Allergic reaction: It is possible for patients to experience an allergic reaction to the conditioning liquid, composite resin, or tools used during the dental bonding procedure.
- Wearing down of the bonding material: It is certain that composite resin used in the dental bonding procedure will wear down over time, as is the case with a person's natural tooth enamel. In more serious cases, the bonding material can even chip or crack.
- Discoloration of the bonding material: The composite resin material is not completely resistant to staining; further, it will not respond to teeth whitening treatment.
Properly caring for your teeth, and avoiding certain foods, drinks, and habits can slow erosion, chipping, and staining of the dental bonding material.
One of the greatest benefits of the dental bonding procedure is that it is associated with few side effects. That said, some patients, especially those that have undergone some removal of natural tooth enamel, will experience some discomfort in the few days following treatment. This may include tooth sensitivity to hot and cold foods and drinks or discomfort when eating hard or crunchy foods. To limit pain after dental bonding, patients can consume foods and drinks at moderate temperatures and eat soft foods. Pain medication can be taken to alleviate any discomfort.
Dental bonding patients should follow these aftercare instructions to ensure that the composite resin bonding material lasts as long as possible.
- Brushing: Brush the teeth twice a day, ideally once in the morning and once at night, using toothpaste that contains fluoride; Brush the outside, inside, and top of each tooth, and then brush the tongue. Replace your toothbrush every three to four months to ensure that your teeth are properly cleaned.
- Flossing: Floss once a day; be sure to bring the floss all the way up to the gum line and thoroughly remove all plaque before moving on to the next tooth.
- Drink water after meals: Drinking water after meals will help flush out food particles and reduce acidity levels in the mouth.
- Foods and drinks that stain the teeth: Tea, dark colored sauces, red and white wine, berries, sports drinks, sodas, juices, and candies with bright artificial coloring stain the teeth. Foods and drinks with dark or bright colors are the most likely to stain the teeth because of their dark colors; the acidic qualities in many of these foods and drinks can also accelerate tooth discoloration.
- Products that stain the teeth: Use of tobacco products, such as cigarettes or chewing tobacco, causes yellow and brown stains to appear on the teeth and bonding material.
- Foods and drinks that wear down the bonding material: Acidic foods (such as citrus, soda, and wine) eat away at tooth enamel and the composite resin; hard or crunchy foods such as candy, pretzels, and beef jerky can wear down and even chip the bonding material due to the force that is exerted while chewing on these foods.
- Habits that wear down the bonding material: Certain habits, such as biting on fingernails, pen caps, pens, pencils, and other hard objects, wears down the bonding material and tooth enamel over time.
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