Minimally Invasive Dentistry By David Taylor
Composite bonding – using a ’ brush and sculpt ‘ technique.
Advancements in the quality of materials and ever improving techniques means it is now possible to make major changes to a person’s smile without the need to damage the underlying tooth structure and with minimal or no use of drilling.
Composite bonding refers to ‘gluing’ or bonding a tooth coloured filling material to individual or multiple teeth. This can be used to repair fractured and worn teeth or too alter the shape of the teeth.
Sometimes only subtle alterations are needed to make a huge difference to the appearance of the teeth. Other times, severely broken down teeth, where crowns had in the past been the only option can now be restored successfully and cost effectively.
How does this technique work?
The ‘brush and sculpt’ technique takes bonding to new heights. The latest tooth coloured, hybrid composite uses nano-technology and if placed carefully and correctly can mimic perfectly the appearance of a natural tooth.
The technique uses pre-prepared moulds and an artist’s brush to slowly build the composite in layers as the enamel and dentine are layered in a tooth. The composite can usually be blended seamlessly with the tooth so no join is visible giving a completely natural appearance.
The result is a lovely, long-lasting smile achieved without damaging the underlying tooth structure and without the complications sometimes arising from crowning the teeth.
The pictures below are examples of what can be achieved..
Here filling material has been added to two teeth to disguise their shape. The before picture shows the situation after orthodontic treatment. One tooth is narrow and on the opposite side there is a tooth missing. Composite blending with the natural shade of the teeth has been added to produce a more pleasing symmetric appearance.
This patient had damaged and unsightly veneers on the two front teeth. The shape of the teeth was too square and not very harmonious with the rest of the arch. After removing all the existing restorations from these two teeth, composite was added using a layering technique. This can be blended very well to mimic natural tooth producing a very aesthetic and long lasting solution.
We see here a tooth damaged as a result of trauma. Taking time and care filling material is added to blend seamlessly with the fractured tooth. This at one time would only have been possible with a laboratory made crown necessitating drilling the tooth down causing potentially more trauma. This way potential future problems can be greatly reduced and matching the shade is much easier.
Very similar to the above case this shows a tooth previously damaged and restored with a tooth coloured filling. This filling although not bad does not blend easily with the tooth and lacks the natural translucency of the adjacent teeth. The filling is removed and a new one layered respecting the minute detail and character of the natural enamel. Can you tell there is a filling there?
Multiple spacing and slightly irregular teeth were a concern here and there was a desire for no braces. Again composite filling material was added with no drilling of the teeth involved to produce instant results in one appointment