Why Some Dentists Are Afraid of Taking my Bonding Off?

I want to take off new bonding done on my teeth so that I could close my gaps with braces. My orthodontic sent me to my dentist to take the bonding off and my dentist said the doctor that put it on should take off. I am afraid. Is there anything I should know about taking off bonding? Isn't it supposed to be a reversible procedure? I had it as result of Invisalign IPR left over and the dentist bonded them. I hate the way they look and want to close them with braces.

Doctor Answers 11

Bonding Removal

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Bonding is reversible as long as no tooth structure underneath was removed when the composite material was placed. If some tooth was removed, then you'll likely need some more bonding to repair that area. I'm not really sure why your dentist doesn't want to remove it, one possible reason could be if the bonded area is very large or thick then it could be more difficult to remove without sacrificing additional tooth structure. This could also just be a misunderstanding/miscommunication between the two doctors. It's ok to ask one or both doctors for an explanation.  

Cleveland Dentist

Bonding is NOT reversible

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While to the naked eye it may seem reversible, any bonding procedure is irreversible.  Bonding composite material or porcelain to enamel is identical in process.  The enamel is chemically treated and a bonding resin is applied.  Composite is placed or porcelain is placed using a resin cement, and then this is cured.  To remove all of this requires cutting it all off with a rotary instrument, and then polished smooth.  While great care can be used to be as conservative as possible, the tooth IS altered.

As to why a dentist would not want to remove enough bonding to allow orthodontic treatment, that is a puzzle.  I see no reason not to help, as long as all risks are explained and agreed upon.

Bonding after Invisalign

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When the orthodontic treatment is finished all bonding that previously has been placed for these purposes is usually removed. If you had composite bonding placed to improve the retention for Invisalign there shouldn`t be any problem to remove it and polish the enamel surface, to bring the enamel in orinial condition. It seems as a pretty straight forward situation without any underlying issues. However, you should ask your orthodontist why it can not be performed in his office and see you general dentist if there is any concern. 

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Removing "bonding" prior to braces

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The term "bonding" can refer to several different types of restorations.  If the type you're referring to is tooth colored plastic resin between the teeth it should be a simple matter for any dentist -- the one who placed it or your orthodontist -- to remove it.  If on the other hand you are referring to a restoration that covers the entire front surface of the tooth, it might be better for the dentist who placed it to alter it since that person would know exactly what was done, how thick the material is, etc.  I gather that this bonding is just between the teeth and was done to close residual IPR spaces, so it should not be difficult for your orthodontist to remove it.  Ask him/her why she wants the dentist to perform this procedure; perhaps there is a good reason.

Brian Povolny, DDS, PhD
Seattle Orthodontist

Removing bonding

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There are no issues in removing bonding, as long as the dentist who did it did not remove any enamel before he applied the bonding. If he did, you will immediately have to replace it with new bonding.

Mitchell A. Josephs, DDS
Palm Beach Dentist

Removing bonding

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If the bonding covers the front surface of the teeth, not just the sides, the tooth could look bad if the bonding is removed.  The dentist would know whether you have a good enamel surface under the bonding or not.  Most orthodontists will shave the sides to make the tooth narrower because that is not a cosmetic issue.

The orthodontist may just be being courteous to the dentist as you are his patient and he does not want to interfere with another dentists treatment.

Thomas Braun, DMD
Fairfield Orthodontist

Removing old bonding

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There should be no reason why old bonding cannot be removed. The dentist removing the old bonding must be aware of what is underneath and  inform the patient of any potential risks. A tooth that is mostly bonding may not be stable, but this would be seen from the x-rays. One must be careful not to damage the tooth under the bonding if that tooth was never prepared. What you are asking for makes sense. Good luck with your dentistry.

Fred Peck, DDS
Cincinnati Dentist

Taking bonding off

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Should not be a big deal at all to take the bonding off.   It's a very easy procedure, just requires a little bit of polishing.  Your orthodontist may be able to do it as well.  Good Luck!

Peter Mann, DDS
Manhattan Dentist

Taking the bonding off

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Not sure why the orthodontist just doesn't remove the bonding himself, that's what I would do.  I guess the dentist doesn't want to be responsible for your teeth if something happens?  Of course every situation is different but I see no reason why this should be a big deal

Robert Waxler, DMD, MS
Saint Louis Orthodontist

Replacing old bonding

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Bonding is a term that refers to adhering acrylic plastic to the calcium of teeth.  Within the acrylic plastic are porcelain powders which lend color and strength to the acrylic, and together the mixture is called 'composite'.  Bonding composite to either enamel, dentin or old composite each requires a different chemistry process.  However enamel, dentin and old composite can all look the same; so a dentist has difficulty deciding which chemistry to use or will he have to combine chemistry.  If he uses the wrong bonding method, then the new bonding will come off prematurely, perhaps within a few days.  No one likes complications and replacing old bonding can involve such complications.  

Neal Nealis, DDS
Chicago Dentist

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.