Dental Bonding

Quick Summary
Dental Bonding
Procedure Length
Approx. 30 to 60 minutes per tooth to complete
In most cases, anesthesia is not needed
Improve appearance and function of chipped, cracked, broken, stained teeth
Recovery Time
No recovery time. Return to work immediately.
Side Effects
Tooth sensitivity and mild discomfort
Final Appearance
Results seen immediately
Duration of Results
3 to 10 years on average
The average cost is between $300 and $600 per tooth.

What is dental bonding?

One of the best methods for treating minor dental concerns like chips and cracks is dental bonding. Also referred to as tooth bonding, or simply bonding, dental bonding involves the application of tooth-colored resin directly to the tooth to repair damage. Bonding is one of the most affordable dental treatments available, making it accessible to most patients.

Cost of dental bonding

The average cost of dental bonding ranges from $300 to $600 per tooth according to the American Dental Association (ADA). In general, dental bonding is considered a more affordable option compared to other dental treatments such as veneers or crowns. If your interested in dental bonding, schedule a consultation with an experienced dentist near you who can provide you with an estimate based on your specific needs.

Factors affecting the cost of treatment

There are several factors that can affect the cost of your procedure. Here are some of the top factors that influence cost.

  • Your Dentist: The experience and reputation of your dentist can affect the cost of treatment. Usually, dentists with extensive training or specialization may charge higher fees. When choosing a dentist, ensure they are certified by the American Board of Dental Specialties (ABDS) or the American Society of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD) with extensive training in dental bonding. Although board-certification and memberships in any organization does not guarantee a successful outcome, dentists must meet stringent criteria in order to achieve membership and board-certification. You can be confident that you are working with a highly trained, and experienced dentist who will help ensure your dental bonding procedure goes smoothly.
  • Your Location: Where the dental practice is located can impact the cost.  Dental services in urban areas or regions with a higher cost of living often come with a heftier price tag compared to rural areas. If you want to get a rough idea of the prices for dental procedures in your local area, you can use the Healthcare Blue Book, which functions similarly to Kelley Blue Book for estimating car prices.
  • Number of Teeth: The cost of dental bonding will depend on the number of teeth that require treatment. Each tooth will have a separate fee, so the more teeth that need bonding, the higher the overall cost.
  • Materials Used: The quality of materials used for dental bonding can also affect the cost. Different dental practices may use different materials, and higher-quality materials may be more expensive.
  • Complexity of the Case: The complexity of your dental bonding case can influence the cost of treatment. Cases that require significant work may require more advanced treatment techniques, appliances, and additional time, resulting in higher costs.
  • Additional treatments: In some cases, dental bonding may be part of a comprehensive treatment plan that includes other procedures. The inclusion of these additional treatments will increase the overall cost.
  • Dental Insurance: In certain cases, dental bonding may be covered by insurance if it’s deemed necessary for functional purposes however it will depend on the type of dental plan.

If you are considering dental bonding, schedule a consultation with an experienced cosmetic dentist near you. This will allow you to discuss your dental goals and gain a thorough understanding of the specific cost breakdown and factors that pertain to your individual case.

Is the cost covered by insurance?

Dental insurance coverage for dental bonding can vary depending on your specific insurance plan and provider. Generally, dental bonding is considered a cosmetic dental procedure rather than a medically necessary treatment. As a result, some dental insurance plans may not provide coverage for purely cosmetic procedures.

However, when dental bonding becomes necessary for functional reasons, such as fixing a chipped tooth or filling a cavity, there’s a chance that it may be covered by your dental insurance. In these situations, insurance plans designed to cover restorative or preventive procedures might offer partial or complete coverage.

Carefully review your dental insurance policy or get in touch directly with your insurance provider to get a better idea of coverage. They can give you precise details regarding whether dental bonding falls under your coverage and to what extent it is covered.

Your dentist’s office can also be a helpful resource. They can verify your insurance coverage and provide guidance on what you can expect to pay out of pocket for dental bonding.

Learn more about the basics of dental insurance from the National Association of Dental Plans (NADP).

Is it right for you?

Although dental bonding is a relatively simple and straightforward restorative or cosmetic solution for a variety of dental concerns, it may not be the best option for everyone. The best application for dental bonding includes:

  • Fixing chipped/cracked teeth
  • Improving the appearance of discolored teeth that cannot be fixed by teeth whitening treatments
  • Lengthening teeth for cosmetic purposes
  • Closing small gaps between teeth
  • Reshaping teeth to improve smile aesthetics
  • Protecting part of the tooth’s root that has been exposed due to receding gums or cavities

Dental bonding is also an alternative to traditional, silver-colored amalgam dental fillings.

Treatment details

One of the most important aspects of composite bonding is ensuring that the bond matches the natural color of your tooth. Your dentist will use a basic shade guide to find a color match for the composite resin.

Anesthesia is usually not required, unless the bonding is being used to fill a decayed tooth or cavity.

Once the correct color of composite resin is chosen, your dentist will prepare your tooth by applying a gentle acidic solution called an etchant. The etchant makes the surface of your tooth rough so that the composite resin attaches cleanly onto it.

The resin is applied in a putty-like form, then shaped and smoothed until your dentist achieves the desired look.

A curing light is then used to harden and complete the bond.

When will I see results?

The entire procedure can be performed in under an hour per tooth, with results visible immediately after treatment. Your dentist will recommend you avoid certain food and drinks that may stain your teeth for a few days after the bond is placed. These include coffee, tea, red wine, etc. If you are a cigarette smoker, you should also avoid smoking during this period.


Although bonding is an affordable solution to a number of dental concerns, one of the cons is that it is not quite as durable as porcelain restorations. Composite resin is more susceptible to chips and cracks, meaning you should avoid hard, crunchy foods when possible.

Avoid chewing on hard objects as well, such as ice, pens, and your fingernails. You should also consider wearing a mouthguard when playing sports that could risk harm to your teeth, or if you grind your teeth as well.

Composite resin may also stain, so be wary about the amount of coffee, tea, red wine, and other staining drinks; using a straw may help protect your teeth. Smokers also face additional issues with staining and should consider quitting to protect their composite-bonded tooth/teeth.

How long will my results last?

If you take good care of your dental bonds, they can last between three to ten years before needing a touch up or replacement. Continue to practice good oral hygiene by brushing and flossing and visit your dentist annually to ensure the bond is still holding well.

Alternatives to dental bonding

Dental bonding offers a cheap and easy way to fix cracks and chips in teeth; however, there are more options that may be used as well.

Dental VeneersVeneers are ultra-thin shells made of composite resin or porcelain that are placed over the natural tooth. These are also designed to address chips and cracks, tooth discoloration, and spacing issues. Porcelain veneers resist staining better than composite resin bonding, look natural, and are long-lasting (between 10-15 years). Veneers are more expensive than dental bonds, ranging from $300-$1,500 per tooth for composite resin, and $900-$2,500 for porcelain.

Dental Crowns – If your teeth cannot be fixed using a dental bond, then dental caps & crowns may be the solution for you. These are used if you have a cavity that cannot be filled due to lack of remaining tooth structure, a weakened tooth that needs support, or if your tooth is discolored or misshapen. Dental crowns requires your teeth be prepared by grinding them down for the cap to fit on top. Crowns are custom fit and fabricated in dental labs outside of your dentist’s office, so the process takes longer than dental bonding. Depending on the material used, dental crowns can cost between $800-$3,000.