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A Hollywood perfect smile isn’t something only celebrities, singers, and other famous figures can achieve. You too can achieve that winning smile of natural-looking, properly proportioned teeth with the help of dental veneers. Dental veneers are also referred to as dental porcelain laminates or porcelain veneers and consist of customized, wafer-thin shells of tooth-colored materials. Veneers cover the front surface of your teeth to affect the appearance of your smile positively. With veneers, the shell is bonded to your teeth and in many cases cause no permanent change to their shape, size, color or length.
There are two main types of veneers, porcelain or resin, and while porcelain better resists stains and more accurately mimic natural teeth, resin veneers’ thinner nature requires less tooth surface removal before placement. When you’re considering veneers, discuss the options with your dental professional before deciding on the best solution.
When to consider Veneers
Dental veneers address some cosmetic dental issues including teeth that are worn, chipped, broken, uneven, misaligned, misshapen or have gaps. Veneers can also treat teeth that are discolored from medications, root canal treatment, or large resin fillings.
Dental Veneer procedure
During the initial consultation with your dentist, he or she examines your teeth to make sure veneers are a suitable solution to the tooth problems you want to be fixed. X-rays, photos and impressions of your teeth sometimes happen during the first visit. A preliminary “mock-up” of the veneers is made on a model to ensure a predictable, esthetic result. If it’s decided that veneers will work for you, the dentist removes a predetermined amount of enamel approximately the thickness of the veneer, usually about ½ mm, from the tooth surface, which may or may not require the use of local anesthetic for numbing. Your dentist then creates an impression or model of your tooth or teeth and sends it to a dental lab to create your customized veneer. A highly skilled lab technician will fabricate a veneer that is truly a work of art. The lab usually takes 1-2 weeks to complete the veneers and send them to your dentist. Once your dentist has the veneers, you visit so the dentist can adjust the veneers until they fit your teeth perfectly before bonding them to your teeth permanently. You may need a follow-up visit a few weeks later to examine the gums, bite, and function of the veneers.
Advantages of Veneers
Along with improving the cosmetic appearance of your teeth, porcelain veneers look natural, resist stains, and are well tolerated by gum tissue. Porcelain veneers can make dark teeth appear whiter, thanks to the color choices available. Veneers require less shaping than crowns and are a more conservative approach to alter a tooth’s size, shape, and color,
Disadvantages of Veneers
Unfortunately, porcelain veneers aren’t a suitable choice for everyone, especially those with teeth that are very prone to decay, weakened teeth, weak enamel, or active gum disease. Even for real veneer candidates, their drawbacks include:
- They are not reversible
- Removal of enamel can cause sensitivity, usually temporary
- Color can’t be altered once placed; whitening won’t change color
- More costly than composite resin bonding
- Teeth can still experience decay
Ensuring life of Veneers
With proper professional care, including good oral hygiene practices at home, porcelain veneers can last for many years before requiring replacement.
If you’re considering porcelain veneers or any aspect of cosmetic dentistry, contact our offices to set up a consultation and find out if you’re a good candidate for this cosmetic dental procedure.Schedule a Free Consultation