Dental veneers are a term often thrown around by dentists with patients who have irreparable damage and staining to their natural teeth. But what exactly is a veneer and why is it an option worth considering?
What is Porcelain Dental Veneers?
Porcelain Dental Veneers are wafer-thin shells made from ceramic or composite resin that are bonded to the front of the natural teeth permanently. They’re ideal for improving the appearance of the front teeth and can be placed to mask discolorations, to brighten teeth or to improve a smile.
Why should I consider veneers?
Veneers are considered to be a great alternative to crowns in many situations, as they are able to change a tooth’s colour, size or shape without the invasive surgery required by a crowd. They’re also great ways to mask damage from staining, damage or as a result of a root-canal procedure. Some patients even use them to cover gaps in front teeth or teeth that have become chipped. As a general rule, veneers last many years and when fitted properly, have remarkable longevity.
What can I expect?
Veneers will never look exactly like natural teeth, but they are very close. That is to say, most people won’t notice that you’ve got veneers unless they get right up close and study them. Having said that, expect slight variations in colour of your veneers compared to your natural teeth, as you would in comparing two normal teeth against each other. Regardless, veneers have shown to improve self esteem.
What happens in the dentist chair if I decide to get veneers?
Usually, patients require around three appointments for the entire procedure which involves diagnosis, treatment planning, preparation and finally, bonding. It’s important that you feel involved in the process, as it’s your smile that you have to walk away with, so you’ll want to ask questions about the corrective limitations of the procedure, as well as ensuring your dentist understands what you’re looking to get out of having veneers. Having a veneer fitted is not too different to a normal dentist appointment, in that there is buffing and cleaning, however occasionally you may need to undergo general aesthetic if the buffing goes deeper than is normal. Then the veneers are fitted using bonding cement.
How can I maintain my veneers?
Like all cosmetic changes, it will take a little time to get used to your new veneers, usually a week or two. Keep brushing and flossing daily and then book a follow up appointment for your dentist to check out the veneers and ensure they’re fitted and working as intended.