Dental veneers allow us to give patients a truly dramatic smile makeover, but they’re also a fantastic option for correcting only a few teeth.
Veneers are made with a thin, tooth-colored porcelain material that covers the front of the tooth surface, wrapping around the edges slightly. We use dental veneers to correct the following cosmetic issues:
- Yellowing, stains, and other discoloration
- Gaps between teeth
- Uneven tooth lengths
- Chipped or cracked teeth
- Slight misalignment of the teeth
- Teeth shape and size
These issues can also be corrected by other cosmetic dental procedures, including teeth whitening, composite bonding, Invisalign, and crowns, so during your initial consultation at our practice, we will go over the various treatment options with you and determine which one will best meet your treatment goals and budget. While veneers are costly, they also produce long-term results and allow us to correct a number of different aesthetic issues all with one cosmetic treatment.
The first step in getting dental veneers involves removing a small amount of enamel from your teeth and taking impressions, which are used by a dental laboratory to create custom-made veneers that are the perfect size and shape for your mouth. When your veneers are ready, you’ll come back to our office and we’ll clean your teeth thoroughly to remove any plaque and tartar that could cause tooth decay under your veneers, then we shave more enamel from the surface. Local anesthetic is used to make sure you do not feel any discomfort during the process. Using dental cement, we apply the veneers to the fronts of your teeth and use an ultraviolet light to cure them. The curing process is completed in minutes; you can then leave our office and go back to work, school, and your other daily activities.
Once your veneers are placed, maintaining them is simple. Brush twice a day and floss at least once a day. See your dentist every six months for exams and cleanings, and ask your dentist for a bite guard to wear at night if you clench your jaw or grind your teeth in your sleep. Avoid biting your fingernails, ice, or anything else that could damage your veneers. While it is very rare for veneers to break off of teeth, it can happen, especially if you don’t follow these guidelines.
There are a variety of options when it comes to dental veneers. For the best results, invest in custom-made porcelain veneers. Inexpensive prefabricated veneers may cost less, but when veneers are not made to fit your specific teeth, the cookie-cutter results can appear fake, making it apparent that you have veneers. High quality porcelain dental veneers look extremely realistic, so no one will guess that they’re not your natural teeth. You can expect your dental veneers to last anywhere between five and seven years for no-prep veneers and 10 to 15 years for traditional porcelain veneers.