Porcelain Veneers

What are Veneers?

Dental veneers (sometimes called porcelain veneers or dental porcelain laminates) are wafer-thin, custom-made shells of tooth-colored materials designed to cover the front surface of teeth to improve your appearance. These shells are bonded to the front of the teeth changing their color, shape, size, or length.

There are two forms of dental veneers:

  • Porcelain Veneers are thin ceramic shells that are bonded to the existing teeth, however porcelain veneers are more resilient to surface staining and have a longer lifespan compared to Composite resin veneers.
  • Composite Resin Veneers are thinner than Porcelain veneers and require removal of less of the tooth surface before placement. They also are a more cost effective option to porcelain veneers.

You will need to discuss the best choice of veneer material for you with your dentist.

When would you use Veneers?

Veneers are routinely used to fix:

  • Teeth that are discolored due to root canal treatment; stains from tetracycline or other drugs, excessive fluoride or other causes; or the presence of large resin fillings that have discolored the tooth
  • Teeth that are worn down
  • Teeth that are chipped or broken
  • Teeth that are misaligned, uneven, or irregularly shaped
  • Teeth with gaps between them

What is the procedure involved in getting Veneers?

  • Diagnosis and treatment planning. In this process the dentist and the patient have a discussion and the dentist performs an examination and assessment and discusses the best possible treatment options.
  • Preparation. To prepare a tooth for a veneer, your dentist will be required to trim off the enamel. Then the dentist will take an impression of the teeth to be sent to the labs.
  • Bonding. Before the dental veneer is permanently cemented to your tooth, your dentist will temporarily place it on your tooth to examine its fit and color. He or she will repeatedly remove and trim the veneer as needed to achieve the proper fit; the veneer color can be adjusted with the shade of cement to be used. Your tooth will then be cleaned, polished, and etched. Then the ceramic veneer is cemented and placed on your tooth. Once properly position on the tooth, your dentist will apply a special light beam to the dental veneer, which activates chemicals in the cement, causing it to harden or cure very quickly. Finally any adjustments in the veneer or the bite will be assessed and performed as necessary.
 

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