What Are Dental Veneers For?
Porcelain veneers or dental veneers as they are sometimes called, are thin, custom-made shells made of tooth-colored materials. They are designed to cover the outer surface on the front part of teeth so as to improve your smile and appearance. They feature shells that are bonded to the front teeth which explain veneered teeth look unique in length, size and color. Read on to learn more about dental veneers.
Dental veneers are mostly made of porcelain or composite materials. Of these two materials porcelain stands out as the better option. It resists stains better than resin, it is durable and most importantly, it mimics light-reflecting properties of natural teeth. Your dentist will help you decide which option works for you best.
You’ll need three trips to the dentist to have dental veneers fixed on your teeth. The first step will be for consultation while the other two will be to make and apply the veneers. Note that you can have just one tooth or a set of teeth undergo the veneering process. Either way, you will have to undergo the following processes:
- Diagnosis and treatment planning – It is the first step which needless to say, will involve your active participation. Be frank with your dentist and explain to him or her your expectations. The dentist may take x-rays at this stage as well as impressions.
- Preparation – Your dentist will prepare your teeth for veneers by reshaping their surfaces. Local anesthetic usually comes in handy at this stage to numb pain and discomfort. Impression or model of your teeth can also be done at this stage. The impression is then sent to a lab, a process that takes up to 4 weeks to have the model impression. In the meantime, you can use temporary veneers for unsightly teeth.
- Bonding – This is perhaps the most important stage as far as getting veneers is concerned. Before veneers are permanently cemented on your teeth, your dentist will temporarily place them on your teeth to examine fit and color. Your dentist will most likely repeatedly remove and trim the veneers as needed to achieve a proper fit. Color shade can be adjusted at this stage with the shade of cement to be used. Your teeth will also be cleaned, polished and etched before veneers can be fixed on them.
Veneers come along with several advantages. The most common one has to be the fact that they provide a natural tooth appearance. In other words, they are aesthetically appealing. That’s not all though. Dental veneers are stain-resistant, gum tissues tolerate them well and they are durable. Take good care of them and you can have them for as much as 15 years after which you must replace them.
Care And Maintenance
Dental veneers are easy to maintain. They do not require special care as is often the case with many dental fixtures. Follow the requisite oral hygiene practices and you’re good. Brush them daily, floss and rinse them with an antiseptic mouthwash.