Important Facts About Dental Veneers
The most important part of looking great is feeling great. A wonderful smile can improve much more than your teeth; the boost in confidence you’ll feel can lead to all sorts of future benefits both personal and professional. If you want a straighter, whiter smile, dental veneers may be perfect for you.
Porcelain vs. Resin Composite
Veneers are custom-made shells designed to fit onto a tooth in order to improve appearance by modifying the length, size or shape of a tooth as well as how white it appears. They can be made of either porcelain or resin composite. Understanding which material is right for you will be part of your discussion with the dentists at Serene Dental Care. It is worth noting, however, that porcelain does have a few distinct advantages over resin:
• Porcelain lends a more natural appearance to your teeth.
• Porcelain is more resistant to stains from substances like wine, coffee, smoking, etc.
• Patients with sensitive gums often find porcelain veneers more comfortable than resin.
In order to prepare a tooth for a veneer, a dentist will remove a very small layer of enamel from the front. While neither type of material requires much enamel to be removed in order to place a veneer, more enamel is removed for porcelain than resin composite.
Once you and your dentist have decided that dental veneers are your best option, you will need to schedule an appointment for veneer preparation. Veneers are custom-made in a laboratory, and your dentist will need to make impressions of your teeth to send to the lab. The veneers generally take a week or so to be sent back to your dentist.
Your next visit is when the actual installation of your veneers will take place. After removing a small layer of enamel from your tooth, the veneer is bonded to it using special cement. Once positioned properly, with any excess cement removed, you will be free to leave.
On average, there is little to no pain during the procedure, as local anesthetic is applied. During the healing process, any discomfort can be relieved using simple pain medication, like Tylenol or Motrin. You will likely have one last follow-up appointment to ensure the veneers are comfortable and applied properly.
What About Dental Crowns or Bonding?
While crowns are generally a more serious treatment, replacing a tooth following, for example, a root canal, bonding is often used only for minor changes.
Veneers occupy the kind of “just right” area for most patients, not too minor, not too intensive. This is also reflected in cost, as crowns are more expensive and bonding is generally cheaper than veneers. Veneers’ cost can range, so you should ask your dentist about the total price of your individual treatment.
Other Aspects to Consider
Dental veneers can be a great option for many situations, but not all. For example, teeth with veneers may be more sensitive to hot and cold temperatures, and, if damaged, can be difficult to repair. Veneers can be problematic for anyone with weak or unhealthy teeth, or for anyone lacking enough enamel on their teeth to which a veneer can be bonded.
Also, while veneers do not require any special dental maintenance, other than standard brushing, flossing and regular dental check-ups, they are not permanent. Dental veneers will need to be replaced every 5 to 10 years. They are not quite as strong as natural teeth either, meaning you would need to avoid jawbreakers, chewing ice or bones, or grinding your teeth.
If you think you would benefit from dental veneers, or have any further questions about the treatment or cost, please Contact Us.