Veneers - Improve Your Smile


PORCELAIN VENEERS: FOR A GORGEOUS SMILE

In the past few decades, veneers have gained a lot of attention and popularity as a way to enhance smiles. However, this procedure was introduced in the 1920s by a dentist in Hollywood to improve the smiles of actors and actresses on screen- but this was a temporary solution. He did not have the technology to permanently affix the veneers to the teeth.

In the 1960s, another dentist developed a way to affix the veneers to the teeth so they lasted longer. He slightly etched the teeth with an acidic solution, which improved the grip of the adhesive.  

Over the past 3 decades, emerging technology has made veneers more convenient and lifelike. New types of porcelain have been introduced that are stronger and similar to natural enamel. Digital imaging allows many dentists to do same-day restorations that are almost identical to your natural teeth. Finally, porcelain veneers can be combined with other dental procedures to provide comprehensive results.

WHAT ARE VENEERS?

Veneers are thin ceramic shells that are affixed to the teeth to improve aesthetics. This is a purely cosmetic procedure. Alone, veneers offer no functional improvements. If you require functional improvements, you may want to consider:

When combined with these restorative procedures, veneers can restore aesthetics and functionality.

PROCEDURE

The procedure for porcelain veneers begins like other dental procedures, with an initial consultation. At this time, one of our highly skilled 5thandolive dental dentists will examine your teeth, take x-rays, and discuss your needs and goals. Then, based on their findings, you will either move forward with porcelain veneers or other procedures may be recommended.

At this time, you should let us know if you have dental anxiety and require sedation. If this is the case, we will be happy to discuss our sedation options with you.

PREPARING TEETH

If it is determined that veneers are appropriate for your circumstances, the first step will be to prepare the teeth. Proper tooth preparation ensures that the veneers will look as natural as possible and will also create a bond between the teeth and the porcelain.

  • Enamel removal: first, a thin layer of enamel will be removed from the front teeth. The amount will vary from one patient to another but typically ranges from .5mm to .7mm. In most cases, the amount is so negligible that you don’t need an anesthetic.
  • Impressions: the next step is to create impressions of your teeth. These will be sent to the lab so that the veneers can be customized for your mouth. If you are getting CEREC veneers, digital images will be taken, and the veneers will be fabricated in-house.
  • Placing temporary veneers: if your veneers are being fabricated in an off-site lab, it takes 1 to 2 weeks to get them back. In this case, you’ll be provided with temporary veneers to protect the teeth while you wait.

VENEER FABRICATION

The fabrication process varies depending on the porcelain used. Using dental impressions, a working model will be created. Then, the fabricator will build up multiple layers of porcelain to create your veneer. The layers may be all the same, or each layer may be hand-painted to ensure the most life-like appearance.

The process goes much quicker for the in-office CEREC veneers. A machine fabricates the veneers from a single block of porcelain. The restorations may be further customized by painting/polishing the final product.

VENEER PLACEMENT

Once the veneers have been fabricated, the dentist will make sure that it fits properly and looks right. Specifically, we will make sure the porcelain doesn’t affect your bite or cause alignment issues. If necessary, the porcelain can be trimmed or reshaped. Also, the color can be adjusted as well to further match the surrounding teeth.

Etching tooth: before the veneers can be placed, the surface of the tooth will need to be etched. The dentist will apply a gel to the teeth to dissolve some of the minerals. Then, a bonding agent will be applied to create a strong base for the veneers to attach to.

Cementing veneers: the final step is to cement the veneers to the teeth. Dental cement will be placed on the back of the veneers and gentle force will be applied to set the veneers in place. A curing light will be used to harden the cement.

BENEFITS

Porcelain veneers offer several benefits, including:

LOOKS NATURAL

Porcelain veneers are not a one-size-fits-all treatment. They are customized based on impressions taken by the dentist. Therefore, the color and contouring will mimic your natural teeth. They are also designed to feel natural, allowing you to speak and eat normally. After the veneers have been fabricated, additional adjustments can be made as necessary.

FIXES COSMETIC DENTAL ISSUES

Porcelain veneers address a variety of cosmetic dental issues, including:

  • Gapped teeth
  • Stained/discolored teeth
  • Misshapen teeth
  • Chipped teeth
  • Uneven teeth

Patients who have minor cosmetic dental issues may qualify for veneers. This will boost your confidence by covering up yellow teeth and closing gaps.

DURABLE/STAIN-RESISTANT

Porcelain veneers are not susceptible to decay, and they can resist stains better than your natural teeth. When properly cared for and maintained, veneers typically last 10 to 15 years and maybe even longer.

However, it is important to note that excessive coffee consumption can stain veneers, and using your front teeth to bite on hard foods such as ice can cause them to break or chip.

EASY TO MAINTAIN

Dental veneers don’t require any special or additional care or maintenance. Simply care for them just as you would your natural teeth. Avoid plaque and tartar buildup by brushing twice daily and flossing at least once. Additionally, be sure to schedule regular exams and cleanings- every 6 months.

This will keep your veneers looking nice, allowing you to show off your beautiful, healthy smile. Porcelain veneers are non-porous, so you don’t have to worry about stains and cavities.

MINIMALLY INVASIVE PROCEDURE

The procedure for placing veneers is minimally invasive compared to other tooth restoration procedures. In order to make room, the dentist will need to remove some of the enamel from your teeth. However, it’s such a small amount that you may not even need anesthesia. Then, the veneers are adhered to the surface of the tooth that is visible to others.

WHO SHOULD GO FOR VENEERS?

Porcelain veneers are a purely cosmetic treatment, so it is voluntary and not medically necessary. Still, there are many psychological and aesthetic benefits. Patients who have the following dental issues should consider porcelain veneers:

  • Chipped teeth
  • Dull, yellow, stained teeth
  • Gapped teeth
  • Short teeth
  • Uneven teeth
  • Small teeth

Porcelain veneers give you a brighter, whiter, beautiful smile.

However, the first step to any dental procedure is the consultation and if you have gum disease or other oral health issues, porcelain veneers will not be the best option. You need to have the other concerns/issues addressed first.

VENEER AFTERCARE

On average, porcelain veneers last 10 to 15 years. However, you can make them last longer with proper care and maintenance. Here are some ways that you can care for your veneers to ensure they last as long as possible:

  • Treat them like natural teeth and practice proper oral hygiene, including brushing and flossing. Use a gentle cleanser, not an abrasive one.
  • Combat gum disease- gum disease causes gums to swell and recede, which reveals the edges of the veneers
  • Stop smoking/chewing tobacco- tobacco not only impacts your general health but also your oral health. While porcelain veneers are stain-resistant, that does not mean they cannot be stained at all and once they do become stained, it’s expensive to remove the stains.
  • Wear a mouth guard if you play sports or grind your teeth to keep the veneers from being damaged.
  • Visit the dentist often to keep your veneers in the best shape possible and stay on top or your oral and overall health
  • Avoid hard foods and activities that could damage veneers, such as nuts and candy.

Schedule Your Consultation with the Experts at 5thandOlive Dental

If you’re weighing the though of getting porcelain veneers, schedule your consultation with our experienced dental team at 5thandolive dental. Most of our dentists have been with us for 20+ years. We are ready to work with you to find the most appropriate solution for your dental needs- whether those needs are purely cosmetic or whether you need some functional dental improvements.

FAQ's

At 5thandolive Dental, we understand that even minor cosmetic dental procedures such as porcelain veneers come with a lot of questions. Some of the most common questions we are asked about this procedure include:

How much do teeth veneers cost?

The cost of veneers varies from $1,000 to $2,000 or more per tooth. The total cost depends on the material chosen, how many teeth are being treated, and whether or not there are other procedures involved.

Typically, it takes 2 appointments to get veneers. The following steps are included in the treatment cost of veneers:

  • Enamel removal
  • Impression/mold of prepared tooth/teeth
  • Shading to match your natural teeth
  • Custom-made veneer, which may take several weeks

Since this is a cosmetic procedure, insurance may or may not cover it. Our friendly office staff will work with your provider to determine coverage. If you need financial assistance, we work with CareCredit.

How long do the veneers last?

Typically, veneers last 10 to 15 years. However, with proper care and maintenance may last longer. In some cases, veneers may last a lifetime.

Are veneers permanent?

Yes, veneers can be a permanent solution. Typically, they need to be replaced every 10 to 15 years, but with proper maintenance, may not need replacing at all.

Can veneers be removed?

Once veneers are in place, they are not removable. Therefore, this is a decision that you should not take lightly. This is a commitment.