To protect your teeth and restore your smile to its former glory, all that may be needed are a few veneers. These customizable tooth coverings are bonded directly to the surface and can thus alter their size, length, shape and perhaps most importantly, color. The porcelain versions are widely considered the better alternative to their resin composite counterparts, namely because the material itself is more stain-resistant and have a greater ability to mimic how real teeth reflect light.
Praising Porcelain Veneers: Why You May Want Them
To the untrained eye, it can be difficult to differentiate porcelain veneers from the real deal, and this is precisely why they are so popular among patients. People who have severely discolored, chipped or misaligned teeth can benefit greatly from veneers, and an increasing number of dentists are recommending them as a corrective solution.
Other common issues that they have been known to fix include worn enamel and gaps between teeth. Essentially, any problem you can think of aesthetics-wise can be cured by porcelain veneer inserts. Another notable benefit that porcelain veneers offer is better cooperation with gum tissue; there is far less chance of inflammation or aggravation.
How Does the Process Work?
Keep in mind that porcelain veneers are not for everyone. You will need to speak with your dentist at an initial consultation in order to determine whether this is the best option for your oral concerns. If discoloration is the primary concern, the doctor may advise specialty toothpaste and implement a strict, cleaning regimen instead, particularly if there is a strong chance of whitening the teeth to their original state.
Veneers are typically recommended for people who suffer from discoloration caused by things like the side effects of root canal treatment, tetracycline stains and/or excessive resin fillings and fluoride use. After the determination has been made that veneers are the best remedy, your dentist will likely take an x-ray of your mouth as well as impressions of your teeth to get an accurate idea of what is needed for the job.
When the times comes to have the veneers applied (at a future appointment), the dentist will proceed to remove approximately ½ millimeter of surface enamel. The reason being that this is how thick the veneer will be when applied; an anesthetic can be applied if the need is available. The mold/impression will be made and your dentist will send it off to a lab for creation. This process may take a couple of weeks, at which point you will go back to have the veneers installed.
The bonding process usually takes the most time, as precision measurements and subsequent modifications to the veneer (in the form of trimming) will need to be performed to ensure the perfect fit. Your teeth will be cleaned and etched for preparation, and finally the porcelain veneers will be cemented. The curing process is relatively short, due to the use of laser technology that serves to engage the bonding properties of the material. Once on, your dentist will make any needed post-installation adjustments and may ask you to bite a mold for measurement purposes.