Dental veneers, sometimes referred to as laminates or simply veneers, are thin plastic shells that are adhered to the front surface of visible teeth. They are a cosmetic dental procedure that enhances the size, shape, and color of the teeth. They can also be used to repair minor damage such as chips and cracks.
Did You Know?
Veneers became famous as a popular cosmetic dental treatment because many celebrities have used them to enhance their smiles. Miley Cyrus, Hilary Duff, and Ben Affleck are among the many celebrities who have had veneers placed.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Am I a candidate for veneers or laminates?
Candidates for dental veneers or laminates are those individuals who have structural issues with their teeth. Some examples of possible structural issues veneers can fix include irregularly shaped teeth, crooked or misaligned teeth, unevenly sized teeth, or gaps between the teeth. Additionally, veneers can be used in cases where the tooth’s enamel is excessively worn down or stained. To find out if you are a good candidate for veneers, schedule a consultation with one of our dentists at Lifetime Dental Care today.
Are there different variations of veneers?
Yes, there are different variations of veneers based on material and the amount of preparation needed for their placement. Dental veneers can be made from either resin or porcelain. Resin veneers are beneficial because they require less preparation, are more affordable, and can be placed in a single appointment. However, they are not as durable as porcelain, nor do they last as long. Porcelain veneers, on the other hand, are beneficial because they are highly stain resistant, durable, and have a more natural appearance. However, they are more expensive and require more preparation than resin.
In addition to materials, the amount of preparation can also set apart different types of veneers. Traditional veneers are those that require a small amount of enamel to be removed from the tooth’s surface to fit the veneer. No-prep veneers, on the other hand, require minimal to no-preparation because they are even thinner than traditional veneers.
Both dental materials, as well as both types of dental veneers, have their benefits and drawbacks. To determine which is best for you, consider your treatment and aesthetic goals, budget, and individual dental needs. These things will also be discussed during your initial consultation.
What are the pros and cons of veneers?
What is the process to place veneers?
To place dental veneers, two dental appointments are often needed: one appointment to prepare the teeth and obtain information for the dental laboratory, and one appointment to place the veneers. To prepare the teeth, you will first be anesthetized to keep you comfortable. Then, your teeth will be filed down to remove a small amount of enamel. This allows the veneers to maintain a natural appearance when placed on the teeth.
After each tooth has been prepared, a dental impression will be taken of the teeth. This information will be sent to a dental lab and used to custom fabricate your veneers. In the case of composite or no-prep veneers, little to no preparation will be needed and the reshaping of the tooth is often skipped during their placement.
To actually apply veneers, the fit will first be checked to ensure they look natural when placed on the teeth. Once the veneers have been checked for fit, an adhesive will be placed on the tooth and the veneer will be placed over it. To harden the veneer, a special curing light will be used.
Are there any special post-treatment instructions to follow?
The only post-treatment instruction is to wait until the dental anesthetic has worn off before attempting to eat or drink. Since veneers do not require extensive measures for their placement, they do not require any restrictions in terms of diet or activity levels.
Although there are no post-treatment instructions, there are a couple of things you may experience. After the first procedure where your teeth are prepared, you may experience some tooth sensitivity. Tooth sensitivity can be described as a pain that occurs in response to hot or cold, as well as sugary foods. This usually fades within a week after having the veneers placed.
After the placement procedure, you may find that the veneers feel a little rough. This roughness is generally caused by extra adhesive from the application process. In most cases, the veneers will become smoother as a result of eating and brushing, but the rough spots can be filed down if needed.
How long will dental veneers last?
Dental veneers can last from 5-15 years. How long they last is dependent on what type of veneer was used, the material it was fabricated from, and how well they are taken care of. On average porcelain veneers last longer than composite veneers with a lifespan of 10-15 years. Composite veneers only last about 5-7 years.
A big part of extending the lifespan of dental veneers revolves around preventing them from becoming damaged. Unfortunately, once veneers are damaged, they must be completely replaced. Behaviors such as smoking, nail biting, ice chewing, or using your teeth as an opener, place excess strain on your teeth and can damage veneers. Teeth grinding or clenching is also a habit detrimental to veneers. If you grind your teeth and are considering veneers, it is strongly encouraged that you wear a dental night guard to prevent the veneers from becoming damaged.
Additionally you will want to care for your dental veneers by practicing good oral hygiene. This should consist of brushing twice a day for two minutes at a time with a fluoridated toothpaste and flossing once a day. You will also need to schedule dental appointments with Lifetime Dental Care at least every six months.
To maintain your general dental routine, schedule a consultation with one of our dentists at Lifetime Dental Care today! Lifetime Dental Care serves residents of Woodbridge, VA and the surrounding areas.