Sometimes, not even the most thorough cleaning can bring your smile back to its original luster. In other instances, damage or misalignment can make it seem like your teeth will never reach the appearance you would have them to be.
Cosmetic veneers, however, can provide a profound transformation of your smile, correcting the vast majority of dental conditions.
What are Dental Veneers?
Dental veneers, or cosmetic veneers, are customized, cosmetic coverings that are adhered to the surface of a tooth. They are typically made from porcelain or composite materials like resin, and are designed to mimic the appearance of natural, healthy teeth.
Along with changing the shade of underlying teeth, veneers are used to reshape broken and crooked teeth, minimize gaps between teeth, and smooth out the gum line. Veneers can be applied to one or multiple teeth, depending on the severity of correction needed.
What Conditions can Veneers Improve?
Veneers are typically reserved for situations when significant changes are needed. Some of the most common problems that are addressed with cosmetic veneers include:
Irregularly shaped or uneven teeth
Teeth that have been broken, chipped or cracked
Teeth with significant gaps between them
Extremely discolored teeth, typically from excessive fluoride, root canal treatment, or prescription drug staining
Worn or degraded teeth
Are Dental Veneers the Right Choice for Me?
Veneers are a permanent change to your teeth, so they should be considered carefully before making a decision. Your dentist will help you determine if they are the best solution for your teeth, and will go into detail about how they perform the procedure, and the limitations of veneers.
How Veneers are Applied
Dental veneers are usually applied over three visits – the first for a consultation, the second to make impressions and shape the veneers, and then finally the application.
Your dentist begins the procedure by removing a thin layer of enamel from the tooth’s surface, so that the veneer won’t appear to enlarge your teeth. Your dentist will attach the veneer to the tooth temporarily, to check its fit and to perform minor reshaping of the shell by trimming it.
After the fit is perfect, the tooth is polished and etched, and the veneer is attached with a fast-drying adhesive. You will more than likely need a follow-up visit or two a few weeks later, to make sure not additional adjustments are needed.
The Benefits of Veneers
Veneers come with a number of benefits. For one, they are long-lasting – with proper care, dental veneers can last from seven to 15 years before needing to be replaced.
Veneers are also natural-looking, mimicking the natural sheen of healthy teeth, and porcelain veneers are stain-resistant. They are relatively gentle on your gums, and provide a minimal impact to the color and shape of an affected tooth, compared to the permanent shaping required to place a crown.
Having dental veneers put in place is not reversible, however, and their color can’t be changed once in place. This is why it’s important to consult with your dentist on the best plan of action.
You may fear that the state of your smile is irreversible, but cosmetic veneers offer the chance of significant improvement. To learn more about what Dr. Lordo offers or to set up a consultation, visit us online or call 614-885-4754.