A perfect smile is a priceless attribute when it comes to inspiring self-confidence. For individuals suffering from abnormally shaped or damaged teeth, it can be challenging to show off a smile you’re not proud of. In some cases, procedures such as dental implants can be too severe to correct issues related to changing the appearance of our teeth. Fortunately, porcelain veneers serve as an excellent restoration option for improving the aesthetics of smiles, with minimal preparation before placement.
Porcelain Veneer Overview
Porcelain veneers serve as a virtually pain-free alternative to surgical and drastic dental treatments. Veneers are composed of porcelain and created extremely thin to bond to the surface of the tooth without causing a bulky appearance. Each veneer is designed, tinted, and shaped by the patients desired look. Without removing or alternating the placement of teeth, veneers create a brand new smile instantly, with a quick recovery.
Benefits of Choosing Porcelain Veneers
Over the years, our teeth can undertake a great deal of wear and tear, causing unappealing damage and stains. In some cases, individuals are born with teeth that grow out of place or uneven, creating feelings of embarrassment in social situations.
Porcelain veneers are excellent in correcting these troublesome concerns and more, including:
- Spaces and gaps
- Discoloration and staining
- Wear and tear
- Cracks and chips
- Abnormally shaped teeth
- Teeth out of alignment
- Middle crooked teeth (in place of some orthodontic treatment)
In addition to fixing these common issues, porcelain veneers are bonded to the surface of the tooth. By cementing to the natural teeth, patients will not have to endure a lengthy recovery process from extracted or surgically placed restoration options that can take weeks to heal fully.
The Process of Porcelain Veneers
Compared to several other dental procedures, the process of placing porcelain veneers can be quick and straightforward, finalizing the entire process in only three visits.
The initial visit for you porcelain veneer treatment will be focused on creating a treatment plan with your dentist. During this appointment, your provider will ensure that veneers are appropriate for your smile goals by performing a comprehensive evaluation of your entire mouth. This assessment will include looking for signs of decay, infection, or oral cancer, to rule out any other dental treatments that may be necessary to benefit the overall health of the oral cavity. After determining your mouth is healthy enough to undergo the porcelain veneers, your dentist will gather personal information necessary to learn more about the smile you are looking to achieve. Understating your goals and personality will help your provider determine the best treatment plan for your smile to ensure it becomes a personal asset you are proud of.
The focus of your next appointment will be to prepare your teeth to accept the porcelain veneers. The two significant steps needed to prepare the teeth include taking dental impressions and creating trial veneers: Dental Impressions: Your provider will make dental impressions of your teeth to ensure accurately fitting veneers. First, a small amount of enamel must be shaved from the surface of the teeth for successful bonding. When complete, dental impressions will be taken to create the trial veneers before finalizing the porcelain design. Trial Veneers: Taking into consideration the size, shape, and tint desired, your provider will create a trial set of veneers. By creating this mock-up, patients can make adjustments to the design and fit before final bonding. Your dentist will send you home with the trial veneers to wear while your final set is being created to begin accustoming your mouth to the change.
Once the trial veneers have been approved, your final porcelain veneers will go into production. When they are completed, you will return to the office for your final bonding. Your dentist will fit the veneers to your teeth, performing any adjustments needed before cementing them to the surface of your teeth. Modifications can also be made after the bonding for any issues with shaping or fit.
Post-Care Instructions for Porcelain Veneers
Porcelain veneers are known for being a virtually pain-free application. However, some patients may experience tooth sensitivity from the bonding process. This natural due to the removal of enamel and addition of a foreign object on the surface of your teeth. With permission from your dentist, over the counter products such as rinses and pastes can be used to reduce tooth sensitivity, which should subside within a few weeks. If patients continue to experience feelings of tooth sensitivity after a few weeks, it’s important to contact your dental provider for a check-up visit.
After your teeth become accustomed to the veneers, you are free to enjoy your brand new smile. Porcelain veneers are made extremely durable and function much like naturally healthy teeth. But just like your natural teeth, veneers can wear, so protecting them from unnecessary stress is essential in ensuring a long-lasting smile. For patients who tend to grind or clench during sleep, discuss wearing a night guard with your dental provider during your consultation appointment. Tobacco use and drinking liquids are known for staining teeth are also discouraged to maintain the whiteness of your new smile.
Perfect Candidates for Porcelain Veneers
Porcelain veneers have helped countless individuals regain the confidence in their smile. If you have considered porcelain veneers in the past, here are some high qualifying factors that would make you an excellent candidate for this life-changing procedure:
- Dissatisfaction with smile appearance
- No active decay or cavities
- Healthy gums and jawbones
- Free of oral cancer
- Have mildly crooked teeth that do not require orthodontics
Cost of Porcelain Veneers
The cost of porcelain veneers will always depend on your type of treatment. Some dental insurances will not cover cosmetic dental procedures. However, you should always contact your insurance company to see what kind of benefits you have in case they are willing to help out. Your perfect smile is not far out of reach with porcelain veneers. Discussing your options with your dental provider at your next annual check is a great place to begin achieving your goal of a beautiful smile.