Porcelain veneers are ideal for correcting a variety of cosmetic flaws by changing the color, length, or overall shape of your teeth. Veneers are designed to cover the front facade of a tooth, similar to a shell or mask. Veneers are extremely durable and offer a natural look that most mistake for actual teeth.
Putting veneers over your teeth involves first removing a thin layer of enamel. The veneers are then custom-cut to best fit your mouth and are permanently bonded to your existing teeth with a safe, high-tech polymer resin.
Porcelain veneers are used by people of all ages to correct:
- Crooked teeth or eliminate gaps between teeth
- Discolored teeth caused by root canal treatment, excess fluoride usage, massive resin filings, or tetracycline stains
- Uneven or oddly shaped teeth that show holes, craters, or crevices
- Worn down teeth from certain drug usage or damaged by friction, such as with teeth grinding
- If you are interested in being outfitted with porcelain veneers, note that the process
During your initial visit, your dentist will make a full tooth diagnosis and outline a plan for your treatment. It is important for you and your dentist to determine that this is the best dental plan for you. Be open and honest about your expectations of the procedure and what your goals are. In this first visit, you may have some x-rays taken of your teeth and smile to get a better understanding of your dental needs.
Your second visit is all about preparing your teeth for the veneers. You may or may not be given an anesthetic, depending upon your personal preferences and suggestion by the dentist, and then the dentist will remove about .5 mm of tooth enamel from the surface of each tooth undergoing treatment. Once this is done, a model or impression of your mouth will be created to ensure upcoming veneers will fit appropriately and comfortably. It’ll be about a 7 to 14-day wait for the laboratory to translate these molds into physical veneers. You may opt to invest in temporary veneers during this waiting period.
On your third visit, the final installation takes place. This begins with a cold verification and any color adjustments you want to get a perfect, matching smile. The dentist will then polish, etch, and thoroughly clean your teeth so that the new veneers can securely bond to their surface. Your dentist will then use specialty tools and a high-tech polymer resin to carefully put each veneer into place. Once fitted against your natural teeth, a beam of light is used to further activate the bonding chemicals and allow the veneers to harden into place.
And that’s it! Your dentist will likely schedule you for a follow-up visit within a month or two to ensure there were no issues with bonding and to answer any questions you might have. But taken good care of, porcelain veneers will flawlessly look, act, and feel like natural teeth for decades to come.