Porcelain veneers are one of the most natural-looking and hassle-free solutions to a number of cosmetic dental issues, including misshapen teeth, stained teeth, chipped teeth, and gaps between teeth.
This dental procedure has a long history, and although it was exclusively used by celebrities in the past, now everyone has the opportunity to receive porcelain veneers to achieve a sparkling white smile.
We have all the details on the procedure, how porcelain veneers work and whether you are a good candidate or not.
What is the time frame for this procedure?
This process takes approximately two to three visits over a span of about two to three weeks.
What cosmetic issues can porcelain veneers improve?
There are quite a few cosmetic issues that this procedure can help you mask, including the following:
- Porcelain veneers can cover discoloration and deep stains that otherwise cannot be fixed by whitening.
- They can improve the appearance of worn down teeth. Depending on our lifestyle, genetics, and hygiene, we all experience enamel damage to some degree, but veneers can help remedy the situation.
- Chipped teeth are quite common, but this problem can easily be solved with porcelain veneers because they cover up the chipped area.
- Gaps between teeth can be masked by porcelain veneers.
- Misaligned teeth can look perfectly straight with the help of porcelain veneers, and on top of an improved look, they can also fix your bite.
There are a few dental issues that cannot be fixed by porcelain veneers. If you are experiencing tooth decay or gum disease, porcelain veneers are not the proper solution for you.
What makes you a good candidate for porcelain veneers?
There are certain health issues and cosmetic problems that porcelain veneers cannot solve. If you have a deep bite or an underbite, you will still need orthodontic treatment before you can receive porcelain veneers.
Here’s what makes someone a good candidate for porcelain veneers:
- Having healthy gums (no gum disease) and strong teeth with no signs of inadequate enamel on the surface of the tooth.
- You do not grind your teeth.
- Your main cosmetic concerns are related to stains, discolorations, gaps between teeth, misalignments, or chipped teeth.
However, you will need to schedule a consultation with an experienced dental professional to find out if you are a good candidate for porcelain veneers. Porcelain veneers are not reversible, so you need to be absolutely sure you want to go through with the procedure.
What does the procedure look like?
Many people fear going to the dentist. Fortunately, this procedure is pain-free, as numbing medication is used to completely eliminate any pain during the procedure.
For this procedure, you will need to make at least three trips to the dentist. Keep in mind that it is up to you to choose how many teeth you want veneers on. You are not required to have veneers on all of your teeth. Many patients elect to have the procedure completed only on teeth that are visible.
Find out if you are a candidate for porcelain veneers
During your first consultation, you will discuss your goals with your dentist. They will ask you what cosmetic issues concern you the most.
You will also be asked a few questions about your lifestyle. Your dentist may ask whether you grind your teeth.
During this visit, you will be also examined for gum disease and tooth decay. Often times, x-rays are used to get a better idea of how healthy your teeth are before moving forward.
How your teeth are prepared for the procedure
During your second visit, your teeth will be prepared for the procedure. To prepare your teeth for porcelain veneers, 1 to 2 millimeters of enamel will be removed from the surface of your teeth. The enamel removed will be equal to the thickness of the porcelain veneers applied to ensure that the veneers will look natural. You will receive temporary veneers after the enamel has been removed from your teeth.
During the procedure, a local anesthetic will be used to make the procedure painless. Afterwards, you may need to utilize painkillers to combat any teeth sensitivity you experience.
Impressions of your teeth will be taken in order to create the porcelain veneers. Within 2-4 weeks, your dentist will receive fully customized veneers that will fit perfectly in your mouth.
The Final Visit
During your third visit, the bonding process will begin. Before this happens, you will be asked if the veneers match your choice of color and if they fit perfectly in your mouth. Based on your wishes, the veneers can be trimmed and the color of your veneers can be changed on the spot until you are happy with the final result.
Next, your teeth will be cleaned and polished, a procedure that will make the bonding stronger. A special cement will be placed on your veneers and then, placed on your teeth. The chemicals in the cement are activated by a light beam, and in a matter of seconds, the cement will begin to harden.
In the final stage, you and your dentist will evaluate your look and determine if any changes need to be made.
A few weeks after your procedure, you may be asked to come in for a check-up so your veneers can be re-examined. You dentist will also examine your gums to check how they are responding to the pressure.
The Benefits of Porcelain Veneers
There are many benefits to choosing porcelain veneers, including convenience and safety.
Several practical ways porcelain veneers may improve your life are:
- Unlike teeth whitening, which can damage your enamel and requires multiple treatments, porcelain veneers make your teeth resistant to stains.
- The color of veneers can be customized to match the natural color of your teeth, and you have complete control over what the final result looks like.
- Wearing veneers does not cause discomfort.
- You do not have to remove your teeth.
- They last for around 20 years as long as you do not grind your teeth, which can damage the porcelain.
Typically, if you have porcelain veneers, you do not have to make big compromises when it comes to what you eat or drink.
However, you should avoid using a mouthwash that is high in alcohol because it can soften the cement used to bond the porcelain to your teeth.
Hard candies and nuts can be eaten, but you should chew them with your back teeth, as this will prolong the life of your veneers. You should keep in mind that while porcelain is a very strong material, it is not as strong as your natural teeth.
Make sure you choose a softer toothbrush to preserve the shine and the integrity of your porcelain veneers.
Porcelain veneers are one of the safest cosmetic procedures, as the first porcelain veneers were used in the 1930s and later, caught the attention of celebrities.
If you want a sparkling, white smile and teeth with a perfect shape, porcelain veneers may be a great option for you, especially since the procedure lasts for decades with minimal upkeep.
Schedule a consultation with us today to find out if you are a candidate for porcelain veneers.