What are porcelain veneers?
Porcelain dental veneers, known as just veneers or laminate veneers, are thin tooth-shaped and tooth-colored shells that are cemented on your natural teeth. Porcelain veneers have been a popular smile makeover procedure in cosmetic dentistry. After having porcelains attached, your smile will transform in a remarkable way.
Porcelain dental veneers are a beautiful option that will fix the look of front teeth and improve any cosmetic imperfections of the teeth. It doesn’t take much maybe just 2 or 3 dental appointments.
What dental problems do porcelain veneers treat?
Porcelain veneers can fix variety of teeth’s problems that other treatments may seem useless, time-consuming or very costly. Porcelain veneers are used in:
- Misaligned and uneven teeth. Teeth that are irregular and are badly shaped
- Cracked and chipped teeth
- Teeth that have spaces and gaps between them
- Discolored teeth especially the deeply stained teeth that can’t be fixed by normal teeth whitening procedures
What are the benefits of porcelain dental veneers?
There is nothing better than an attractive smile with pearly white teeth in your mouth. When it comes to porcelain veneers in the path to a cosmetic look, the dramatic changes to smile are huge and feel natural. Porcelain dental veneers bring about many changes and benefits to teeth. The top benefits of porcelain dental veneers are:
• Durability and strength. Porcelain veneers can last from 10 to 15 years and even more if you take good care of them. Porcelain is a type of ceramic that can stand against corrosion, wear and tear over the years.
• No discoloration. Porcelain veneers are stain-resistant, so no discoloration occur unlike natural teeth. For this reason, your dentist asks you the tooth shade and color that matches other natural teeth. Or you may require whitening the other teeth to prevent contrast.
• Improved appearance and higher self-confidence. Porcelain veneers help anybody whose teeth are crooked, spaced and irregular, which have impacted the way their teeth look. You benefit a lasting smile, a higher self-esteem and increased self-confidence in your social communications.
Risks and downsides of porcelain dental veneers
Porcelain veneers will improve your appearance and enhances your smile, which last for years if well-cared for. There is no doubt about that But before getting veneers, you need to prepare yourself for any possible risks or you may see it as a downside like:
• The enamel on your teeth is carved. Many people may not know that they need dental work on their natural enamel to have the porcelain veneers placed on. The enamel is etched or roughened at your first appointment. This process is done for better bonding between the teeth and porcelain veneers.
• Tooth sensitivity after the first visit: it is common that you develop teeth sensitivity for a few days after the enamel on teeth is carved. Some people may get impatient. Temporary veneers are used to prevent sensitivity and decrease the exposure of enamel to irritants. Once the porcelain veneers are attached, the sensitivity is reduced and little by little disappears.
• The procedure is irreversible: once the porcelain dental veneers are attached, there is no way back. You should have them on. You wear them for as long as the porcelain veneers last. And you will need repair or even replacement if porcelain veneers get damaged or cracked.
• Higher cost. Porcelain veneers can be higher in costs compared to other veneer types such as composite veneers.
Who is not a suitable candidate for porcelain dental veneers:
Porcelain dental veneers are not a good solution for every dental condition. You need to be careful on choosing the veneers if you have the following problems:
• When teeth have deep cavities and are severely worn down, which require restorations and other treatments before porcelain placement
• If you have bite problems, meaning that the jaws are not well-aligned and upper or lower teeth fall either behind or over each other. In that case, orthodontics should be done.
• Individuals with serious gum problems like periodontitis
• Those who have bruxism (clenching teeth during sleep) or have the bad habit of tooth grinding regularly when awake.
• Individuals with poor oral hygiene that neglect the basics of dental health tasks
Porcelain veneers cost and insurance coverage
Porcelain veneers cost higher than composite veneers due to the number of factors. Materials used, lab work on the teeth, durability and aesthetics benefits are some reasons why you pay more. The average cost of porcelain dental veneers can range from $500 to $2000 per tooth. Since you may need to have both the upper and lower front teeth veneered, the price will change dramatically.
To decrease your costs, choose an insurance that covers part of the cost. Or discuss with your dentist on payment plans. You can also see if the dental insurance provider can reduce your payment under dental injury problems or dental health issues.
Choose a trusted dentist
Choosing a professional and well-trusted dentist for your veneer’s procedure is really important. No one wants a porcelain veneer that was supposed to last for years fall off several days later because of bonding carelessly.
Porcelain dental veneers are not a quick-fix and should be carried out after dental and oral health are checked. If there is a sign of oral health issue, it needs to be treated. Or if you are not a suitable candidate, give in and try to restore the function of your teeth correctly before your porcelain veneers are attached.
Having spent all that money on your porcelain veneers, you expect a desired look. You don’t need a nightmare for your budget because of series of repair treatment sessions.
How to care for my porcelain dental veneers?
It is truly necessary that you take proper care of the porcelain veneers once placed over your teeth. This way, you prevent damages and you have longer lifespan for your dental veneers. If a dentist uses anesthesia, the effect of numbing agents will wear off a few hours after the procedure. So, you may feel sensitivity and a little pain, but it subsides.
If the sensitivity doesn’t stop, better call your dentist. Dental veneer procedure generally doesn’t take as much time as other dental operations in recovery. After the veneers are attached, the edges are smoothed out to prevent irritating your gums. When you go home, you may feel more sore spots at first, but if you see the irritation continues, your dentist will work on the edges more to stop the discomfort.
Do the following aftercare tips for your porcelain veneers:
- Before making and the attachment of porcelain veneers, you may wear temporary veneers for a while. It is important to avoid hot and cold drinks or foods in order to prevent triggering teeth sensitivity.
- Avoid chewing on hard and rough foods or fruits. For example, if you are eating an apple, avoid biting hard on the whole fruit. Cut it into smaller pieces.
- No more nail biting and chewing on objects such as pen
- If you grind your teeth during sleep, get a night guard or splint. Orthodontists can help you by prescribing retainers to prevent damages to the veneers.
- Brush your teeth daily like usual. If you have porcelain veneers on, it doesn’t mean skipping oral and dental hygiene. Even better, you help out healthy fresh smile with enough fluoride intake from your toothpaste.
- Be gentle with flossing. You should floss regularly to get rid of food particles between your teeth. Generally, flossing with too much force causes bleeding. When porcelain veneers are in place, floss but with care and much attention.
FAQ around porcelain dental veneers
What happens at my porcelain veneer procedure appointment?
You can read about the step-by-step process of the porcelain procedure. You go through several oral check-ups and consultation in the early appointment. If everything is on the right track, you will be called at the first appointment, where the enamel on teeth is etched (carved).
After preparing your teeth, an impression of the teeth is taken. Then the impression is sent to the lab, where your customized veneers are made.
In the meantime, you may need to wear temporary veneers to protect your fragile teeth and reduce the sensitivity. You may wait for another week or two for the attachment of your porcelain veneers.
In the final appointment, which is usually the second or third appointment, the porcelain veneers are cemented on your teeth with special dental boding materials. Dentists use high intensity light curing (UV light) to harden the cement, which speeds up the process. After that comes the polishing and softening the extra edges.
Are porcelain veneers worth the cost?
Compared to other cosmetic dental procedures, the advantages outweigh any unusual concerns. If well attached, there is less possibility of falling off. By a simple care in eating and attention, failure is reduced. In the long run, your money is saved. Porcelain veneers are by far a revolution of smile design in cosmetic dentistry.
You achieve a lifelike smile and get the most of having a cosmetic look. Apart from cosmetic benefits, your porcelain veneers should accompany some simple tips to prevent damages or repair.
Always look for pros and cons of porcelain veneers depending on the condition you have. Maybe it doesn’t work in your case and better be aware of the alternatives. If you are a suitable candidate and have the qualifications for getting veneers, you don’t need to have any fears.
Do porcelain veneers ruin the teeth?
No porcelain doesn’t ruin the teeth. The idea that healthy enamel should be removed to attach the veneers may seem unacceptable to you. Dentists shield that removed area with bonding cements adaptable to human teeth.
The process is invasive since part of the enamel is removed, but you can discuss with your dentist on the amount of enamel removal that meets your needs.
What are the alternatives for porcelain veneers?
Getting a dental implant, having a crown made and even bridges or dentures are common alternatives when teeth are severely worn down and require much dental work. If you are looking for a non-invasive and a quick-to-do solution, DIY veneers can save your smile publicly and boost your confidence.