Dental veneers are a cosmetic shell designed to improve the appearance of your teeth. Also known as porcelain veneers or dental porcelain laminates, they are very thin and custom-made to fit over the front of your teeth. To hold them in place, veneers are bonded to your teeth in order to improve their shape, size, length, or color.
Here at My Family Dentistry, we only do porcelain veneers. This is because they’re more durable, resemble natural teeth, and are more cost-effective over time than resin composite veneers. However, it’s still a good idea to understand resin veneers in order to understand why we prefer porcelain.
To do this, we’ll look at:
- Who is a good candidate for veneers?
- The two types of dental veneers
- What to expect during the dental veneers procedure
The beauty of veneers is in their customization and versatility. For instance, you can get a set of six or eight in order to give yourself a bright, even smile that you can be proud of. On the other hand, you can opt for a single veneer to cover up an embarrassing chipped tooth that’s causing you to hide your beautiful smile.
Who is a good candidate for veneers?
Dental veneers are ideal for people who have damaged teeth or want a whiter smile. Imperfections can be due to teeth that are chipped, worn down, or discolored due to a root canal treatment. Those with misaligned teeth or with gaps may also consider veneers as a solution.
Good candidates for veneers will also have strong, healthy teeth with plenty of enamel. This means those experiencing tooth decay, gum disease, fractures, or who have had large fillings may not qualify. Enamel is an important factor since your dentist will remove some of it in order to make room for the veneers.
The Two Types of Dental Veneers
Dental veneers come in two main types: porcelain and resin composites. Both are affixed to the outer surface of your teeth and designed to match or improve the color and overall look of your original teeth.
But there are important differences between the two. To better understand these differences, we’ll break porcelain and resin veneers down based on:
- Overall look
This can help you have a better understanding of what to expect from different types of veneers and choose which is best for you!
Resin composites may be ideal if time is an important factor for you. Your dental team will be able to make your composite veneers during your visit. During that time they can match the shade of the resin to your teeth, cure, and polish the veneers enabling you to walk out with a brand new smile!
Expect porcelain veneers to require two visits, not including your initial consultation. During that time, your teeth will be prepped for the veneers, molds will be taken and sent to a lab, and you’ll be provided with temporary veneers until you receive your permanent ones. Your permanent veneers will be bonded during your second visit.
How long do veneers last? Porcelain veneers usually last 10-15 years while composites only last 4-8. Keep in mind that this will also depend on the health of your original teeth. Resin veneers are more likely to chip, but they’re also easier to repair. Porcelain veneers will have to be completely replaced if damaged.
Thanks to its translucent look, porcelain provides a much closer look to real teeth than resin composites. They’re also stain-resistant. Resin composites will still give you the look you’re looking for. However, they won’t reflect light the same way porcelain veneers do, which is what gives them their more toothlike look.
Porcelain veneers are more expensive on the front end due to the work that goes into them, but their durability actually makes them the much cheaper option over time. Resin composites are much less costly and time-consuming to make, but their tendency to chip requires repairs that can cost more over time.
What to Expect During the Dental Veneers Procedure
The dental veneers procedure you get will depend on the type of veneers you choose. Your choice will influence the amount of time you spend in the dentist chair, how long it takes to make the veneer, as well as the type and amount of materials required for the procedure.
On your first dental visit for porcelain veneers, your dentist will start by removing a layer of enamel from the tooth or teeth that will get veneers. This will make room for the veneer which will replace the removed layer. Your dentist will then make a mold of the teeth receiving veneers, as well as determine a shade that will compliment your smile.
Once your first dental visit is completed, the molds will be sent to a dental lab to create veneers that are custom-fitted for your teeth. This will take some time until your next visit. Your dentist will provide you with temporary veneers to last you until then.
During your next visit, your dentist will double-check to make sure the veneers fit your teeth properly. They will make any necessary adjustments and clean them. Once that’s done, the veneers will be bonded to your teeth. This will conclude the application procedure, but any other adjustments or changes will require further dental office visits.
Resin Composite Veneers
While less enamel is usually removed for composite veneers, your dentist will still need to do some reshaping. Once that’s finished, your dentist will form the composite material using a shade that works best for you. They will then use a special light to harden the material and bond it to your teeth. Finally, your dentist will smooth and polish the veneers for a natural look.
Veneers are a great choice for those looking to brighten their smile. Whether it’s to fix a chipped tooth or discoloration from a root canal, veneers are the perfect solution for many people. Keep in mind that we only do porcelain veneers here at My Family Dentistry. They’re more durable, have the look of natural teeth, and are cheaper over time than resin veneers.