Veneers – Solutions for Tooth Imperfections
Cosmetic dentists often use dental veneers for patients who want to beautify their smiles. Professionals consider dental veneer placement a cosmetic procedure because it is elective rather than medically necessary. Still, it can also protect teeth from damage.
What Are Dental Veneers?
Dental veneers are made from tooth-colored materials and are used to hide damage, severe discoloration, and misshapen teeth. The various resins used to make dental veneers are custom-made before being affixed to the teeth's surface so that they match the rest of a patient's mouth perfectly. Because dental veneers' benefits are primarily cosmetic, dental professionals recommend veneers for restructuring patients' front teeth rather than molars. For molars, inlays and onlays are more cost-effective.
How Do Dental Veneers Work?
The process of fitting patients for dental veneers is a simple one. A dental professional will start by scheduling an initial consultation. During this consultation, they will examine and evaluate the patient's teeth to ensure dental veneers are the most appropriate option.
Common reasons to get dental veneers include:
- Cracked or chipped teeth
- Deep or difficult-to-remove stains
- Teeth that are shorter than others in the surrounding area
- Sharp edges and rough spots
Regardless of these situations, the process will be essentially the same. After the initial consultation, the patient will return for a second visit. In the intervening time, the dentist will custom-form the veneer.
At the start of the placement visit, the dental professional will thoroughly clean the patient's oral cavity to ensure that the affected tooth and the surrounding areas are free of debris. Following the thorough cleaning, the dental professional will etch its surface by shaving down the enamel so they can bond the dental veneer more thoroughly to the tooth.
The dentist will apply a specialized composite bonding agent to the tooth to ensure that the dental veneer sets, then place and fit it appropriately. If there is excess or hangover, the dental professional will remove the extra material before sending the patient home.
Five Common Types of Dental Veneers
There are five dental veneers for teeth, each of which has pros and cons. Therefore, dentists do not generally consider any of these options the best for all situations. Instead, they evaluate the patient's needs and preferences and then make a recommendation based on which option will be the best fit given the unique situation.
1. Porcelain Veneers
Porcelain is the most common material used for fabricating dental veneers. This tooth-colored material effectively mimics the natural appearance of patients' teeth and can withstand biting pressure. Because porcelain is biocompatible, this type of dental veneer is unlikely to cause allergic reactions. The primary disadvantage of porcelain veneers is that they tend to be expensive.
2. Composite Veneers
The resin used to make composite veneers consists of a mix of organic and inorganic substances. The organic materials used for composite veneers include resin, an initiator, and a coupler. Dental veneer manufacturers use the inorganic material as a filler. In most cases, composite veneers do not irritate the surrounding gums. Furthermore, they are less expensive than porcelain veneers, less durable, and more prone to discoloration.
Lumineers are thin yet sturdy, so they can be applied using less preparation. Composed of layers of porcelain laminate material, lumineers look and feel natural. Some dentists recommend lumineers because they require only minimal tooth preparation. Still, they are also more likely to detach from the tooth. Lumineers can also allow dark spots beneath to show through since they are not very thick.
4. Palatal Veneers
Also referred to as lingual veneers, palatal veneers manufacturers design these custom-built veneers to restore the lingual surface of a patient's front teeth. Manufacturers make palatal veneers from the same materials as regular veneers. Still, dental professionals apply them to the back of the teeth instead of the front.
5. Removable Veneers
Removable veneers are temporary, snap-on dental prostheses made from flexible resin. Dental professionals usually use removable veneers only for short periods while dentists fabricate permanent veneers.
Schedule a Consultation
Many people don't realize how many options they have to improve their smile. For example, while many people choose teeth whitening or composite bonding to correct a common problem like discoloration or chipped teeth, other options are also very effective. Dental veneers are one such option. They are thin pieces of porcelain bonded to your teeth to correct the color, shape, and alignment of your teeth. Schedule an appointment with a cosmetic dentist to discuss dental veneer options and how they can hide tooth imperfections.
Brought To You By: Garland K. Davis, DDS
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