Porcelain veneers, or dental veneers, are one of the most popular treatments that we get asked about when people are looking for a cosmetic dentist. Veneers are so popular, because of how quickly and easily they can be placed over the teeth to change the color, shape or the alignment of a smile. In as little as two visits, porcelain veneers can completely transform your smile.
If you woke up one day and looked in the mirror to discover that somehow your smile looked “old and tired” you are not alone. A lifetime of wear and tear can have that effect on your teeth. By placing porcelain veneers over the “old and tired” looking teeth, you can turn back the hands of time by ten to twenty years and make your smile look as “youthful and bright” as you feel on the inside. Just have a look at our Smile Showcase.
"A perfect smile with porcelain veneers"
If you see crooked or misaligned teeth when you smile, you might think of traditional orthodontics (metal braces) as the way to improve your appearance. While traditional orthodontic treatment certainly has its place, porcelain veneers can also be used to improve the alignment of teeth. By properly shaping the teeth first, porcelain dental veneers can accomplish in two weeks what takes metal braces two years. Another advantage of a porcelain veneer "Instant Makeover" is that you don't have to wear any retainers when you are finished.
Whiten and Brighten: Tooth whitening products are advertised everywhere these days. While almost all teeth-whitening products do work, not all teeth will whiten (at least they might not all whiten as much as you might like). When this is the case, dental veneers are an excellent alternative to consider because the porcelain can be fabricated to match any shade of white that you would like your smile to become.
Re-Shape and Re-Sculpture:
Correct proportions of your teeth are very, very important. However, like Michael Jordan, many people are born missing one of their front teeth which can disrupt these very important proportions and leave a smile looking unbalanced and out of harmony. Porcelain dental veneers are a wonderful alternative to consider if you are hoping to reshape and enhance the proportions of your smile.
Full Mouth Rehabilitation:
When the situation is appropriate, simultaneous placement of porcelain veneers on all of your teeth can efficiently and effectively achieve a smile that will last a lifetime. Because there are so many factors to carefully consider before beginning a full mouth rehabilitation, it is especially important to find a dentist with extensive experience. I recommend that you first come to our office for a free consultation so that we can carefully review your goals.
Porcelain Dental Veneers FAQ:
Q. Exactly what is a porcelain veneer?
A. Porcelain Veneers are a very thin (usually not less than 0.2mm in thickness) piece of highly artistic dental ceramic that is placed over the tooth to permanently change the size, shape or position of the underlying tooth.
Q. Does any part of my natural tooth have to be removed in order to place porcelain veneers on my teeth?
A. In most cases the answer is yes. Because we want the final appearance of the veneer to look completely natural we usually do need to remove some of the existing tooth structure out of the way first so the veneer does not look to thick or large. While we always minimize the amount we remove, in some cases as much as 30% of a natural tooth may need to be removed in order to achieve your goals.
Q. Do dental veneers make my teeth weaker?
A. Current studies suggest that a tooth with a modern veneer bonded in place has approximately 97% the strength of a natural non-veneered tooth (with a margin of error of plus or minus 4%). What this means is that when a veneer is properly cemented in place, it is very difficult to accurately measure any statistically significant difference between a veneered tooth and an unaltered natural tooth. So while the answer to this question is essentially "no, veneers do not make your teeth weaker", I still recommend that patients be careful and not try to open any bottle caps with their new teeth.
Q. How long do dental veneers last?
A. We typically expect that dental veneers will last in the range of twenty to thirty years. Vigilant home care and regular check-up appointments can help further extend the life of your new smile.
Q.What happens in twenty to thirty years?
A.Eventually, all of the veneers may need to be replaced. This is not necessarily the case though. Many patients can expect to have their new smile last a lifetime, which means that many veneers will never need to be replaced at all.
Q.What is involved in the process and how long does it take?
A.The process of transforming your smile usually takes between four to six weeks between your initial consultation and completion of your new smile. I usually spend about a week re-sculpting your new smile on a set of plaster models of your existing teeth before we make any permanent changes. The appointment when we shape your teeth to fit the veneers usually takes between two to three hours. After this appointment you will leave with a set of temporary veneers that match the contours of the new re-sculpted smile that we have approved together. I always ask that you wear your new smile (in temporary form) for a minimum of one week before we commit to the final shape and contours. I want to make sure that your new veneers exactly meet your expectations. After a quick follow-up visit to make any necessary adjustments to shape, length or proportion, I will take a mold of the temporary veneers so my ceramist may duplicate them exactly. It usually takes between two to four weeks until the final visit when we will cement the permanent veneers to your teeth.