From job interviews to first dates, first impressions matter. A winning smile can help you put your best foot forward, but unsightly teeth are all too common. If you have teeth that are yellowed, stained, crooked, or simply worn down, porcelain veneers can improve your smile. Here’s what you should know.
What Are Porcelain Veneers?
Porcelain veneers are thin, color-matched shells of dental porcelain that slip over your teeth. Unlike crowns, they require only a tiny bit of healthy tooth enamel to be removed. Chemically bonded to your teeth, porcelain veneers are a strong, durable, long-lasting solution for unattractive teeth.
What Conditions Can Veneers Fix?
Porcelain veneers are a cosmetic treatment. Any existing oral health issues such as tooth decay or gum disease must be fixed before they are placed. For teeth that are healthy but do not look their best, though, porcelain veneers are a wonderful solution. Here are some of the most common reasons to get veneers:
Wear and tear: Teeth gradually wear down over time, especially if you use them as a tool or make a habit of chewing on ice or pens.
Minor breakage: Falls, minor sports injuries, and other light trauma can cause teeth to chip or crack. Deep damage must be fixed, but minor surface cracking or chipping can be covered with porcelain veneers.
Discoloration: Large fillings, certain medications, excess fluoride, root canals, and other factors can cause tooth discoloration that whitening cannot correct. Veneers are an easy way to hide this discoloration.
Misshapen or uneven teeth: Truly perfect teeth are quite rare. If your teeth are misshapen or uneven, porcelain veneers can correct their appearance.
Minor gaps or crookedness: While very badly misaligned teeth must be straightened, there is no need to go through the hassle if you have slight crookedness or gapping. Instead, you can simply cover your teeth with veneers.
Are Porcelain Veneers Permanent?
Although few dental treatments are permanent, porcelain veneers are among the longest-lasting. They can easily withstand the forces of biting and chewing, and they can last for well over a decade with proper care.
Porcelain veneers are also less prone to staining or yellowing than natural teeth. While tooth whitening must be redone regularly, excellent oral hygiene can keep your veneers looking white and healthy over time.
Are Porcelain Veneers Natural Looking?
Although some people worry that veneers will give them a fake, too-white, “game show host” smile, the reality is that porcelain veneers look highly realistic. They closely mirror the translucency and sheen of natural teeth, and they can be color-matched to your current smile.
If you want a brighter smile, consider having your teeth whitened and your veneers color-matched to your brighter shade. Just keep in mind that you will need to have the whitening repeated regularly for your natural teeth to continue to match your veneers.
We may suggest additional procedures to complement the appearance of your new veneers. Procedures such as Invisalign or teeth whitening allow us to place only the veneers that you truly need, while keeping your entire smile looking its best.