Dental veneers are custom-made shells made of different materials designed to be glued to the front of the teeth. They are wafer-thin and are the same color as the patient’s natural teeth. Veneers are designed to change the length, shape, size or color of the teeth to which they are bonded. They can be made of porcelain or a resin composite.
Porcelain veneers tend to look more natural, for they reflect light the way natural teeth do. They are also highly stain resistant. Veneers made from resin composites, on the other hand, can be thinner than porcelain veneers and therefore require removing less of the surface from the original tooth.
Why Do People Get Veneers?
Porcelain veneers are often used to fix the following problems:
• Chipped or broken teeth
• Discolored teeth
• Teeth that have become worn down
• Irregularly shaped, misaligned or uneven teeth
• Large gaps between teeth
What’s Involved in Getting a Veneer?
Our cosmetic dentist will first take X-rays and impressions of the patient’s teeth. He will trim about half a millimeter from the front of the tooth to provide space for the veneer. After shaving down the tooth, the dentist will make an impression of it to send to a dental lab that will make the veneer. The dentist may cover the tooth with a temporary veneer.
It will take the lab a week or two to make the veneer. When the dentist receives the veneer, he will check the fit, and will trim the veneer if necessary. When he is satisfied the veneer fits, he will permanently bond it to the patient’s tooth. The dentist may schedule a follow-up appointment a couple of weeks later to see how well the veneer is working. Dental veneers usually last about seven to twenty years.
What Kind of Care Do Porcelain Veneers Need?
Since the remaining tooth is still susceptible to decay, the patient still needs to practice good dental hygiene. They should brush and floss the veneers just like the natural teeth. Biting or chewing on hard things can make the veneers chip or crack. The patient should, therefore, avoid chewing ice or pencils, and they should avoid hard foods, like candy apples. Similarly, they should not open nuts or other things with their teeth.
Who is a Good Candidate for Veneers?
Porcelain veneers work best for people with good dental health and who practice good oral hygiene. During a consultation at the dental practice of Dr. Samuel F. Jirik, DDS in Cabot, our talented cosmetic dentist can help you determine if porcelain veneers can benefit you. Dr. Jirik proudly serves the Little Rock and surrounding areas. Contact us today to schedule your appointment.