Veneers are a cosmetic procedure that aesthetically improves a patient's smile by placing a tooth-colored porcelain or ceramic shell over the natural tooth's surface to correct uneven tooth alignment, chips, cracks, discoloration, or unwanted spacing.
While dental veneers are categorized as cosmetic treatment, they also help to protect the surface of damaged teeth and may help to prevent further protective treatment from being necessary.
Veneers Can Help With
- Wear and Tear: Natural teeth will wear down over time. Older patients are more likely to have teeth with an uneven appearance or chips/cracks.
- Uneven Teeth: Teeth can sometimes become uneven as a result of grinding, or wear and tear.
- Genetics: Some patients are born with spacing between their teeth that becomes more apparent with age.
- Worn Enamel: Enamel is the thin protective coating that protects your teeth. When the tooth's enamel is worn down, dulled or discolored, it negatively impacts the patients' smile. Some patients are genetically predisposed to worn down enamel. However, enamel is most commonly affected by the consumption of heavily colored beverages such as coffee and soda, smoking, or certain medications.
First, your Northern Kentucky Dental professional will examine your oral health to ensure that any issues that need to be addressed before the placement of the veneers are properly taken care of. Your dentist will then refer to a shade chart to determine the shade best suited for you. Once your dentist has designed a customized plan specific to your needs, your treatment will begin.
A local anesthetic will be administered to ensure your comfort during the procedure. Your natural tooth will then be prepped for the veneer with a small rotating bur to precisely shape the tooth as needed for the best fit.
For cases involving direct composite veneers, your dentist will apply the desired shade of composite to your tooth and begin esthetically shaping the tooth. Each layer of composite is hardened until the final product is complete. Finally, the veneer will be polished and finished to create a natural appearance.
For cases involving porcelain veneers, your dentist will take an impression of your smile to create a mold of your teeth which will be used to fabricate the porcelain veneers. Some dental offices will send the impressions of your teeth to an outside laboratory for the veneers to be fabricated while other offices utilize CAD/CAM technology to fabricate the veneers within the one appointment.
Caring for you Veneers
Dental veneers are long lasting and durable if proper oral health is maintained. See your Northern Kentucky Dental dentist for regular examinations and cleanings to ensure the longevity of your veneers and oral health. In the event that your veneers require repair, your dentist will discuss the options available to you.
Patients with dental veneers can significantly reduce their risks for chipping and fractures by not biting on hard objects such as bones or nut shells and by not using the teeth to tear open packages etc. Your dentist will further advise you should you need to avoid eating certain foods that may damage the veneers.
Veneers are much more stain resistant that natural tooth enamel. However it is important to maintain regular brushing and flossing. Also rinsing with water, or brushing after drinking heavily colored beverages such as wine is advisable.