Dental veneers are custom made shells made from this tooth colored materials that facilitate covering the front surface of the tooth and these are alternately known as porcelain veneers or dental porcelain laminates. These wafer thin shells are stuck to the front of the teeth thereby changing their color, shape, size or length and resulting in an improved appearance. The objective of this procedure is either to protect the damaged tooth or improvement of the tooth aesthetics. This is analogous to placing a false fingernail over your existing fingernails.
Dental veneers are normally classified under cosmetic dentistry; this is because of the fact that it gives you a white, bright smile as well as well-aligned shapely teeth. The translucent porcelain materials available today are of good quality and provide a natural look.
Irrespective of the reasons that have caused your teeth unattractive, dental veneers are capable of solving the following cosmetic dental problems. The dental veneers are not only pleasing aesthetically but also protect the surface of the damaged tooth. In certain cases veneers replace the requirement for a dental crown thereby avoiding the need for more invasive tooth preparation.
- Dental fluorosis – can be treated by porcelain veneers.
- Genetics – it is possible that some people are born with improper inter-teeth spacing which might grow bigger with age.
- Uneven teeth – bruxism or tooth grinding as well as normal wear out of the tooth could cause uneven teeth.
- Wear and tear – As people grow old their teeth start wearing down because of which they might have chipped teeth, cracks in teeth and general uneven appearance.
- Wear out of enamel – everyone of your tooth is covered by a hard thin substance known as enamel and this gets dull, worn out and discolored over a period of time; reasons for this are natural wear-out, genetic reasons or lifestyle habits – tea, coffee, soft drink, smoking and medications.
There are two most commonly used materials for manufacturing a dental veneer; these are composite resins and porcelain veneers. You can buildup a composite veneer in the mouth by directly placing it; alternately this can be fabricated in a dental laboratory by a dental technician and bonded on the tooth by using a resin for cementing. On the other hand, a veneer made out of porcelain cannot be built in your mouth and hence fabricated outside and fitted later. Porcelain veneers are very expensive but will last longer.
If your teeth has minor chips or cracks it is better to restore them effectively with the process of bonding because this is the least expensive process. Repairing such minor problems by using composite white filling ensures that your teeth are functional and cosmetically appealing. You can bond a composite resin material for repairing the crack or chip in your tooth thereby protecting the structure of the surrounding teeth. You should opt for dental veneer under the following circumstances.
- Improving the color, shape and position of your teeth – you can choose an exact shade of porcelain in order to give your tooth the right color or to improve the stained or discolored tooth or to lighten your front upper teeth.
- Closing gaps between teeth – you might find that orthodontic braces are not suitable for small gaps; this can easily be done using veneers.
- Making a chipped tooth look like original – the porcelain covers the front of the tooth with a thicker section at the broken part.
- Out of position tooth – in case one tooth is out of position slightly you could fit veneer to hide this and make it look in alignment with others.
- Inexpensive and effective solution – in case you have cracks and chips in your teeth, bonding veneers are the most inexpensive and effective solution.
The procedure adopted is as follows:
- In order to ensure proper bonding of the veneer to the tooth, it may be necessary to remove the shiny outer enamel from the tooth. The thickness of enamel removed should not exceed the veneer thickness so that the size of tooth does not change.
- A local anesthetic could be used to prevent any discomfort although most of the time this may not be needed.
- After preparing the tooth, a mould of the tooth is taken.
- The dental technician will use this for veneer preparation.
- Color of the adjacent teeth is matched using a shade guide while manufacturing the veneer.
It takes a minimum of two visits for fixing veneers. The first visit is to prepare the tooth and to match the shade, and the second to fit it. Your dentist will place the veneer on your tooth so as to make sure that you are happy with it; then only he will bond the veneer. Bonding a veneer to your tooth will be done with a special adhesive, which holds it firmly on the tooth.
If you have teeth that are discolored mildly it is possible to get a white smile with Teeth whitening process. Cosmetic dentists as far as possible will advise people to use simpler teeth whitening process combined with simple orthodontic alignment instead of veneers. The dental veneers placement warrants the shaping and preparing all teeth in order to fit custom-designed shells. You must realize that this process will completely alter your teeth structure; hence, it is not necessary to have this treatment if you find that your natural teeth are functioning properly and also aesthetically acceptable.
If your teeth are extremely dull or terribly discolored it is advisable to go in for dental veneers. Veneers will improve as well as enhance the appearance of your smile and mouth. If you are aged, it will also enhance your aged face because your face will be supported by teeth that are properly shaped for veneer application. In addition the veneers last longer. The commitment required for veneer is much more than the commitment required for teeth whitening; however it is well worth it.