Cosmetic dentistry continues to grow, and as it does, more and more patients are getting the smile they’ve always wanted. Whether genetics or bad oral hygiene have affected the aesthetics of your smile, porcelain veneers from Silverstone Family Dental may be able to help. Before you stop by our office, however, check out these four questions to determine if porcelain veneers are the right choice for you.
What Are Porcelain Veneers?
Porcelain veneers are thin pieces of porcelain that are designed to look like the front surface of your front teeth. Before they are placed, the dentist will remove the tooth’s enamel, so the veneer will fit without making your teeth look bulky. The veneer, in place of the removed enamel, protects the front of the tooth from decay, sensitivity, etc.
These veneers are made from porcelain because porcelain mimics the natural look of teeth well. Not only can porcelain be colored to match various shades of white and off-white, but it also has the same texture and translucency as natural tooth tissue. Therefore, after your veneers are complete, people won’t be able to tell they aren’t your real teeth.
Do You Have Cosmetic Concerns You Want to Correct?
Porcelain veneers correct a wide variety of cosmetic concerns. For starters, they can be used to hide stains. While tooth-whitening may be your first choice for whiter teeth, some stains are resistant to the process. For example, if you have a discolored tooth from trauma, the dentin is likely affected, which may not be whitened. However, any stain can be covered by a veneer, making the tooth look white.
Teeth can also be prone to stains if you have a lot of cracks in the enamel, so bleaching may work, but the stains quickly return. If you have chips or cracks, veneers hide and protect them better than fillings, and veneers can correct mild gaps and uneven teeth.
Are Your Teeth Relatively Healthy?
If your teeth aren’t as beautiful as you’d like because of poor oral hygiene, veneers may not be a good choice. Because the veneer only covers the front of the tooth, they don’t strengthen teeth. In fact, they may actually weaken teeth, especially if you have a lot of decay or big fillings.
In this scenario, porcelain crowns may be the better choice as they cover the tooth fully, so they can be used on front and back teeth. Porcelain crowns have the same cosmetic advantages as porcelain veneers, but they also strengthen teeth. Of course, more enamel must be removed for dental crowns to fit.
Your gums should be healthy too before getting veneers, so if you have gum disease, you’ll need to start seeking treatment first.
Can You Afford Veneers and Replacement Veneers?
Veneers are not the most expensive option for a more attractive smile, but they aren’t cheap. Porcelain veneers are less expensive than porcelain crowns, but usually more expensive than dental bonding. Because veneers are considered cosmetic-only, they are also not usually covered by any dental insurance.
Even if you can afford the first set of veneers, you need to consider the cost of replacement veneers. Like crowns, veneers don’t last forever, so you’ll need to have them replaced to continue protecting your teeth and making your smile look great. If the veneer does fail or fall off, and you don’t replace it, the tooth is likely to decay, become infected, be sensitive, etc.
Just because you don’t have the smile you want doesn’t mean you can’t achieve it. Porcelain veneers correct many cosmetic concerns, making them a great choice if you have healthy teeth but want to improve the appearance of your front teeth. For more information about dental veneers or to schedule a consultation, contact our office today.