If your front teeth are stained, chipped, or misaligned, porcelain veneers will give you a good life-like appearance with minimum tooth adjustment.
What are veneers?
A veneer is a thin piece of porcelain attached to the front of the tooth, replacing the original tooth enamel. Porcelain is the material of choice as it can improve the colour, shape and position of teeth. Porcelain veneers are commonly used when the original tooth has developed poor colour, shape and contours. Veneers are also used to improve fractured teeth and to get rid of gaps between teeth. For some people, superficial stains do not respond to tooth whitening. In these situations, a porcelain veneer may be considered.
How are veneers fitted?
Some of the outer enamel is removed to ensure that the veneer can be bonded permanently in place. The amount of enamel removed is minimal, and will be the same thickness as the veneer to be fitted. This ensures the tooth stays the same size. Once the tooth has been prepared, an impression of your tooth is taken. This is then used to make the veneer. The colour of the surrounding teeth is matched to ensure that the veneer looks natural.
The benefits of veneers
Veneers are custom made for each individual, so it is virtually impossible to tell the difference between a veneer and a natural tooth. Also, unlike natural teeth, veneers resist coffee, tea and cigarette stains. With veneers, as opposed to crowns, your natural teeth remain largely intact. A minimal amount of your tooth is altered to fit the veneer. For teeth that resist whitening, veneers can make even the darkest of teeth appear bright white. We may also recommend veneers to fix minor twists, overlaps and small gaps in the teeth.
Maintaining porcelain veneers is simple. Treat them as you would your original teeth, with regular brushing and flossing. You should return for regular professional maintenance because porcelain veneers should be polished with a specially formulated, non-abrasive paste.
How long will a veneer last?
Veneers should last for many years, but they can chip or break just like your own teeth can. Small chips can be repaired, or a new veneer fitted if necessary.