What Are Dental Veneers?

If you want to improve your smile, one option available to you is dental veneers. This popular cosmetic dental treatment was once thought to be only available to the rich and famous, but advances in dental technology and an increase in interest mean that this treatment is more accessible than ever before.

If you’re curious about dental veneers, read on. In this guide, we’re exploring the role of dental veneers in modern dentistry, what they can achieve, what makes you a good candidate and the potential downsides of this treatment.

What are dental veneers?

Dental veneers are thin shells of porcelain that fit on the front of your existing teeth. They are designed to improve the appearance of your smile, allowing you to make it look whiter, straighter and more symmetrical without going through multiple treatments. Veneers can replace the need for treatments such as orthodontics, teeth whitening and individual crowns.

A veneer will typically cover the top front teeth that are visible when you smile. This allows you to achieve a stunning makeover in just a few trips to the dentist.

Why would you want veneers

Why would you want veneers?

Veneers are a common cosmetic dentistry procedure that can help to improve the appearance of your smile. Rather than using multiple treatments to address various aesthetic concerns, you can address everything at once with a veneer.

Veneers were once more popular with older patients who were looking for a way to erase the signs of ageing that were visible in their smiles. However, many younger patients are now turning to veneers, thanks to the procedure being popularised by many celebrities and social media influencers.

Veneers can help to improve the appearance of your teeth, including address the following cosmetic flaws:

  • Discolouration that cannot be addressed with teeth whitening

  • Crooked teeth

  • Chipped or cracked teeth

  • Thinning enamel

  • Asymmetrical smiles

What are veneers made from

What are veneers made from?

The most popular material for veneers is porcelain. This looks very similar to natural tooth material, resulting in a very natural-looking finish. Porcelain offers the same transparency and shine as natural tooth material.

You could also opt for composite veneers, which are applied in a very different way. The composite resin is applied to the tooth and then shaped before being cured with UV light. This is a cost-effective alternative to porcelain veneers, but it does have some limitations. The most important thing to remember is that composite veneers don’t have the same natural appearance as porcelain veneers.

How are veneers placed?

The first step in placing porcelain veneers is to take impressions or scans of the teeth that will be covered. The new smile is then designed using 3D rendering technology. The veneer is then produced by a specialist lab and delivered to your dentist. A small amount of the tooth surface needs to be removed to make space for the veneer. The veneer is then permanently cemented in place using a special dental adhesive.

For composite veneers, the resin is applied directly to the teeth or injected into a mould that fits over the teeth. A UV light then hardens the material and it can be polished and adjusted as required.

Wearers can expect to experience some increased tooth sensitivity following the treatment as they get used to wearing the new dental appliance. This should quickly pass as your teeth adjust to the presence of the veneer.

What are the disadvantages of veneers

What are the disadvantages of veneers?

One of the most common disadvantages of veneers is simply due to patients choosing to travel for cheap veneers overseas. Known as “Turkey teeth”, these veneers are usually constructed of multiple individual crowns which require more preparation of the tooth surface. As a result, it’s far more common to face issues with pain and increased sensitivity after treatment. By choosing a reputable dentist for your veneers, you can ensure that your teeth face minimal preparation and they are not damaged unnecessarily.

Another disadvantage of veneers is that this treatment is permanent, but may need to be replaced or repaired over the years. This means that you will always need to wear a veneer as the underlying tooth structure will need to be protected. However, since a veneer will typically last for around 10-15 years, you need to consider the lifetime cost of upkeep.

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