Are you unhappy with your smile? If you have chipped, discolored, or uneven teeth, our team wants to help you find a solution. City Square Dental Center offers veneers to Vancouver patients who seek whiter, brighter, or straighter teeth.
What Are Veneers?
Veneers are thin porcelain shells fitted to the front of your teeth. They are created specifically to match your tooth color. Veneers offer two advantages: protection and aesthetic improvement. Not only do veneers protect a tooth’s surface from potential damage, they help improve the overall look and function of any smile.
How Do You Care for Veneers?
Although you treat veneers like real teeth, take these additional steps to ensure your veneers stay in pristine condition:
- Brush and floss twice a day (or after every meal). Use a soft-bristle toothbrush and brush your teeth in a circular motion. Floss between each tooth to ensure plaque doesn’t build up.
- Avoid foods and beverages that stain. Colored beverages and foods may stain the cement used to keep your porcelain veneers in place. Avoid coffee, tea, wine, juice, soda, berries, candy, and curry. If you do consume these items, rinse or brush your teeth immediately afterwards.
- Avoid tobacco products. Tobacco causes veneers to yellow and may damage the bonding cement. Try to eliminate or restrict tobacco use and—if used—brush immediately after use.
- Avoid ice and hard candy. Like natural teeth, veneers chip. Use caution with hard foods that might damage the surface and cause chipping.
If you don’t care for your teeth on a daily basis, food and plaque can build up on the gum line and around the top edge of your veneers. Treating this problem could require the removal of healthy tooth structures.
Reasons for Veneers
Through modern dentistry, there are a variety of ways to improve the appearance of your teeth. Regular dental care, including good oral hygiene and routine oral exams and cleanings, go a long way toward keeping teeth in tip-top shape.
But some things are beyond your control, and you may still be unsatisfied with the way your teeth look. Whether they are chipped, stained, irregularly shaped or have other cosmetic flaws, dental veneers may be the answer.
Are Dental Veneers Right for You?
If teeth whitening isn’t a viable solution and you’d like to avoid having a crown placed, porcelain veneers may be something to consider. Unlike teeth whitening, veneers don’t actually remove stains from the teeth; they cover them up instead. They can also be used to successfully mask other flaws like small gaps between the teeth, discolored teeth, uneven teeth or misaligned teeth.
Porcelain veneers can’t be removed once they are placed because they are permanently bonded to the teeth. Therefore, you have to be willing to make a permanent change to the appearance of your smile.
What are Porcelain Veneers?
Although resin composite veneers are also available, most patients opt for porcelain veneers. That’s mostly because porcelain veneers look the most natural. They consist of extremely thin pieces of porcelain. Most veneers are just a few millimeters thick. They are also mostly translucent, so they reflect the light in a way that closely mimics natural teeth. This is important because opaque veneers would be very apparent and would make your smile look unnatural.
Porcelain veneers are custom-designed for each patient. Your dentist will examine the affected teeth to ensure that the correct veneers are designed. Impressions and X-rays may also be used to facilitate the design process. The goal is to create wafer-thin veneers that fit as naturally as possible over the teeth. When they are correctly designed, it’s virtually impossible to tell that they have been placed. Stains and other imperfections will be gone, but the teeth themselves will look completely natural.
Veneers are bonded permanently to the teeth using special cement. When they are placed, the cement is cured with a special light, which causes a chemical reaction. This chemical reaction is what actually bonds the veneer permanently to the tooth. Although it’s technically possible for a veneer to become dislodged or to fall off, it’s exceedingly rare. The typical porcelain veneer should last a decade or more, so it’s a viable long-term solution to dental imperfections.
What to Expect
The process of having veneers designed and placed is simple and straightforward. Before anything else can happen, you need to let your dentist know that you’re interested in veneers. This is an elective procedure, so it’s usually not something that is actually prescribed. During your next oral exam, mention your interest in veneers to your dentist.
A few steps you can expect to follow during the process include:
Initial Exam – At this appointment, your dentist will examine the affected teeth in order to send accurate information to the dental lab. X-rays, 3-D imaging and impressions may also be taken to ensure accuracy. This information will be sent to the lab, and your custom porcelain veneers will be created within about one to two weeks.
No Prep Veneers
We can usually place your veneers in a single visit. Prepping your teeth is the first step. We may remove a small amount of enamel to eliminate misalignment issues. Then we’ll clean, polish, and etch your teeth.
Before we apply any cement we place the custom veneers to make sure they fit right. We might need to trim them down, or make other adjustments. Once we’re sure of the placement we’ll position them and fix them into place with the bonding agent. A special hand-held light dries the cement.
The last step is removing excess cement from your teeth and evaluating your bite. We may also schedule a follow-up appointment to make sure everything’s performing as it should be.
Once the process is complete, you can expect your veneers to last for several years. The appearance of your teeth will be improved instantly. Porcelain veneers are resistant to stains, but you should still practice good oral hygiene. Come in for regular oral exams and follow your dentist’s advice as usual. You’re sure to love your new, flaw-free smile.