A common cosmetic dentistry treatment, veneers are a popular solution for people with stained or misshapen teeth. Our expert cosmetic dentists are able to provide custom dental veneers to help you get the smile you’ve always wanted.
What are Dental Veneers?
Sometimes called “laminates,” dental veneers are custom-made, wafer-thin shells comprised of tooth-colored materials, which are designed to mimic the appearance of natural teeth.
Bonded to the exterior surface of a tooth, a veneer is able to effectively change the shape, color, length or size of teeth to improve their overall appearance.
Dental veneers are comprised of either porcelain or a resin composite material. Although they tend to be more expensive, porcelain veneers usually do a better job of mimicking the light-reflecting characteristics of natural teeth. They are also more durable and tend to resist stains better than resin veneers.
Our knowledgeable dental professionals can help you choose the most appropriate option for your unique needs.
Who Needs Dental Veneers?
Veneers can be especially effective at improving the aesthetic of teeth that have natural flaws or have been damaged. Most often, they are used to treat one or more of the following:
- Teeth that have been discolored by root canal treatment, excessive fluoride, tetracycline
- Teeth that have large resin fillings which noticeably alter color
- Teeth that have been worn down over time
- Teeth that have been chipped or broken due to injury
- Teeth that are uneven, misaligned or irregularly shaped
- Teeth with noticeable gaps that negatively impact appearance
What is the Process Like?
Our staff of professional dentists will generally schedule two to three appointments. Your first appointment may be a consultation with one of our experienced cosmetic dentist. He or she can perform an assessment and let you know about your options.
After deciding on veneers, your dentist will remove some of the enamel from your teeth. From there, a model will be taken of your mouth and it will be sent to a specialty lab to have your veneers custom made for you. During your final appointment, the dentist will apply your veneers to your teeth.
How are Veneers Applied?
A dental professional will start by examining your teeth to make sure veneers are an appropriate option for your needs. He or she will then explain the procedure and discuss any limitations that might reduce the effectiveness of the treatment. If you agree to go forward with the treatment, your dentist may take X-rays or impressions.
To prepare your tooth for a veneer, the dentist will remove approximately 1/2 millimeter of enamel to provide enough room for the veneer. In some cases, local anesthetic may be used to numb the area. Your dentist will then create an impression or model of your tooth. This will then be sent to a dental laboratory, which will construct your custom veneer. It generally takes about two to four weeks for the laboratory to create and deliver custom veneers. That said, temporary dental veneers can sometimes be used to treat especially unsightly teeth.
Once your dentist has your custom veneers, he or she will temporarily place it on your tooth to examine its color and fit. The dentist will then trim the veneer to ensure a proper fit. Various shades of cement may be used to slightly alter the color of the veneer. Once everything is ready, your tooth will be cleaned polished and carefully etched to promote adhesion. A special cement is then used to bond the veneer to your tooth. The dentist then applies a special light, which activates chemicals within the cement, causing it to cure rapidly.
Once the veneer is bonded in place, your dentist will evaluate your bite and make any final adjustments. You will then be asked to schedule a follow-up appointment to see how your gums are responding to the presence of your new veneer.
What About Costs?
At Gentle Dental, we strive to be gentle on your wallet. After your consultation with the dentist, our staff will help you determine your best and most affordable option to meet your treatment goals. This may include your dental insurance, our in-house value or discount plans, major credit cards, and financing options.
How do I Make an Appointment?
Our office staff would be delighted to help you book an appointment for a dental veneer consultation. One of our cosmetic dentists can perform an assessment and let you know if veneers are a good option for you and can also present alternative treatments that can give you the smile that you want. Evening and weekend appointments are available, making office visits as gentle on your schedule as our dentists are while providing you with treatment.