One of the most popular methods of restoring a smile is through the use of dental veneers. A dental veneer is a thin, tooth-colored shell made of porcelain or plastic that fits over the front of your teeth. People with crooked or discolored teeth or with big, noticeable gaps can have veneers placed to change the color or shape of their smile. Your dentist may recommend a single veneer to restore a tooth that has been fractured or several veneers to create a "Hollywood" smile. Veneers are especially popular as a cosmetic restoration because your dentist can place veneers with little or no anesthesia, and the veneers typically stay in place and retain their color longer than dental bonding.
During your first visit, the dentist will buff the front of your teeth to create space for the thickness of the veneer. After that, a mold is taken from which the veneers will be made. During a second appointment, the veneers are placed on your teeth to check their fit and color, and any adjustments are made. Your teeth are treated to prepare them for bonding and then the veneers are cemented into place.
Once they are in place, you continue to brush and floss normally and visit the dentist for regular checkups. With proper care, your veneers will typically last five to ten years. If you have always dreamed of having a movie star smile, dental veneers can be the answer you are looking for.
After a thorough examination of your teeth, which may include x-rays and taking impressions of your teeth, your dentist will remove a thin layer of enamel from your teeth. Then he or she will create an impression and send it off to a laboratory to create the veneer. While the mold is being created, your dentist may provide you with temporary veneers. Finally, the veneer's size and color are given one last adjustment before they are cemented to your tooth on your second visit.
Veneers can give your teeth a more natural, aesthetically pleasing appearance and are stain resistant as well as soft on gums. In some cases, veneers can serve a restorative purpose and can protect a damaged tooth from further harm.
Since porcelain veneers are more resistant to stains and chipping, they are generally more expensive. Lumineers® are a particularly popular type of porcelain veneers that do not require your teeth to be shaved and can even be placed over crown or bridgework.