Your smile tells the world who you are. It is the first thing that many people notice, and a beautiful smile can make a terrific first impression. Yet many people have teeth that are healthy but unsightly. Whether yours are misshapen, stained, yellowed, crooked, or any of a long list of cosmetic issues, porcelain veneers are one option to give you a straight, white, dazzling Hollywood smile.
What Are Porcelain Veneers?
Porcelain veneers are exceptionally thin shells of dental porcelain that fit over the front of your existing teeth. They require little or no preparation of your teeth, avoiding the loss of healthy tooth structure that is affiliated with crowns. Porcelain veneers are carefully bonded to your teeth, providing a durable and long-lasting solution to cosmetic problems.
What Are Some Common Reasons for Using Veneers?
Veneers are not a substitute for proper treatment of injured or diseased teeth. However, many healthy teeth become unsightly due to a wide range of factors. Common cosmetic problems that can be successfully covered by veneers include:
- Discoloration: Often caused by tetracycline, root canal treatments, large fillings, or excessive fluoride
- Worn down: As you age, your teeth can begin to wear down from the repeated forces of biting and chewing, especially if you are prone to chewing on ice or pencils, or using your teeth as a tool.
- Chipping or breakage: Often caused by minor trauma, such as a fall, that is not serious enough to cause damage throughout the tooth structure
- Unevenness or misshaping: Teeth are unique, and some simply grow in more perfectly than others. Uneven or misshapen teeth are extremely common.
- Small gaps: If you have small gaps between your teeth, they do not necessarily need an extensive treatment such as braces or Invisalign, but they can make you feel self-conscious.
Will Porcelain Veneers Last?
Like most dental treatments, porcelain veneers do not last forever. However, with proper care, they can easily last for 10 or more years. They are much more durable than other common options such as dental bonding, and can easily withstand the normal forces applied by biting and chewing.
Porcelain veneers are also more stain resistant than your natural teeth, assuming that you follow a strong regimen of good oral hygiene. While tooth whitening needs to be done again and again, veneers will continue to look as good as new.
Do Porcelain Veneers Look Natural?
Many people are afraid that cosmetic dentistry will give them an artificially bright, overly white “game show host” smile. The reality, however, is that porcelain veneers look highly natural. They mirror the sheen and translucency of your real teeth rather than creating a blocky or opaque look. They are available in a large range of colors and can be custom-tinted, and we can carefully match them to your existing smile.
Some people choose to have their natural teeth whitened before having veneers placed. This allows you to select a whiter shade of porcelain while keeping the color match in your mouth. If you choose this option, just be aware that you may need to touch up the whitening periodically.
Besides whitening your other teeth, we can also suggest complementary treatments to further enhance your smile. One of the most commonly recommended is Invisalign. While porcelain veneers can hide small gaps, and full-mouth veneers can cover even major cosmetic issues, Invisalign is often a cost-effective mid-range alternative. By gently realigning and straightening your teeth, we can virtually eliminate the need to remove tooth structure to prepare your teeth for the veneers, and we can avoid adding unnecessary veneers to give the illusion of perfectly straight teeth.
Whether or not to choose porcelain veneers is a highly personal decision. We will consider the health and aesthetics of your existing smile, and present you with detailed information about various treatment options. Taking into account your budget, your needs, and your desires, we will help you select the treatment plan that is best for you.
Conveniently located in Woodbury, MN, Creekview Dental provides a progressive yet conservative approach to dental care. Our innovative, highly personalized procedures are focused on maintaining tooth structure and providing you with the healthy, beautiful smile you deserve. Call us today at 651-738-8204 to take the first steps on the road to better dental health.