What Are Porcelain Veneers?
Porcelain veneers are thin coverings, as thin as a “fingernail”, bonded over teeth to improve their appearance. They can be used to straighten smiles, close-up gaps, replace worn-down teeth, and make teeth permanently whiter.
The procedure involves taking any necessary x-rays and photographs of the teeth. This allows Dr. Goldberg to ensure that this restorative option is a great fit for the patient and their lifestyle.
Veneers make it possible to correct a variety of problems, including:
- Spaces between the teeth
- Chipped teeth
- Yellowing or stains
- Misshapen or crooked teeth
- Small holes or pits in teeth
- Uneven or undersized teeth
Am I a Candidate for Porcelain Veneers?
Ideally, candidates for veneers are individuals who have minor cosmetic imperfections, severely stained teeth, sufficient tooth enamel, moderately straight teeth, and do not grind or clench their teeth. Generally, when it comes to improving a smile, there are multiple options for most patients who come into Dr. Goldberg’s office. After the initial workup, he will be able to make the best recommendation based on your personal situation, lifestyle, and budget.
Who May Not Be A Good Candidate For Veneers?
The following conditions may reduce the potential for veneer treatment:
- Individuals with decay, active gum disease or weakened teeth
- Those with an inadequate amount of existing enamel on the tooth surface
- Individuals who clench or grind their teeth at night
- Individuals who have strong bites, have had heavy restoration work done already, and are teeth-grinders, are not good candidates. Those patients can always consider full crowns as a possible option in achieving the same results as porcelain veneers.
Porcelain Veneers vs Composite Veneers
Traditionally, porcelain has been the most common material because composites have not been able to provide the same results as porcelain. However, that has significantly changed over the last few years, and today it is difficult to distinguish between the two materials. Although porcelain veneers are typically problem-free, occasionally they pop off or chip. This can cause a patient some inconvenience and embarrassment and may require an emergency visit to their dentist. A veneer that has come off can usually be rebonded, but chips are extremely difficult to repair and sometimes impossible. Here are the main differences between the two:
- With Porcelain Veneers, a laboratory must fabricate the veneers, and occasionally they don’t fit correctly
- The teeth must be temporized for one to three weeks with Porcelain Veneers, and occasionally these temporaries can break leading to more emergency visits.
- Composite veneers don’t pop off like porcelain veneers, and if they do chip, Dr. Goldberg can easily repair them.
- There are no impressions, laboratories, and temporaries needed with Composite Veneers.
As you can see, these differences are night and day. Which one you decide to choose is personal preference as they both have their pros and cons.
How Does The Porcelain Veneers Procedure Work?
First, your dentist will examine your mouth, teeth, and “occlusion.” Occlusion refers to your bite, and how your teeth function with respect to each other. In certain cases, it is VERY important to take impressions and for your dentist to study these models with great intensity, and to also discuss your particular situation with the laboratory.
When the study is complete, the next step is to shape your teeth, take a new impression, put temporary veneers onto your shaped teeth, and send the impression to the laboratory. The lab will need anywhere between one and three weeks to fabricate your veneers.
At the following appointment, your dentist will bond the veneers, and your new smile will be complete.
Porcelain Veneers Before and After
“As soon as I arrived for my first visit, I felt welcomed and at home. The receptionist is a true professional. She’s engaging, nice and very organized too. Dr. Ira is a real people person and easy to communicate with. His assistant, Beth, is very gentle and easy to talk with. Everyone in this dental family has a wonderful way about them. I truly appreciate them for making me feel so very welcomed. I’ve made Dr. Goldberg my new permanent Doctor and I will tell everyone how terrific he is!” – Helga P
How Does The Composite Veneers Procedure Work?
As with the first step for porcelain veneers, we must examine and address your “occlusion”. When everything is acceptable, Dr. Golgberg can start your composite veneers. Unlike porcelain veneers, composite veneers can be accomplished directly in the dental office. “Composite” is the same material used for “white fillings,” but the process is more involved due to layering, intense shaping, and high polishing. Depending upon the number of veneers desired, the process can be accomplished in one to two appointments: since all patients are different, you’ll have to talk to your dentist about your individual time-frame.
How Long Do Veneers Last?
This is highly variable since people subject their teeth to stimuli with varying degrees:
- Intensity and amount of clenching and grinding
- Placing objects between their teeth such as pins, nails, pencils
- Staining foods such as coffee, tea, chocolate and medications
- Diet: foods that require more tearing or harder chewing will cause more stress than softer foods.
Typically, veneers should last between 7 and 15 years.
What Are The Side Effects Of Veneers?
The side effects of veneers include sensitivity to the hot and cold. This is caused by the reduction of enamel on the prepared teeth. Sensitivity is a very common lingering effect that typically dissipates in one to two weeks.
Porcelain Veneers Care And Maintainance
Daily care and regular checkups are necessary to help prevent decay (cavities) from forming, allow for early detection and treatment of cavities (before they get too large), and to help remove stain build-up. Some other ways to help care and maintain your veneers are:
- Daily brushing, flossing, and rinsing is a requirement.
- A DENTIST-made night-guard is a necessity: store-bought mouth guards can cause damage!!!
- Regular dental check-ups are necessary: typically every 6 months.