Cosmetic dentistry has greatly increased in popularity in recent years as people try to achieve a better smile. Your smile is a very important part of who you are as it can damage your self-esteem should you be embarrassed by the appearance of your teeth. One of the most minimally invasive procedures to improve the look of your smile is dental veneers. These porcelain overlays can change the look, shape or length of your teeth. They are used to cover stains, fix chipped teeth or give minimally crooked teeth a straighter appearance.
The First Step
The first step in determining if dental veneers are the right choice for you is coming into our office for an evaluation. We can discuss what it is that you do not like about your teeth when you smile and perform an evaluation from there. We will discuss what the veneers will do to your actual teeth as well as any alternatives if there are any that fit your situation. Your appointment could also consist of x-rays and/or taking molds of your mouth to determine the right step for your teeth.
If it is determined that porcelain veneers are the right choice for your teeth, the process can begin. Before the overlays can be applied, a small amount of your tooth enamel will need to be removed to allow the veneers to feel natural and not too thick on your teeth. The amount that is removed is very minimal, typically less than one millimeter. This is important not only for appearance, but also for natural function of the teeth. Once the enamel is removed, a mold of your teeth is taken in order to create the veneers that are the perfect size for your teeth.
Once the veneers arrive, your teeth are prepped with a thorough cleaning and etching to give the veneers a surface to adhere to. Once your teeth are prepared, a resin is applied to your teeth, which will adhere to the veneer, helping it to stick to your teeth. The resin is hardened with a special light that gives the veneer the strength it needs to be effective. After the overlays are attached, they are inspected to ensure they are a proper fit and that you have a proper bite to ensure maximum effectiveness.
After you obtain veneers, it’s important to limit the number of drinks and foods that you consume that could stain your teeth. It is also important to keep up proper oral hygiene to allow them to give your teeth the appearance that you desire.