Dental Veneers is a thin layer of porcelain made to fit over the front surface of a tooth, like a false fingernail fits over a nail. Sometimes a natural color ‘composite’ material is used instead of porcelain.
Types of Dental Veneers
Dental veneers can be made from porcelain or from resin composite materials. Porcelain veneers resist stains better than resin veneers. They also better mimic the light-reflecting properties of natural teeth. You will need to discuss the best choice of veneer material for you with your dentist.
What are the benefits of dental veneers?
The biggest benefit to veneers is improving the appearance of your teeth, giving you a brighter and more even smile. Dental veneers are often used to treat the following cosmetic occurrences:
- broken or chipped teeth
- severe discoloration or uneven coloring that can’t be fixed with whitening
- gaps in the teeth
- smaller-than-average teeth
- pointed or unusually shaped teeth
Veneers can last for more than a decade, depending on the type of veneer you choose, making them a semipermanent investment that can make you more confident in your smile.
Dental Veneer Risks
Veneers are routinely used to fix:
Teeth that are discolored because of:
root canal treatment
stains from tetracycline or other drugs
large resin fillings
Veneers aren’t the same as dental implants or crowns. Veneers cover only the front surface of the tooth, while crowns encase the entire tooth. Veneers are also thinner than crowns: about 1 mm, compared to 2 mm.
Veneers are less invasive, too. If you need a crown, your dentist will have to file or ground down more of your tooth to prepare it for the crown than would be necessary for the application of a veneer.
Meanwhile, an implant is installed in the bone to replace a missing tooth, and a crown is placed on top of that. It can take several months after the implant is placed for the area around it to heal enough for the replacement tooth to be placed on top.