If you’re looking for a way to regain your beautiful smile without it being glaringly fake, then dental veneers are the way to go. These tiny shells, made either of porcelain or tooth-colored composite material, are cemented on the front surfaces of your teeth to hide any imperfections, from deep stains to fractures.
Types of Veneers
There are, traditionally, two types of veneers – porcelain and composite veneers.
Porcelain Veneers – Made with porcelain material, these veneers have the look of natural teeth and are more resistant to staining. The natural likeness of porcelain veneers to teeth has something to do with the translucency of the material which makes it look just like enamel. At the same time, porcelain veneers have glass-like surfaces which repel staining. Because porcelain veneers are rather expensive, Dr. Breazeal usually recommends them when you have extensive tooth damage, such as when the staining has penetrated through the dentin layer or if there are large fractures.
Composite Veneers-This type of veneer is less expensive than porcelain and is directly molded onto teeth. This means that composite veneer procedures can be completed within just one dental appointment. However, composite material isn’t as strong as porcelain and could chip away within a few years. At the same time, composite resin material does not ward off staining. Because the material is directly molded onto teeth, the skill and precision of your dentist will determine the quality of the finished veneer.
The procedure involves getting a dental impression of your teeth using a special kind of putty. This model of your teeth will then be sent to the laboratory for fabrication. It will take around a week or two before your porcelain veneers will be ready. At the meantime, your dentist will prepare the tooth for the veneer. This involves trimming off a part of the dental enamel so that the veneer could be put into place without it sticking out.
This process is irreversible though and would mean that the shaved off enamel could not be recovered. This could lead dental hypersensitivity as well as an increased risk for infections until the veneer can be cemented into place. For the duration, typically one to two weeks, you could ask your dentist for temporary veneers which would protect the weakened tooth or teeth. Or until you get your veneers, you should avoid drinking very cold or hot beverages which could set off the sensitivity.
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