Dental Veneers – Make Your Smile a Dazzling One
Have you ever considered veneers?
They might be the preferred method for you.
Veneers create a beautiful and custom-crafted new look for your teeth. Your teeth can attain clean and bright color, free of blemishes and imperfections, with the super-thin new skin of veneers.
Dental veneers are made of a wafer-thin layer which is applied and bonded to the surface of your teeth. Veneers improve teeth color, their shape and fix any problems with tooth size or length. They can be the best choice for those who want to change the shape and size of their teeth more than can be accomplished with bonding, but not enough to require a crown.
There are two types of veneers- porcelain veneers and resin-composite veneers. Examination and evaluation are required in order to determine which choice is the most suitable for your teeth and situation. Dr. Lohmann will thoroughly explain his findings to help you understand which veneer type is best for you.
Porcelain Veneers are generally preferred for their superior stain-resistance and their more natural look. Porcelain reflects light naturally and more closely mimics the look of real teeth. However, not all teeth have adequate enamel for porcelain veneers, as a thin layer of enamel must be removed when applying them.
In this case, Resin Veneers are a better choice, as they are thinner and require less enamel removal for bonding purposes.
What Can Veneers Do for You?
Most people think of veneers for their cosmetic value. Some teeth are so severely discolored that whitening cannot fully do the job. Such severe discoloration can occur from age, root canal treatments, certain drugs (such as antibiotics), environmental factors, large fillings and other causes. (link to causes of tooth discoloration). In each of these cases, dental veneers can do an excellent job of creating beautiful, stain-free teeth.
Almost no one is born with a perfect set of teeth. They may be spaced irregularly, have gaps, be misaligned or not match up. With veneers it is possible to correct these irregularities, even out misalignment and fill gaps.
However, there are other benefits to veneers beyond creating a clean, bright smile. Teeth wear down over time, from their almost constant use. They are exposed to all sorts of daily grinding, pressure and impacts. Veneers can help restore worn-down teeth and fix chips or breaks.
What to Expect When You Get Veneers
Veneers are a custom product and it normally requires several visits to get them done. Usually a follow-up visit is required as well after they have been placed.
- During your first visit, you will receive a comprehensive consultation and evaluation to determine if veneers are suitable for your teeth and what type of results can be expected. This is the time to discuss what you are hoping to achieve and to gain a better understanding of what the entire process will involve. Dr. Lohmann will examine your teeth and may want X-rays before recommending proceeding with veneers. If it is determined that veneers are right for you, the next visit is scheduled to prep your teeth and make impressions for the veneers.
- At the next visit, Dr. Lohman will remove a layer of enamel equal to the thickness of your new veneers, about a one-half a millimeter. (note: in most cases only the front, visible teeth will receive veneers.) A local anesthetic is often used for numbing the area is used for this procedure.
- Impression are then taken of the teeth so the lab can fashion your custom “shells” or veneers. It usually takes a week or two for the veneers to come back from the lab. In some circumstances, Dr. Lohmann may recommend applying temporary veneers. This requires additional work and an extra cost.
- When your veneers come back from the lab it is time for that bedazzling moment. The veneers are bonded to your teeth and you have your new smile! There is a little more work to do before the placement is permanent, but you get to have a look and it can be astonishing.
- Your veneers will need minor fitting and adjustments before permanently fitting them, so Dr. Lohmann will temporarily place them on your teeth to check color and fit. With a little trimming and some variation of the cement shade, a perfect fit and color can be achieved.
- Now it is time to prep the teeth. First they are cleaned, polished and etched so that a clean, strong bond can occur.
- Cement is then applied to the teeth and the veneers are set into place. A special light is then used to get the cement fully fixed and to create a quick, yet permanent bond with the veneers.
- Dr. Lohmann will then check for adjustments, clean up any excess cement and may want to set up a follow-up visit for a final re-check.
Your New Smile After Veneers
Porcelain veneers create gorgeous teeth that look completely natural. They can lighten even the darkest and most discolored teeth. In practically all cases, the body and gums respond very well to porcelain. (Unlike dentures, bridges or braces, veneers don’t cause discomfort.) They are stain- resistant and quite durable, with a normal life span of about 10 years
Know Before You Go
Like anything, there are some factors to understand and evaluate before deciding on veneers. Get yourself educated.
- Applying veneers involved removing a layer of enamel. Therefore, the decision for veneers is permanent and can’ be reversed.
- Some teeth may become more sensitive to hot or cold foods or liquids after the placement of veneers.
- Although they are quite tough and durable, veneers can crack, chip or even fall off. While this is unlikely and normally preventable by avoiding activities like chewing on ice or other hard items, they can still suffer damage. They are not reparable, so they must be removed and replaced if they are damaged.
- Veneers aren’t recommended for heavy grinders
- Veneers aren’t recommended for unhealthy or decayed teeth, as they can be further damaged. In these cases, dental crowns are a more suitable choice.
- Thin enamel layers or very sensitive teeth can make veneers unsuitable.
- Weak teeth, such as those with large cavities and fillings don’t do well with veneers.
- Unhealthy or diseased gums need to be treated before considering veneers.
- Veneers can be unsuitable for a misaligned jaw, poor bite or needed orthodontics work.
Dr. Lohmann evaluates every factor that may impact the feasibility of veneers before recommending them. If veneers won’t work for you, don’t worry. There are other alternatives to correct problem teeth. Dr. Lohmann will work with you to find a workable solution to get you to your goal of that ideal smile.
How Do You Take Care of Veneers?
Dental veneers can chip or come off, if not cared for properly. If you get veneers, you will need to maintain consistent good oral hygiene and have regular dental examinations and cleanings at least twice a year. In addition, you should avoid using veneers to bite or crack hard objects like nuts or ice.
How Much Do Veneers Cost?
Costs of veneers vary depending on what part of the country you live in and the extent of your procedure. Generally, veneers range in cost from $500 to $1300 per tooth. Insurance doesn’t generally pay for veneers. Check with your insurance company to be sure.