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Porcelain veneers, also known as dental veneers or porcelain laminates, are extremely thin, custom-made shells that cover the teeth for cosmetic purposes. These shells are made to give the appearance of real teeth and are bonded to the front of the teeth to provide a new, improved look to the mouth.
As the name implies, these veneers are often made from porcelain. They can also be constructed of resin composite materials. Porcelain tends to be the preferred choice, as they appear more natural and resist stains better. Resin veneers are a bit thinner than porcelain, and they don’t require as much of the tooth surface to be removed in order to be put in place. Each has different benefits for individual patients.
Reasons for Porcelain Veneers
Patients may seek veneers for a number of reasons, including teeth that are discolored, worn down, uneven, misaligned, or irregularly shaped. Dental veneers also correct and close gaps between teeth. The goal of most patients who choose this treatment is to have a straighter, whiter smile. Veneers are an effective method for achieving this without the pain and maintenance of braces.
Procedures for Applying Dental Veneers
Three visits are usually necessary when receiving porcelain veneers. First, a consultation is needed to determine the patient’s needs. The second and third trips are for making and applying the veneers. Patients can have one veneer or multiple ones applied during the same visit.
At the consultation, the patient can explain to the dentist what he or she hopes to achieve with the veneers. The dentist will then do an examination to determine what is possible and if dental veneers are the right course of treatment. The dentist will also likely take x-rays and teeth impressions.
Approximately a half millimeter of tooth enamel is removed from each tooth to prepare for the adhesion of veneers. A local anesthetic is used at the patient’s request. A model or impression of the teeth is made and sent off to a dental laboratory for construction of the veneers. This should take about a week or two for completion.
Before applying the veneer permanently, it will be temporarily placed to check for fit and color. Trimming can be done as needed, and the color can be corrected with various shades of cement. Veneers are adhered to the natural teeth with bonding cement. This special cement is cured with a light beam for permanent placement. Finally, excess cement will be removed, and the bite will be examined. At least one more visit is necessary as a follow-up in order to ensure the veneers are placed correctly and that there are no problems.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Porcelain Veneers
There are both advantages and disadvantages to receiving porcelain veneers. Veneers are a popular choice because they look natural and are gentle to gums and stain resistant. They require less shaping than crowns and are stronger, but they may not be for everyone. It is not a reversible process, and teeth may be sensitive due to removal of enamel. They are not a good choice for those with unhealthy teeth or who grind their teeth. Porcelain veneers are a cosmetic dentistry option for those wishing to have straighter, whiter smiles.
Schedule Your Consultation
At Andover Smiles in North Andover, Dr. Steven Rinaldi offers all of his patients the VIP treatments to help them get the smile of their dreams. During our no-wait appointments, our team will work with you to determine the most appropriate treatment for the issues you’d to like to correct. Contact Andover Smiles today to schedule your consultation and start your journey to your million dollar smile.