Dental Veneers 101

Dental Veneers 101

by Alex Hirsch (SU)

Dental veneers cover the front of the teeth for a flawless appearance – one veneer per tooth as necessary. These veneers are also called porcelain veneers or porcelain laminates.

Veneers are very thin shells of porcelain that make your teeth look perfect. They are fashioned to match the color of your other teeth so they look natural. 

Why Would I Get Dental Veneers? 

There are several ways in which a dental veneer can correct a tooth’s appearance: 

  • To make a yellowed or stained tooth look white again
  • To cover a pitted tooth
  • To make a tooth slightly wider to fill in a tiny gap
  • To correct a chipped tooth
  • To make a tooth slightly longer to be even with your other teeth

While the function of veneers is mostly cosmetic, they are also very strong. Because veneers are made of porcelain, they provide strength to the tooth which is similar to that of enamel.

How a Dental Veneer Is Made 

Each veneer is custom-made to the patient’s tooth structure and the shade of the adjacent teeth. The dentist will first check for the proper shade to match the patient’s teeth.

The patient will then receive a dental cleaning, and then the dentist will remove a miniscule bit of enamel from the tooth in order to make room for the veneer. Once the proper amount is removed, the dentist will take a molding of the tooth for the laboratory to use when fashioning the veneer.

While the veneer is being made, the dentist may place a temporary veneer over the tooth. 

How Does the Dentist Apply Them to the Teeth?

Once the dentist receives the veneer from the laboratory, the patient will come back to the dentist’s office for placement. The teeth will first be fully cleaned, and then each veneer will be attached individually via a light-curing method. 

The dentist cures the veneer for 60 seconds on each tooth that is receiving a veneer. After the veneer is bonded to the tooth, the dentist removes any excess material and then polishes the veneer.

Local anesthesia is rarely required, but it can be used if the patient tends to have sensitive teeth or anxiety and would prefer anesthesia. 

How Long Do Dental Veneers Last? 

Though the veneer is strong and durable, it may eventually need to be replaced. With attention to oral health, a veneer can last anywhere between 10 and 20 years or even longer.

Because veneers cannot be repaired, a chipped veneer must simply be re-done by your dentist. Therefore, it is in your best interest to be gentle with your teeth and with your veneers so they last as long as possible. 

Maintaining Dental Veneers

Caring for dental veneers is the same as caring for regular teeth. You should continue good oral hygiene, brushing and flossing regularly and keeping up with regular dental visits.

The veneers are as strong as your own teeth – and just like with regular teeth, there are a few things that should be avoided in order to keep them healthy and strong:

  • Don’t use your teeth for anything except biting and chewing.
  • Avoid biting down on hard foods, such as hard candy.
  • Do not chew on ice.
  • Avoid bad habits like chewing on pencils and pens or biting your nails.

Cosmetic Dentistry in Las Vegas

Dedicated Dental is here for all of your dental care needs. We provide cosmetic solutions as well as regular dentistry to keep your teeth healthy. 

If you want to improve the look of your teeth, or you’re looking for an excellent dentist in the Las Vegas or Henderson area, call us today at (702) 566-5509 or complete our appointment request form online. We’re here to meet your needs and exceed your expectations of an outstanding smile that lasts a lifetime.