Do you want a smile makeover? Whether your teeth are misaligned, discolored, chipped, uneven, or have gaps, dental veneers are a possible solution. Veneers are a cosmetic dental procedure that only alter the front surface of your teeth. They are one of the fastest, easiest ways to transform your smile.
How do dental veneers work? Here’s an overview of the procedure from start to finish.
What Are Dental Veneers?
Dental veneers are thin, shell-like artificial covers for your teeth. They are different from crowns that cover the entire tooth, as veneers only cover the front side of your teeth and slightly wrap around the sides. They come in a variety of materials and can be matched to your natural tooth color.
Materials for Veneers
Veneers can be made of a few different materials, which have their own pros and cons:
- Porcelain. This is the most common material for dental veneers. One benefit of porcelain is that it is strong enough to resist chipping and scratching. It also closely resembles natural tooth enamel. The only downside is that it is the most expensive type of veneers.
- Composite. Veneers can also be made of composite resin, which is a combination of materials. Composite resin is the material used to fill cavities in teeth because it is strong and can be created to match the color of the natural teeth. The disadvantages of composite veneers is that they are more susceptible to wear and discoloration.
- Prefabricated. Prefab veneers are also made of composite resin, but are made in advance rather than custom. The benefit is that you can have them placed right away. However, they may not look as natural as custom made veneers.
Porcelain veneers also last longer than either type of composite veneers, which is another reason why they are more costly. They are still the most preferred type.
What Makes Someone an Ideal Candidate for Veneers?
In order to be an ideal candidate for veneers, you must have healthy teeth and gums. Veneers are not designed to repair teeth that are decayed or severely damaged. It is a cosmetic procedure to cover imperfections that exist.
The Procedure for Getting Veneers
If you decide you want to get dental veneers, here’s how the process works.
- Consultation. The first step in any dental procedure is always a consultation. Your dentist will evaluate your teeth to determine whether or not you are an ideal candidate for veneers. If your teeth and gums are healthy, you are ready for veneers.
- Restorative Procedures. If you need any, the preparatory procedures will need to be done first, such as cavity fillings, root canals, or gum treatment. Once your teeth are restored to a healthy state, the process of getting veneers can continue.
- Preparation of the Teeth. A very thin layer of enamel will be shaved off of the front surface of your teeth to prepare for the veneers. This can be done using local anesthetic if necessary.
- Impressions. Impressions will be made of the teeth to be a model for the veneers. Impressions are just digital scans of your teeth that are used to create your veneers.
- Temporary Veneers. You will receive temporary veneers that you can wear until your permanent ones are created.
- Veneers are Created. Your veneers will be made in a lab using the digital impressions of your teeth and sent back to your dentist.
- Veneers are Fitted. Once your veneers arrive at your dentist’s office you can go in for a fitting. If there are problems with the fit, they may need to go back to the lab for adjustments.
- Veneers are Bonded into Place. Once the veneers fit properly they can be permanently bonded to your existing teeth. Your new smile is complete.
If you decide to go with prefabricated veneers, the process will be much shorter.
Ready for a New Smile? Get Veneers at Arrowhead Dental
If you think dental veneers are the right option for you, Arrowhead Dental is here to help. We provide porcelain, composite, and prefabricated veneers for patients with healthy, but imperfect teeth. If your teeth have not responded to whitening treatments or you don’t want to spend years in braces straightening your teeth, veneers may be the solution.