If you’ve been aiming to improve the appearance of your smile, porcelain veneers may be able to give you the results you’ve been looking for. This is one of the treatments our team at Cynthia J Mikula, DDS, in Bay Village, OH, is proud to offer our patients.
How Long Do Porcelain Veneers Last?
The porcelain veneers of today are stronger than ever. Cases can vary, but these veneers are expected to last at least a decade. With the right care, they could last you even longer than that, with some patients able to get 15 or 20 years of use out of their veneers and still have them look as great as ever.
Factors That Affect Their Longevity
The Right Maintenance Makes All the Difference
Taking good care of your veneers can help you get the most out of them. Good hygiene goes a long way. If your natural teeth start to decay it can negatively affect the appearance of your veneers.
Be Mindful of Snacks That Stain
While veneers don’t stain easily, anything that can discolor your natural teeth may also negatively affect your veneers. Don’t worry, there are steps you can take to keep your veneers, and your natural teeth, as fresh-looking as possible.
If you enjoy dark berries, coffee, wine, or tea, remember to rinse your mouth with water afterward or lightly brush your teeth. This can help you prevent discoloration when you enjoy your favorite treats.
Be Careful About Biting Hard Items
Veneers are quite strong, but we do caution that you use common sense when it comes to their strength. Just like we wouldn’t recommend you crunch into an ice cube with your natural teeth, we also wouldn’t recommend doing that with a veneer.
Wear a Mouthguard During Sports
This is another tip we suggest whether you have a veneer or not. Just like a hit to the face can damage your natural teeth, it can also damage a veneer. A mouthguard can help your teeth stay exactly where they’re supposed to.
Do You Grind Your Teeth? Consider a Nightguard
Some patients grind their teeth unknowingly when they’re stressed, or during their sleep. Stress reduction may be helpful when it comes to preventing this, but if the teeth grinding persists, you may want to add a nightguard into your routine.
This will help protect the enamel of your natural teeth, and it should also help protect your veneer.
Signs of Grinding Your Teeth
If you don’t know whether or not you grind your teeth, some common symptoms may include the following:
- Trouble sleeping
- Facial pain
- Rapidly wearing teeth
- Easily damaged teeth
- Jaw pain
Since a lot of these symptoms can overlap with other common issues, it’s important to have other causes looked into as well. If you find that your symptoms are, in fact, due to tooth grinding, then wearing a nightguard should help eliminate or at least improve many of these symptoms.
What Are Porcelain Veneers?
These veneers, as their name implies, are made of very thin, specialized porcelain. They are placed over your natural teeth. Since they’re modeled to your unique smile, they blend right in with the shade of your teeth. The veneer will also be proportional in size to its neighboring teeth.
What Are They Used For?
Veneers are often used to cover tooth discoloration. There can be a lot of reasons behind stained teeth, but some common causes may be teeth that have been stained from treatments such as a root canal, or exposure to certain medications like tetracycline.
Due to injuries or general wear, teeth may become worn down, or chipped, and broken. Veneers are a great option to help cover up the signs of tooth damage.
One common reason a patient may seek out veneers is if one of their front teeth is longer or larger than the other. Cosmetic concerns like this can affect a person’s confidence in their smile.
Veneers can help smooth uneven edges, correct irregular shapes such as bulges or craters, and help improve the appearance of misaligned teeth as well.
If you have gaps in your smile that you are self-conscious about, a veneer may be a viable way to fill those gaps.
The Different Kinds of Veneers
Porcelain is the strongest veneer option and maintains its color and aesthetic extremely well. These veneers also tend to be the most gentle option for the gums and soft tissues of the mouth.
Porcelain is already natural in appearance, so it doesn’t take much for these veneers to blend in. With that in mind, there are some different kinds of dental veneers that may be helpful depending on your needs.
Dental bonding is another common option to help cover up chipped teeth, discoloration, or other cosmetic concerns. They are sometimes called composite veneers. Both options can be helpful, but there are some differences in functionality between the two.
Dental bonding involves a resin being applied directly to a prepared tooth. The resin will harden, and then be polished so it’s the right shape and consistency. It’s a simple process to get dental bonding done, and can sometimes be done in a single visit.
How long bonding lasts can vary, depending on how extensively it’s been used and how careful a patient is with their treated teeth. In general, they can last between three to ten years.
Unlike veneers, dental bonding isn’t actually designed to last in the long run. It’s usually used on more minor issues, or in cases where the teeth that are being treated won’t have too much biting force applied to them. For that reason, some believe that dental bonding may be best suited for the front teeth.
Both options are made to blend seamlessly into your smile and should be identical to your natural teeth. Veneers do have the advantage of being very resistant to staining. Bonding resin may stain or discolor over time.
The porcelain material that makes up a veneer can be a bit more expensive than bonding material, but a good veneer may be able to save you money due to its higher durability. Since veneers tend to last longer than dental bonding, you won’t have to pay for as many replacements.
The Right Choice Depends on Your Goals
Bonding and veneers can both be great at improving the appearance of your teeth. In general, if you’re looking for more permanent results, veneers may be the way to go.
What About Temporary Veneers?
Temporary or removable veneers are usually either clip-on or instant. You may find the easily accessible instant or clip-on veneers appealing due to their fairly low price tag. Unfortunately, they don’t tend to look as convincing as real teeth, and they aren’t made to last forever. There is also some concern that poorly-fitted clip-on may cause friction on your teeth during wear, or when you take them on and off. This wear may lead to enamel issues.
It’s also important to keep in mind that food may become trapped between your teeth and the clip-on. Frequent wear may damage your gums over time. Although the starting price tag may be cheaper, some of these alternatives may cause tooth damage if you wear them too frequently.
We Offer Speed and High Quality
The technology we have available to us allows us to get your veneers produced in a single day. First, we’ll scan your teeth with our E4D computer-aided technology. By capturing your teeth in detail, we’ll be able to match your veneer with extreme accuracy.
This same software will help us adjust the veneers until we’re confident that you’re getting the best possible fit for functionality, appearance, and comfort. After that, the machine will mill this restoration in our office, so we can take your brand new veneers and bond them to your teeth.
FAQ About Porcelain Veneers
1. Will I Have To Change My Diet?
The dental porcelain these veneers are made of can often match or even exceed the strength of your natural tooth enamel. When you first receive your veneer, you may want to eat soft foods for a few days just so you can get used to your adjusted bite. After you’ve adjusted and we’ve given you the green light, you can go right back to eating your normal diet.
We can give you personalized advice depending on your unique needs and how much work was done. We’d also be happy to offer advice on what food to avoid if we feel there’s a need to. For the most part, you can expect your veneer to function just like your other teeth.
2. Am I a Good Candidate?
During a consultation, we can go over what your smile goals are and help you determine if a veneer will help you achieve them. Whether you’re hoping to smooth over jagged or chipped teeth, or are just pursuing the smile you’ve always wanted, a veneer can be a great tool to help you get there.
If you have tooth decay, that will have to be thoroughly cleaned out before we install your veneer. Patients who are concerned about tooth grinding can protect their veneer with a nightguard.
3. How Many Veneers Will I Need?
That depends on your goals and your smile. If we feel it will help the cohesiveness of your smile, we may recommend multiple veneers, but you can get just one if that’s your preference. Whether you want one veneer or multiple, we’re here to offer advice and support.
4. What Kind of Oral Care Should I Do?
Veneers can be brushed right along with your natural teeth, and they should be! You can carry right on with your regular dental routine. We recommend brushing at least twice a day, or after every meal to cut down on plaque.
Flossing once or twice a day will help remove stubborn food particles and may help prevent tooth decay. In general, anything that’s good for your teeth is good for your veneer. If veneers are properly cared for, there shouldn’t be any hygiene issues related to them.
5. Are There Any Habits I Should Avoid?
Just like proper oral hygiene is good for both your natural teeth and your veneers, there are some habits that can damage or stress your veneers and your natural teeth. Pulling on things with your teeth is one example. Smoking can cause gum disease and lead to your teeth weakening.
Other habits to avoid can include chewing on hard things like pens and utensils or biting your nails.
We Offer the Results and Compassion You Deserve
Our team sees the people in our patients. We believe that you deserve the best care possible. If you’d like to learn more about our quality veneers, schedule a consultation today with our team at Cynthia J Mikula, DDS, in Bay Village, OH.