A frequently asked question from friends and family at gatherings –
‘I really want that perfect smile we see in movies! Should I do veneers?’
Other subsequent frequently asked questions to follow as the gathering continues (outside of working hours)…
‘Will my teeth not get sensitive if the dentist shaves it down’?
‘What happens when my veneers come off?’
‘Does it last for life?’
‘What if I don’t like the shape and colour of my veneers?’
Well, today we are going to answer these frequently asked questions about veneers so you can make a sound decision in the pursuit of that Hollywood smile!
What exactly are Veneers?
Veneers are thin porcelain shells cemented on the front side of your teeth (Think of acrylic nails except that they are for teeth).
There are 2 main materials for Veneers: Porcelain and Composite Resin.
As a shell, it gives more freedom to change the shape, colour and size of your natural teeth by shaving down the outer layer in order to make room for the veneers to sit on top, without looking bulky.
Heres an idea of how many shapes alone teeth can have:
Composite Resin, is a cheaper option but it generally does not last as long. It can also be premade and altered when applied onto teeth. Commonly used in non dental outlets such as beauticians which is technically illegal in Singapore though commonly done overseas.
Porcelain veneers on the other hand, are superior in shine and longevity though more expensive as they are custom made with a dentist and dental laboratory. A wide variety of colours and shapes are available with digital mock ups that can be done to show you the before and after, before you even start!
Porcelain versus Composite Veneers: What are the considerations?
In which cases should you consider doing veneers?
Mainly to improve teeth that have been irreversibly damaged in one way or another, that can compromise the aesthetics of a healthy looking smile!
Here a few examples:
- Internal stains that cannot be removed or improved with teeth whitening
- Damaged teeth from trauma (Fracture, fall, )
- To close gaps in teeth without going through orthodontic treatments
- If you are considering lengthening your teeth
When are veneers not recommended?
- Active teeth grinding/clenching
- Uncontrolled gum disease
- Tooth decay
- Badly worn/broken down tooth
- Overall misalignment of teeth
- Heavy coffee drinker/smoker, as it may cause discolouration at margins
What is the process of getting Veneers?
What do we recommend in keeping your tooth and veneers healthy?
1. 6 monthly cleaning -helps prevent stains (e.g tea, wine, cigarettes) from accumulating at margins
2. Avoid eating on hard foods with veneers (e.g nuts, ice)
3. Avoid grinding your teeth, wear a night guard if you have night time grinding
What are some other alternatives to veneers?
These are similar to veneers in the way they are made, however they involve more removal of natural tooth structure! These are usually done when the tooth is more worn down or have been root canal treated!
There are 2 options for this - first where it is done in the clinic chairside by the dentist, while the other is given to you as a home application in a tray!
However, whitening has its limitations as it picks up stains a lot easier from coffee/tea/cigarette! You may be advised to do whitening before your veneers are placed to enhance the results!
Read more on whitening here!
I hope this article has answered some of your questions before you decide to begin on your journey to achieve your best smile!