A: It is a permanent solution, but I would never call it a lifetime solution. In dentistry, most of the time, the teeth God gave us don’t even last a lifetime. So, to expect something that’s put in at a dentist’s office to last a lifetime, I think is unrealistic. However, it is a permanent solution. When we put a veneer on, we definitely tell a patient to expect this to last for 10, 15, or maybe even 20 years without any real issues.
When you think about your greatest strengths what comes to mind? Your intelligence? Maybe it’s your humility? It could possibly be your quick thinking. However, one of your greatest strengths that often goes overlooked—is your smile. Your smile makes the most definitive and impactful first impression before you even speak. Studies conclude that 49.7% of the population in the U.S. feel that a smile is the most appealing feature of a person.
The problem, however, is that over time, our smile can get “worn out.” Teeth can become stained, we may have a chipped tooth or two, or they may be misshapen or imperfect to begin with. In fact, someone is rarely born with a perfect smile, all smiles have some irregularity to them. But there is something you can do to improve your smile easily. Getting porcelain veneers in Houston is how many people get that bright, healthy appearance in their smile.
How Does A Veneer Improve Your Smile?
We’ve been talking about veneers for a few months now, and for good reason—there’s a high demand for them. We get at least a dozen questions about veneers every month from clients of all backgrounds. The fact is, no matter your lifestyle, income, or disposition—everyone wants a beautiful smile. Veneers can make that happen in most cases.
A veneer as previously mentioned is like a covering for your tooth—it can cover minor to moderate imperfections without major surgery. Made of wafer-thin porcelain, veneers are bonded to the front of your teeth permanently. They hide any stains, minor alignment issues, chips, and other cosmetic issues. The result is a smile that looks natural, but flawlessly white, and straight with the correct shape of teeth.
When we say permanent, we don’t mean a lifetime. However, as Steven mentioned, we do mean they should last anywhere from 10-20 years with proper care. Since veneers are irreversible, it’s important to know all there is to know about them. That’s why we’ve been covering this topic for the last three months.
You Have To Determine If A Veneer Will Work For You
Just because veneers are one of the least invasive procedures in Houston dentistry doesn’t mean they will work for you. There are a few things that could even make veneers unavailable to you due to some dental conditions. These conditions can include:
- Significant tooth damage such as a fracture
- Misaligned bites such as an under or overbite
- Gum disease
If you have signs or verified cases of any of these conditions you will need to discuss your options with your dentist. There may be an alternative treatment to improve your smile despite not being eligible for veneers.
In case you missed our prior vlogs in this series, we want to give you a brief overview of the veneers process. The more you know about the subject, the better of an educated and informed decision you can make when considering veneers. Veneers are a multi-visit procedure− they can’t be completed in one visit. The entire process takes nearly a month and could be shorter or longer depending on the complexity of your veneers. Now that you know how long you’re committed for let’s talk about how to get the most out of your new smile.
There’s No Substitute For Experience
Even though veneers don’t require an invasive procedure, they are still a serious and long-lasting solution. Your veneers should only be created and installed by a qualified Houston dentist with extensive experience in veneers. You should be aware that many dental clinics in Houston do not offer veneers or other cosmetic services. We, however, offer a full line of cosmetic and restorative dental procedures under one practice.
So, your first visit will consist of a dental exam that will help determine if veneers are going to be compatible with your teeth. If they are, your veneer options will be presented to you and the dentist will help you choose the right ones for you. It should be noted, if you need extractions, implants, or a filling those have to be done before veneers.
Once you’ve been cleared, the dentist will prep the teeth for veneer fitment. This includes shaving the surface of your teeth down a bit. This allows the veneers to sit flush on top of your old teeth without affecting your bite. This consequently also removes some enamel from your teeth, that is why we say veneers are irreversible. Although the amount of enamel removed is extremely small, it still is permanent─ so carefully consider this.
After that is removed, you’ll have molds of your teeth made and receive a temporary set of veneers. This gives you a chance to see if you like the veneers as designed and adjustments can be made in the lab.
Once you have them to your liking, the permanent veneers are custom made in the lab with extreme precision. Your temporaries will be taken off, and the permanent veneers will be bonded to your teeth after being aligned perfectly. That’s the whole process, your new smile is ready to show off.
Getting The Most Use Out Of Your Veneer
Veneers should be treated just like regular teeth, you still need to brush and floss at least twice a day. But because you have veneers there are some additional precautions and care you want to take with them. After all, you spent your hard-earned money on these veneers, you want them to look great as long as possible.
- Practice Excellent Oral Hygiene— Floss and brush at least twice a day, yes we said this twice because it’s that important. Also, be sure to make use of some good mouthwash like Closys to rinse out any bacteria. As usual, make sure to visit your dentist regularly to monitor oral health and catch any issues early.
- Use Protection— If you suffer from teeth grinding or participate in sports, make sure you’re using a mouth or night guard. It only takes an accidental elbow to the jaw or a fall to do over 1k of damage to your veneers.
- Avoid Hard Foods— We know how common it is for people to eat things like ice, hard candy, and other like items. However, many of these hard foods, if bit down on just right, can chip your veneers. So, try to avoid foods such as:
- Hard Candy
- Popcorn Kernels
- Pen caps (not food, but we’ve seen it all)
- Avoid Foods That Stain Teeth— Another thing that can ruin your veneers, at least in appearance, is stains. As is the case with natural teeth, veneers can stain just as easily and some foods are more punishing than others. Try to avoid or eat with caution, foods like:
- Red Wine
- Cranberry Juice
So, Are Veneers Really Permanent?
If you want to get into semantics, technically the answer is no, but then again permanent teeth aren’t permanent either. Like teeth, if you care for them with discipline and barring accidents− you can easily get 20 years out of veneers.
However, over time there will be wear and tear, and sooner than later if you’re not careful. At some point, you’ll probably want to look at getting another set. Now, if a singular tooth happens to get damaged early on, you can get that replaced by itself.
Considering Veneers In Houston?
When all is said and done, veneers are an outstanding value and a worthwhile investment into your smile. If you are considering getting veneers, contact us, and schedule a free consultation. We’d love to design a set for you!