Dental Veneer by Livermore Dentists
Dental veneers, sometimes called porcelain veneers, are thin pieces of tooth-colored porcelain. They are designed to be cemented to the front surfaces of your natural teeth to improve their appearance. These shells are attached to the front of the teeth, which can change their color, shape, size, or even length.
What Types of Problems Do Dental Veneers Fix?
Veneers are regularly used to fix:
- Discolored/stained teeth
- Teeth that are worn down
- Teeth that are damaged
- Teeth that are misaligned, uneven, or misshapen
- Teeth with gaps between them
What is the Procedure for Getting a Dental Veneer?
The process of getting a dental veneer can require up to three trips to the dentist. The trips include one for a consultation and at least two to make and put the veneers on. But this typically depends on schedules and whether or not one tooth or many teeth are undergoing the veneering process simultaneously. The process described below:
- Diagnosis and planning treatment. Your dentist will inspect your teeth to make sure dental veneers are suitable for you. You will also discuss what the procedure entails and what the limitations are. He or she also may take X-rays if necessary.
- Dentists generally trim about ½ millimeter of enamel to prepare teeth for veneer, which is almost equal to the thickness of the veneer. Before your dentist even begins to trim off the enamel, you need to decide if you need a local anesthetic to numb the area.
- Results from a dental laboratory. Your dentist will make an impression of your tooth to be used as a model sent out to a dental laboratory, which will make your veneer. Veneers are usually finished in 2-4 weeks, so while you wait, your dentist will place temporary dental veneers.
- Bonding. Before the dental veneer is permanently placed on your tooth, your dentist will briefly place it on your tooth to see if it’s the right fit and color. So, don’t be surprised when they repeatedly remove and trim the veneer. The goal to get the proper fit and color, which can be adjusted with the cement being used.
- Cleaning a tooth Next, in order for your tooth to be prepared to receive the veneer, your dentist will make sure that it is cleaned, polished, and etched, which adds a rough surface to the tooth and allows for a stronger bonding process. A specialized cement is applied to the veneer and then the veneer is finally placed on your tooth.
- Veneer Attachment. Once correctly positioned on the tooth, your dentist applies a special light beam to the dental veneer, activating the chemicals in the cement, which causes it to harden very quickly.
- Evaluation. The final steps cleaning up the area, removing any leftover cement, examining your bite, and making any adjustments to veneer as needed.
Aftercare Tips for Veneers
Unlike other dental treatments, the recovery process for veneers doesn’t take a long time because once the veneers are cemented on and once the local anesthetic has worn off, you can use your mouth as normal. As the anesthetic wears off, be careful not to chew on your cheeks or tongue. It’s also important to note that sometimes after you first get your veneers, you might notice that they feel a little rough. The roughness is usually caused by excess cement, which can be smoothed out by your dentist.
Taking certain precautions can help make sure that your veneers have the longest lifespan as possible. These precautions include:
- Avoid chewing on hard objects like ice or fingernails
- Don’t open packaging or condiment packages with your teeth
- Eat harder foods that have been cut up with only your back teeth, if possible
- Wear something to guard your teeth if you grind or clench your teeth at night
- For athletes, you should always wear a mouth guard
Dental Veneer with our Livermore Dentists
At Foothill Dental Care in Livermore, our goal is to help you improve your beautiful smile and maintain good oral health. If you have an imperfection your teeth that you want to fix, whether it’s a chipped tooth, a gap, or discoloration, the dentists at Foothill Dental Care in Livermore can help you. We urge our patients to have regular visits to help us detect decay that can cause teeth to weaken and cause cosmetic problems. If you are interested in getting an appointment, call our office at (925) 961-5484 to schedule today.
Dental insurance may cover cosmetic dentistry if they are a medical necessity. Crowns or veneers that placed by a cosmetic dentist to repair diseased, injured, fractured, or missing teeth may be covered by your insurance.
In this particular case, a dentist will recommend dental crowns rather than veneers. If you have fillings in a tooth, the dental crown would be the better option to prevent and protect your teeth from future cavities.
While porcelain veneers are not thought to be permanent, with good care, they may be able to last a lifetime in some patients. Many patients need to replace one or two of their veneers after a while. It could take over a decade before you need a full replacement since porcelain veneers last an average of 10 to 15 years.