Veneers are one of the best ways to improve your smile. These cosmetic treatments are readily available, take only one or two appointments and can have a huge impact on the look of your teeth. Find out if veneers are right for you.
Basics of Veneers
Like the veneers used in fine furniture, veneers for the teeth are thin coverings used to hide what's underneath. They come in two forms: resin composites, which are a type of moldable plastic, and porcelain shell veneers.
Porcelain veneers are created in a dental lab from multiple thin layers of material. Both general and cosmetic dentists apply veneers.
When You Need Veneers
Aging tends to cause yellowing or a gray look to your teeth. Add that to stains from coffee, tea and red wine, or the effects of nicotine, and it's easy to see why your teeth can become dull and dingy.
In addition, you may have small chips, cracks or gaps between teeth. Veneers can solve all of these problems.
How Do Veneers Work?
Both kinds of veneers are applied directly on the outer surface of the tooth. Resin composite veneers are literally “painted” onto the tooth surface, molded and then hardened with a special high-intensity light.
Porcelain veneers are cemented to the surface of each tooth. Porcelain veneers take at least two visits, while resin composite veneers can be created and shaped in one visit.
Which Is Better?
Both veneers cover imperfections and stains. Porcelain veneers tend to have a translucent sheen like that of the natural tooth and less of the natural tooth is removed to attach them.
However, they are more expensive, and if broken, cannot be repaired. Resin composite veneers can be repaired if they break but tend to have a shorter life. Either can be color-matched to the natural teeth.
Veneers can make a difference. Your stained, chipped teeth can be transformed and your smile can once again show the pearly whites you flashed when you were younger.