Wading through the options of cosmetic dentistry to decide which procedure is best for your teeth, your oral health and your budget can be intense. Figuring out if veneers are right for you is a decision that should be made with input from your dentist. There are many considerations to make before committing to the procedure.
The Origins of Veneers
Veneers have been around since the early 1900’s and were originally fashioned out of acrylic by Dr. Charles Pincus in Hollywood, California as a way to temporarily improve the smiles of film stars. The veneers were made to adhere for a few hours before being removed. Vast improvements have been made to the process since then, and veneers are now stronger, more natural looking and manufactured to last for 10 years or more.
How Veneers are Made Today
Veneers nowadays are made from porcelain or composite resin. They are best suited to patients who have gaps, chips, discoloration and even minor misalignment of teeth. Oral health must be well-maintained for someone to be considered a good candidate for veneers. Patients with gum disease, insufficient tooth enamel or root canal infection are not considered viable for veneers. They require more invasive procedures to achieve the look and feel veneers provide.
The Process of Placing Veneers
In deciding if veneers are right for you, you should be aware that the placement of veneers is considered to be the least intrusive of dental procedures. It typically requires local anesthesia during the preparation process. After the initial consultation, your dentist will prep your teeth, which involves the removal of a small amount of your existing tooth enamel to increase the surface area of the bonding agent used to install the finished veneers. The dentist will then make an impression from which the veneers will be produced. The inside of the veneers is typically etched, as well, for the same purpose. Your dentist will shape and sculpt the veneers to give you the most natural-looking smile possible.
Deciding if Veneers are Right for You
Part of your decision process should be finding out whether you need a full set or partial veneers. Veneers are fully customizable, from the shape of teeth to the color of the finish. If a single tooth is chipped or has discoloration in a single area, a veneer can be designed to cover just that area of that tooth.
The care of veneers is nothing more than good oral hygiene habits. Regular brushing and flossing is usually all that is required. Veneers are strong and able to withstand most foods. However, they can be chipped if you chomp on ice or bite your nails. No matter how you treat them, veneers will never discolor.
The other important factor is to consider your budget. Veneers are not inexpensive, but they will provide one of the longest-lasting cosmetic restorations of your smile. Many patients consider veneers to be the most cost-effective cosmetic procedure, producing an end result that gives them the smile they always wanted.
Making the decision to move forward with veneers is a committment to your future oral health and self-confidence. Make your appointment for an initial consultation and get ready to change your smile!