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Veneers:  What You Need to Know

Veneers are thin porcelain shells that are placed over your existing teeth to mask any imperfections. They are a long-term solution, usually lasting from ten to twenty years. Veneers can be the answer for several problems, including misshapen, uneven, or discolored teeth. They are customized for you by color, shape, and size.

What You Need to Know

Veneers are not a quick, one-visit solution where you receive a brand new smile in one day. There are multiple steps required for the process. For example, a smile analysis must be done first to determine whether or not you are a candidate for this procedure. You should tell your dentist what you hope to achieve with veneers so he or she can determine what the best procedure is for you.

Here are some other things you need to know:

  • Temporary veneers are worn first.  This is done to give you an idea of how your permanent veneers will feel and look. This time is also used to determine any additional changes that may be needed.
  • Your natural teeth will need to be reduced.  This is necessary so that the veneers will fit and stay on your teeth. The amount of reduction needed varies from patient to patient.
  • There will be some discomfort.  However, several things can be done to ensure the procedure is not painful, including Novocaine and laughing gas. Some patients do experience some soreness at the gum line during the first day, which can be easily treated with acetaminophen or ibuprofen.
  • They won't last forever.  As mentioned above, after ten or twenty years of wear and tear, your veneers can chip or break. Also, your gums may recede and reveal some of your natural teeth.
  • You decide how you want your smile to look.  This will require measurements of your bite, enamel, and pulp tissue. They determine the thickness of your veneers for the most natural look.

For a successful outcome, you must be committed an oral hygiene routine that includes brushing two to three times per day, and flossing once per day. If you are ready to make the change to improve your smile, schedule a consultation with your dentist. He or she can answer any additional questions you may have.