Porcelain laminate veneers are probably the most aesthetic means of creating a more pleasing and beautiful smile. They require a minimal amount of tooth reduction (approximately .5 mm) and are, therefore, a more conservative restoration than a crown.
Porcelain veneers allow us to alter tooth position, shape, size and color. They are not the only alternative for all aesthetic abnormalities but are truly a remarkable restoration when they are the treatment of choice.
Veneers are a fantastic way to fix front teeth. You can whiten your teeth, close spaces, and create a great smile. We can even do virtually instant orthodontics to straighten crooked teeth.
- Spaces between the teeth (diastemas)
- Broken or chipped teeth
- Unsightly, stained or washed out fillings
- Permanently stained or discolored teeth Misshapen or crooked teeth
- Whiten dark yellow or stained teeth
Have you ever wished you had better-looking teeth without all the hassle of braces (orthodontics) or crowns (caps)? NOW YOU CAN! Porcelain veneers are the answer for instant orthodontics to straighten smiles, close spaces, reshape, and accomplish minor realignment of your teeth. You can even have that “Hollywood” smile you’ve always wanted.
Veneers are very thin and are bonded on the front of your anterior teeth. These veneers are about 0.3mm to 0.5mm in thickness but are very strong once bonded to your teeth. They have a “life like” appearance with the strength, beauty, and durability only porcelain restorations can afford. Veneers have several advantages over crowns (caps). There is no “dark line” that is sometimes seen with older front caps. They transmit light better and, therefore, have a more translucent appearance giving a natural, aesthetic look. Veneers do not require the massive grinding of tooth structure that caps do, yet, they accomplish a lifelike aesthetic result.
How’s it done? After a thorough discussion with us to establish just what you wish to accomplish AND establish what can or can not be done, your first appointment usually involves some minor contouring of the front teeth and taking an impression of the teeth. The veneers are tried in, and, if satisfactory, they are bonded in place. A follow up visit is made in a week. The results are instant and spectacular! Many times, we combine whitening with porcelain veneers to make that perfect smile. If some front teeth are already badly broken down, we can place new all porcelain crowns combined with veneering and other cosmetic techniques. Usually, we can give you that smile you have always wanted.
We utilize both IPS Empress and feldspathic porcelain for the highest quality veneers.
Since they require approximately .5mm of tooth reduction, porcelain veneers are NOT considered a reversible form of treatment.
The laboratory time required for the fabrication of a Porcelain Laminate Veneer is approximately two weeks. Between your preparation visit and the insertion visit, you can expect some sensitivity to hot and cold. This is normal and is due to the removal of a small portion of the enamel covering of the tooth. This sensitivity should disappear after the placement of your Porcelain Laminate Veneer.
Your second visit, the insertion of your laminate, can be accomplished with or without local anesthetic, but typically a small amount of anesthesia is preferable. This visit is usually longer in length. The laminates are placed with a light sensitive resin which is hardened by using a white light.
Once placed your laminates are very strong and will resist most of the forces placed upon them by a normal diet. Porcelain has great crushing strength but poor tensile strength. Therefore, you should avoid anything that will tend to twist the laminate. Opening pistachio nuts with your teeth, chewing on bones or jelly apples is probably not a good idea. As with most things, common sense should prevail.
The maintenance of your Porcelain Laminate Veneer is relatively simple. A few suggestions, however, are in order:
- Please brush and floss as you normally would to prevent oral hygiene problems.
- Once placed, Porcelain Laminate Veneers are typically the kindest restoration to the gum tissues that we currently have in our prosthetic armamentarium.
- Do not be afraid that you will damage your laminates by either flossing or brushing.
- Any nonabrasive tooth paste is acceptable. A good home care regimen will insure the aesthetic success of your laminate restorations for years to come.
Some sensitivity to hot and cold may be experienced after the placement of your veneers. This relates to the amount of enamel left on your tooth after preparation, the proximity of the nerve as well as several other factors. Some sensitivity is absolutely normal and usually dissipates after one-two weeks. If this sensitivity should remain or concern you at all, please call our office.
As mentioned before, a normal diet should pose no problem at all. Please avoid anything that will tend to bend or twist the laminates.
If you are known to be a bruxer or clencher, please let us know. We will fabricate an NTI (nightguard) for you to wear to minimize the stresses placed upon your teeth while you sleep. Approximately one week after the placement of your laminates you will be asked to return to the office for a treatment evaluation. This visit is extremely important. It gives us the opportunity to evaluate the placement of the laminates, the tissue response and to answer any questions you might have regarding your new smile.
We hope that your Porcelain Laminate Veneers have fulfilled all of your aesthetic goals. With proper home care and scheduled evaluation visits, they can provide you with a beautiful smile for years to come.
For more information on Porcelain Veneers see our article titled Porcelain Veneers Q&A