31 Mar Veneers: Great Alternative to Adult Braces?
Cracked or discolored teeth can leave you lacking confidence and embarrassed about your smile. You may have looked into different remedies, but are feeling hesitant about cosmetic dentistry. But if you’re looking for a confident, bright smile — without the hassle of braces or similar alternatives — veneers may be the perfect option for you! With veneers, you can have a reliable and lasting solution for a lifetime of beautiful smiles.
Veneers are perfect for teeth that are chipped, discolored, or have other cosmetic issues. These thin shells lay over your teeth and come in two types — composite resin or porcelain. Your dentist will need to remove some enamel for them to fit properly, and they’re permanently attached to your teeth. Not everyone is a good candidate for veneers, so you’ll need to talk to your dentist to see if you qualify, but they may be an alternative to traditional metal braces.
Reasons to Get Veneers
While tooth enamel may be the hardest substance in the body, it’s still susceptible to the effects of daily wear and tear. This can result in a smile that’s not as bright as it used to be, which can affect your self-confidence.
Popular reasons to get veneers include:
- Chipped or broken teeth
- Discolored teeth
- Teeth that have been worn down
- Teeth with gaps or misalignments
Chipped teeth are the result of weakened enamel. You may have experienced a chipped or cracked tooth while chewing something hard. Veneers are the perfect way to restore the look and strength of a chipped or cracked tooth.
Discolored teeth can occur for a variety of reasons. They’re often the result of years of stains from what we eat and drink. However, they can also be caused by root canals, medications, fillings, or even excessive fluoride.
Excessive teeth grinding can lead to worn-down teeth if not corrected. Also known as bruxism, teeth grinding can cause much more than a less-than-ideal smile. It can also result in a heightened risk of teeth sensitivity or even gum disease.
Sometimes teeth can have natural gaps or misalignments. In these situations, veneers can make a great alternative to metal braces, clear aligners, and a lifetime of wearing a retainer.
What are veneers?
Veneers are thin shells that are placed over the front of your teeth. They can be made of different materials to restore the original appearance of your teeth. The process for attaching veneers is more intensive and involves permanently reshaping your tooth so that the veneers will fit.
Types of Veneers
Dental veneers come in two different types: porcelain and resin composite. Both are designed to match and improve the appearance of your original teeth and are applied the same way. However, there are some important differences between the two.
Porcelain veneers require more time to be applied to your teeth. You’ll need to plan for two dental appointments for the whole process, not including your initial consultation. They’re more expensive on the front-end, and can be expensive to repair if they’re damaged as well. Unlike resin composite veneers, porcelain veneers will need to be completely replaced if they become damaged.
On the upside, they’re more durable and have a more toothlike appearance.
Resin composites can be perfect if you want a faster solution. While they aren’t as durable as porcelain varieties, they’re less expensive on the front-end and cheaper to repair.
How Veneers are Put on Your Teeth
The process for applying veneers will differ depending on the type you get. Both types require an initial consultation and reshaping of the teeth so the veneers will fit. However, resin composites usually require less grinding and can be applied in one session.
During the session, your dentist will find a shade for your new veneers that suit you best. They will then use a special light to speed up the bonding process and smooth out any rough areas. This will give you a brighter smile all in one visit.
Porcelain veneers take a bit longer than resin composites, requiring two visits to your dentist. The first visit will be spent removing enamel from your teeth to make room for your veneers. You will be given temporary veneers to wear until your permanent ones come in. Your dentist will find your shade and make molds of your teeth to be sent to the lab.
A custom set of veneers will be sent from the lab in a couple of weeks. You’ll come in for a second visit once they’ve arrived and your dentist will double-check to make sure they’ll fit. Once any necessary adjustments have been made, the veneers will be bonded to your teeth for your new smile!
Caring for Veneers
One of the biggest benefits of veneers is that they don’t require intensive aftercare. Caring for your veneers is just like caring for your original teeth! To get the absolute best from your veneers, make sure that you are:
- Brushing for two minutes, twice per day
- Using fluoride toothpaste
- Flossing at least once a day after eating
- Rinsing with fluoride mouthwash
- Making your regular dental appointments
- Eating a diet that supports dental health
- Avoid teeth-staining tobacco products
The main concern for people with veneers is chipping. Be careful when chewing hard foods such as almonds or ice.
Another concern is staining. Porcelain veneers are stain-resistant, but they’re not stain-proof. Sparingly drink red wine, tea, or coffee. Some dentists recommend avoiding them altogether if you have veneers.
Do I qualify for dental veneers?
Not everyone who’s interested in veneers will qualify for them. Unfortunately, there are certain oral health conditions that can exclude you from eligibility. Our team will check for these conditions during your initial consultation to establish whether you’re an ideal candidate or not.
We’ll check for:
- Extensive tooth decay
- Gum disease
- Fractured teeth
- Large fillings
Healthy enamel is essential for a successful veneers procedure. We take an in-depth look at your enamel health to ensure that your veneers are long-lasting and have a great fit.
Veneers are a great solution for teeth with cosmetic issues such as chips, discoloration, gaps, or are misaligned. They come in thin porcelain and resin composite varieties that are attached to the front of your teeth to restore their original appearance. Caring for your veneers is just like caring for your teeth, so you don’t have to worry about any extra work. Not everyone will qualify for veneers so your dentist will want to do a consultation to see if you’re a good candidate.
Want to learn more about how veneers can improve your smile? Contact us today to schedule your consultation!
Knoxville Family Dental has two locations in Knoxville to better serve you. You can call Knoxville West at (865) 691-1121 or you can schedule an appointment online. To make an appointment with Knoxville East, call (865) 544-1711 or make an appointment online.