Cosmetic porcelain veneers are typically viewed as the gold standard in smile makeovers. Depending on the width of your smile, you can get anywhere from 6-10 veneers to completely change the way your teeth look.
Before investing in something as life changing as veneers can be, it’s important to know the “pros” and “cons” of this popular Raleigh cosmetic dentistry treatment. Here are some things to keep in mind.
Dental Veneers Pros:
The Results are Immediate
Once your dental veneers are placed on your teeth, it’s an immediate night-and-day difference in how your smile is now vs. beforehand. Although veneers technically take two appointments to complete (a prep visit and then a final placement) the process is essentially “instant” when you compare it to a lot of other options out there.
When you want to quickly change everything about the way your teeth look, veneers are the best option. You can pick how the teeth are shaped, their color, width, contour, etc.
Anytime you think of a Hollywood smile makeover, it typically involves dental veneers. Since little else needs to be done—like braces, whitening, recontouring—veneers are the “once and done” solution a lot of people are looking for.
If you’re hoping for a quick makeover, just make sure you plan in advance. After the initial consultation and first prep visit, it’s about two weeks before the permanent ones are ready to bond into place.
One of the great things about veneers is that they make your teeth look instantly straighter. If you have minor issues such as crowding, small gaps between teeth, or a little overlapping here or there, your veneer case plan can be mapped out to erase those flaws from your smile.
Since each veneer is handcrafted as part of a set, they’re shaped in a way that complements its neighbors. Placing one veneer on one tooth probably wouldn’t fix the issue, but placing six of them across several teeth can make it look like you just finished treatment with braces or Invisalign.
Some people call veneers “instant braces” since they offer a quick solution for crooked or crowded teeth. As long as your bite meets certain criteria, veneers are extremely effective for masking crooked teeth. The key is to work with an experienced cosmetic dentist who can ensure the best results.
Transform Everything About Your Smile
There’s probably not anything that veneers can’t change about your teeth. For someone who feels embarrassed by the way their teeth look, veneers can be life changing. The confidence of knowing your smile looks and feels great can give your confidence the boost it needs to meet new people, smile in pictures, or do well in that next job interview.
When you’re planning a smile makeover with dental veneers, we’ll want to understand what you hope to change about your current smile. Is there something that bothers you? Let us know. We’ll work to discuss what options are available to quickly mask those concerns, giving you quick cosmetic results that you’ll feel great about showing off.
No matter what your natural smile looks like, porcelain veneers can help to change that. They bond directly on top of your natural teeth and that’s all people will see when you’re smiling.
You Can Choose How They Look
From the size and shape to color and hue, veneers truly allow you to tailor exactly what you want your smile to look like. Everything from the margins, length, and width of your teeth is adjustable. You can even elect to have minor irregularities placed into the porcelain to further enhance the lifelike appeal of your smile transformation.
As part of your smile makeover, you’ll want to share what you want (or don’t want) your smile to look like. Having photos of other smiles is a great way to communicate with our cosmetic dentist about your goals. We will work with you to adjust the specifications of your veneers so that you’re thrilled with the final outcome.
For major smile makeovers, we also perform what’s called a “wax up”. This step in your smile design allows you to visually see and preview the recommended veneers before the permanent versions are made in the lab.
Dental Veneers Last for Years
Well maintained dental veneers can last for several years, similar to a porcelain crown or dental filling. With good oral hygiene and regular checkups, you can expect your veneer investment to go with you for years.
Taking care of veneers is as simple as caring for your natural teeth. Brushing twice a day and daily flossing are essential. Use an extra-soft of soft toothbrush and non-abrasive toothpaste. Flossing will not pull your veneers off; it’s important to floss around them routinely to prevent any weakening or decay in the tooth behind your veneer (since veneers only cover the front of your smile.)
Since veneers keep their color permanently, there’s no need to bleach your teeth at any point. Just be sure to limit your coffee, tea, red wine, or other dark liquid intake (since they can cause staining on top of your dental work—but don’t worry, your hygienist can polish it off) and have your teeth cleaned routinely. If you are enjoying something dark like tea, rinse with water well afterward. Or consider drinking through a straw to limit contact time with your veneers.
Dental Veneers Cons:
Are there any disadvantages to dental veneers? Depending on your viewpoint, yes. Here are a few of the “cons” you’ll want to consider before making the investment in a smile makeover.
Dental Veneers are Not Invincible
Porcelain veneers are extremely durable, but there’ not indestructible. If you clench and grind your teeth, the porcelain could fracture. And if it does, it’s not physically possible to patch over and repair that minor area of damage; the entire dental veneer would need to be replaced.
Fortunately, you have an option to help protect them: a mouthguard. Sleeping in a custom night guard offers the best level of protection. That way if you clench your teeth so much that you start to wear through the guard, you can just have it replaced (instead of paying for new veneers.)
Make sure you don’t use your teeth to open packages or bite your nails. The end-to-end biting action can fracture dental veneers and is a common mistake that people make.
Some Teeth Cannot Be Treated
Unfortunately, some teeth don’t qualify for dental veneers. Since veneers are purely for aesthetic purposes, they cannot be placed onto teeth with large cavities or significant fractures. Your teeth need to be structurally sound in order to support a cosmetic veneer.
Similarly, if you have gum disease around the tooth that is to be treated, we cannot place a veneer on the tooth. There needs to be a completely stable foundation around your tooth before any aesthetic treatment can be applied.
And finally, we can’t place dental veneers on teeth that are too severely overlapped or that hit end-to-end with other teeth. There does need to be a minor amount of room for the veneer to look and function naturally. Otherwise, it could create unwanted results and further oral health complications.
You Usually Can’t Put Them on Lower Front Teeth
In almost every smile makeover, dental veneers are only placed on the upper front teeth—the ones in your smile zone. Typically, we try to avoid putting them on lower front teeth, even if they’re slightly visible when you smile. The better option is to whiten or contour those teeth instead of placing full veneers on them.
Why are veneers contraindicated for lower front teeth in most cases? Because of how those teeth bite against your upper front teeth. If they slightly tap or hit behind your top teeth, it can cause the lower front veneers to chip or break. As mentioned previously, chipped veneers have to be replaced entirely, as they cannot be patched over.
You Need Several at One Time
Last but not least, the final disadvantage (if you want to call it that) of dental veneers is that they’re typically placed in sets of several at a time. It’s fairly uncommon to have a stand-alone veneer on just one tooth, unless there are significant cosmetic irregularities in that said tooth.
By crafting several dental veneers at one time, you can ensure consistency across your smile for the best aesthetic outcome. However, the investment in several veneers at one time will obviously impact the total cost of your smile makeover. So, if you’re hoping to only pay for one dental veneer, that might be counterintuitive to what you’re hoping to achieve. Other options may be available, so be sure to discuss your concerns with our Raleigh cosmetic dentist.
Dental Veneer Consultation in Raleigh
Raleigh Dental Arts provides life-changing cosmetic dentistry options, including porcelain veneers. If you’re self-conscious about the way your teeth look and want to finally invest in your smile, gorgeous dental veneers are an excellent choice.
Contact our Raleigh cosmetic dentists today to reserve a consultation and find out if you qualify.