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Crook Log Dental Practice answer your questions on Veneers

21 / 07 / 2015

What are veneers?

A veneer is a thin layer made from porcelain or composite, it sits over the tooth and masks the tooth’s appearance – almost like a false nail.

Veneers are used to improve the shape and colour of teeth. In some cases when braces are not an option having veneers can also give teeth a straighter appearance.

Veneers can be made at a larger size, different shape and shade to your natural teeth, so if you wanted that ‘Hollywood smile’ white bright and perfectly straight – Veneers may be the option.

As veneers are only a thin layer, the preparation work is very minimal and in enamel sometimes no preparation of the tooth is needed.

A consultation / dental examination is needed before any cosmetic work is done, your dentist will be able to talk you through the options of veneers as well as other possible options e.g. braces and teeth whitening.

If you decide to go for veneers we always recommend a ‘diagnostic wax-up’ for our patients. This involves us taking a mould of your teeth and sending them to a laboratory. We explain what look you would like to achieve and they will make a model out of wax that will be able to show the final result.

There are 2 types of Veneers;

Porcelain veneers

Porcelain veneers are made in a laboratory. This involves coming in for 2 appointments, the first one would be for Veneer prepare where the dentist will prep your tooth (if needed) and take a mould of your teeth to send to the laboratory. It normally takes 2 weeks for your veneers to be made and sent back to us to fit. During these 2 weeks you will be left with temporary veneers which the dentist will make look like the veneers you will be fitted with. We call this the ‘Trial-Smile’, this helps our patients to get used to the ‘new’ shape and style of their teeth.

Composite veneers

Composite veneers are made in surgery free hand by your dentist. The dentist will follow the wax up guide and build up a thin layer of composite material directly on to your tooth and mask over it. You will see the final result at the end of this appointment.

Composite veneers are the less expensive option; however they don’t last as long as porcelain veneers and will need regular polishing as they can pick up slight staining.

How long will it take?

1st appointment: A dental check up / consultation.

2nd appointment: impressions to make the moulds for the diagnostic wax up.

3rd appointment (10 days after): to view and discuss your wax up.

4th appointment: veneer preparations

5th appointment: review ‘trial smile’

6th appointment (approx 2 weeks after): veneer fit

7th appointment (7-10 days after): review

So on average it takes just under 2 months to get your new smile.

It is as important to us as to our patients to get treatment right so occasionally there might be some extra appointments and it may take longer but your dentist will tell you this and always keep you updated.

How long do veneers last?

Porcelain veneers last on average about 10-15 years and composite veneers 5-7 years with good maintenance.

Can porcelain veneers de-bond?

Although unlikely, anything added on to your natural teeth always has a risk of coming off. If this happens, make sure you hold on to the veneer and we can easily re-cement it on for you.

Can I whiten veneers?

Unfortunately veneers cannot be whitened. We will always recommend whitening prior to having any cosmetic work done, as we will match the veneers to the current shade of your teeth.

Do you have any pictures to show an example?

Yes, on our website we have pictures of both types of veneers and different cases that we have treated; the link to this can be found below.

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