Porcelain veneers are thin, custom manufactured porcelain shells that are designed to cover the front of your teeth for improved aesthetic appearance.

Porcelain Veneers can help:

  • Teeth that have been chipped.
  • Teeth that have been broken.
  • Teeth that have been worn down.
  • Teeth that are misaligned, uneven or irregularly shaped.
  • Teeth with gaps in between them.
  • Teeth that have become discoloured.

What is the procedure for porcelain veneers?

Porcelain veneers require three separate sessions at the dentist.

  1. Diagnosis and Treatment Planning – this includes a dental examination and open discussion as to what the procedure will involve and be able to achieve. This session will also include any X-rays and/or impressions of your mouth that are required.
  2. Preparation – This appointment will include the trimming of the enamel off your teeth, whilst locally anesthetised, and the taking of an impression of your teeth. This will then be sent to the laboratory and made over the course of 1 to 2 weeks. You will be fitted with temporary veneers during the interim, which will require careful eating habits, no flossing and normal teeth brushing.
  3. Bonding – this last appointment will entail the permanent bonding of the dental veneers to your teeth, ensuring that it fits and looks right. Your teeth will be cleaned, polished and etched in preparation, with the veneer placed on your tooth using a special glue cement and light beam. The final steps will include a bite evaluation and any last adjustments as necessary. You may be asked for a follow-up visit to re-examine the placement in the future. Lastly, a night guard impression will be taken to protect your veneers while you sleep.

What are the advantages/disadvantages of custom dental veneers?

Advantages

  • Natural tooth appearance.
  • Stain resistant.
  • Selective colouring to whiten your teeth.
  • Simpler and cheaper alternative to crowns.
  • Lasting treatment, sometimes for many years when applied professionally and cared for regularly.

Disadvantages

  • Possibly not strong enough for those with a strong bite.
  • Possibility of popping off in unusual circumstances.
  • Further cosmetic changes are limited as not a lot of the tooth structure is changed.

Is it hard to look after porcelain veneers?

Porcelain veneers do not require any special care, but the underlying tooth still requires regular attention to prevent decay and/or gum disease. Regular oral hygiene appointments, daily brushing and flossing, and avoiding particularly hard sweets, toffees and bones will all help look after your veneers. You can also prevent putting your teeth under stress by wearing your night guard while you sleep.