Know All About Veneering


How Do I Fix Cracked Teeth?

Many individuals face discolouring of the enamel of their teeth from a bright white to a dull yellow due to a number of factors including heavy drinking, smoking, intake of certain antibiotics or because of the general ageing process. Teeth may also get damaged due to chips and cracks. People may even be genetically disposed to having large gaps between their teeth, called diastemas or have misaligned/crooked teeth. These problems affect the individual’s smile, which in turn lowers their self esteem. As a solution to this, many individuals rely on veneering of teeth to correct such deformities.


Veneering can help you get rid of discolored, dull yellow teeth and cover crooked teeth.

What Is Veneering?

The process of veneering or attaching porcelain veneers on the surface of one’s teeth helps to correct damaged and discoloured teeth.

Who Are The Ideal Candidates For A Veneering Procedure?

Any person unhappy with the colour of their teeth can opt for veneers. It is important to keep realistic expectations in mind. Some patients who opt for this procedure include:

People who have worn down, chipped or broken teeth.

Individuals with irregularly shaped teeth that may have bumps or craters, which can be covered up with veneers.

People who have gaps or widely spaced teeth. This can be fixed with veneering.

Individuals who have discoloured teeth. This is the most common reason why people opt for this procedure. Smoking, some medications and root canals often change teeth colour, and veneers help to cover them up.

What Are The Different Types Of Veneering?

Dental Veneers are shells, made as a cap to cover the tooth and improve its appearance. There are several different kinds of materials that are used to make veneers and these include:

  • Composite resin veneers: These are commonly used to fix small issues like chipped or cracked teeth. These veneers can be shaped at your appointment.
  • Instant veneers: These are pre-made veneers that have an assortment of shades and styles. These veneers do not require remodeling as they come in custom shapes and sizes, so the appointment time is usually shorter than the time taken in placing the other types of veneers.
  • Removable veneers: Also known as the “snap on smile,” removable veneers can be worn over your existing teeth. A cast of your teeth is taken and a set of veneers are made that can be designed based on your desired shade and style.
  • Porcelain veneers: These veneers are expensive and require several appointments to get them fitted in. These veneers are resistant to staining and last much longer than other types of veneers.



What To Do Before A Veneering Procedure?

  • Your teeth needs to brushed and mouth needs to be rinsed with mouthwash before the procedure.
  • Smoking should be stopped two weeks prior to the procedure. Although this is not an invasive procedure, the effect of smoking negatively affects the new veneers that will be implanted.
  • You may take prescription medication advised by your physician. Any alterations in the course should be inquired about, prior to your procedure.
    Wear comfortable clothing on your appointment days.

What Is The Post-Operative Care For A Veneering Procedure?

Any postoperative discomfort during recovery can be taken care of by over-the-counter pain medications.

Daily brushing and flossing is vital. The veneers go through the same changes as the teeth under it, so it is important to take similar care.

A soft diet is recommended for the first few days after the procedure. It will take some time before you get adjusted to the new structure of your teeth.

A follow-up dental appointment should be made to check if the procedure has been successful.

Realistic Expectations About Dental Veneering

For best veneering results, it is best to have realistic expectations about the procedure.

  • While veneers can mask gaps and make teeth looking like natural ones, they cannot mask misalignments if the overall structure of the teeth has been affected.
  • The veneer treatment cannot be reversed, though the veneers can be adjusted.
  • After the surgeon takes the tooth impressions, veneers take at least 5-7 days to be made in the laboratory.
  • Although hard, the shells are liable to break under stress like opening bottles or biting nails.
  • Veneers require regular after care through brushing and flossing, like natural teeth, to maintain their polish and whiteness.
  • Even after a veneering procedure, your tooth can develop cavities while the porcelain material will remain unaffected.
  • Most porcelain veneers last between 7-20 years.

What Are The Pros And Cons Of Veneering?

  • Pros

  • Cons

  • Stain/Scratch resistant: Veneers, particularly porcelain veneers do not develop scratches or plaque stains over the period of their life.
  • Long lasting: Veneers are less prone to damages or fractures. They are known to be durable for longer durations. Typically, people can wear veneers for atleast a decade.
  • Obscuring imperfections: Veneers benefit the patient by hiding imperfections in the teeth structure and covering the inter-tooth gaps and stained enamels.
  • Extremely natural: Veneers are exceptionally lifelike and give more of an original look to the teeth. Thus, a person can achieve a natural tooth structure along with a gleaming smile.

  • Alteration of teeth: To fit the veneers, the tooth in focus needs to be altered or partially shed. This leads to weakening of the healthy teeth. Customized veneers are created with proper measurements to ensure minimum loss to the teeth.
  • Irreversible: The procedure of placing veneers is not reversible that is, once you get a veneer there is no way back. Careful consideration and diagnosis is required before opting this treatment. However, properly placed veneers rarely develop any complications.
  • Sensitivity due to dentine exposure: Efforts should be made by dentists to ensure less exposure to the dentine. This exposure may lead to sensitivity problems. However, sensitivity disappears in a week after the permanent veneers are fit.
  • Pricey: Veneers have high costs, charging on average $1000 per tooth. But, affordable and quality solutions also exist over the globe.

Who Should Avoid A Veneering Procedure?

  1. People who want to change the shape of their teeth considerably due to extensive damage are better candidates for dental crowns.
  2. People who are only looking for a whiter color and no changes in shape should consider teeth whitening and not veneers.
  3. People with crooked dental arch or badly aligned teeth should not opt for veneers but for orthodontic treatment like braces.
  4. People who grind or clench their teeth often should not opt for the procedure as the veneers can be easily broken by the movement.
  5. If you have decayed teeth and suffer from periodontal diseases that cause itching, redness and swelling in gums, then you may not be able to undergo a veneering procedure.



What Are The Alternatives To Veneering?

Many individuals may however consider other cheaper alternatives, that provide similar, albeit not perfect results. 

Tooth bleaching is a common option which can help whiten discolored teeth. It is a relatively cheaper and less time taking process. However this approach is not permanent, needs periodic renewals and does not help to correct the alignment of crooked teeth. 

Microbrasion which involves erosion of the thin blemished outer layer of the tooth enamel using coarse polishing compounds, is also a permanent solution to improve the appearance of the teeth. However, it is unpredictable and may not always be successful.

Orthodontic treatments can also prove to be an effective alternative to veneers, but it is a more invasive and long drawn procedure. Esthetic tooth recontouring can also be chosen, which involves making minimal changes to the shape and structure of teeth by trimming the blunt edges and rounding off corners. 

The most widely used alternative to veneering is dental bonding. Here, dental composite (white filling material) is used to mask individual cosmetic imperfections like chips, divots and stains. While this approach is less expensive and minimally intrusive, it may not provide a natural look and may not hold as long as porcelain veneers.



Does Veneering Lead To Scarring?

Scars are not of a main concern after veneer placement. Once veneers are placed, they last anywhere from 10-15 years, with proper care.



What Are The Temporary Side-Effects Of Veneering?

Dental veneers are an exceedingly safe procedure with minimal complications apart from the risk of breaking the thin shell in the case of application of extreme force. Here are some side-effects of the procedure that are temporary and common.

  1. Sensitivity - A portion of tooth enamel might be removed to fit the veneers for your procedure, resulting in increased sensation of hot and cold. The feeling is minimal and heals eventually.
  2. Discomfort - The veneering procedure can cause slight discomfort and pain. It can be easily dealt with over the counter pain medications prescribed by your dentist.
  3. Gum tissue response - Sometimes, your gum tissue can take a while to adjust to the veneer, causing mild discomfort or inflammation. This can be looked into in the post-operative check up at the dentist’s office.



Choosing A Surgeon For A Veneering Procedure?

The straightness and whiteness of your veneers depend on the ability of the surgeon who casts your veneers. The veneers can be best made by a dental ceramist and not a regular oral surgeon.
It is important to ask your dentist his experience in performing the veneering procedure. Generally, a cosmetic dentist who has performed near a thousand surgeries will be qualified to perform your procedure.
Ask your dentist a number of questions like the required post-operative care and life of the veneers to assess whether he has adequate knowledge on the procedure.
Ensure whether your doctor is able to use the latest technological tools required for your procedure like lasers, intraoral imaging, etc.
Your surgeon should also present to you a number of options in the tooth shape, color and size.

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