If your smile is less than perfect, dental veneers may be the best solution. These thin, tooth-colored restorations are placed over the front of teeth, enabling them to produce a strong, healthy and beautiful appearance to teeth that have been impacted by:
- Chipped or cracked enamel
- Crooked tooth presentation
- Uneven or irregular tooth shapes and sizes
- Gaps and spaces between teeth
- Severe, below the enamel stains
Porcelain is an incredibly durable substance. Resistant to stains and scratches, porcelain also reflects light in the same way as tooth enamel, further enabling veneers to produce a life-like and completely natural-looking, albeit much more attractive, smile.
How Thick are Porcelain Veneers?
Generally speaking, dental veneers are around .5 millimeters in size. This enables the porcelain to maintain its natural translucency and better mimic tooth enamel while also allowing veneers to fit over teeth with very little preparation. However, while very thin, veneers are still too dense to be placed on top of unprepared teeth.
To place dental veneers, a small amount of your natural tooth enamel will need to be removed. This gentle contouring of the teeth allows veneers to fit snugly and perfectly into the smile. It will also make the process irreversible.
Tooth enamel does not grow back. It can be fortified, but it cannot be restored. Once the enamel has been removed for the placement of veneers, it will be necessary to keep veneers or another restoration, such as dental bonding, in place at all times. Fortunately, this poses little to no problem for most patients. Veneers, when cared for properly, can last for decades and can be replaced individually as needed to keep the smile flawless without requiring a complete smile makeover.
Are There No-Prep Veneers?
There are dental veneers that do not require tooth preparation. Lumineers®, the brand with the most name recognition, is a no-prep veneer manufactured in China. At around .3mm thick, Lumineers® are suitable for some patients, but not thin enough to place without preparation for all.
We offer Durathin® veneers. Manufactured in Utah, these no-prep veneers are thinner than Lumineers®, making them easier to place without first removing tooth enamel. However, because they are not as thick as the traditional veneers we offer, they are not as effective at addressing pronounced cosmetic imperfections.
We have found that prep-less dental veneers are suitable for around 25% of patients. Call today to schedule a free consultation and learn if you are one of them.
Porcelain Veneer Durability
MAC Veneers are stronger, more durable, and more life-like than many other brands of dental veneer. This is one of the main reasons we have chosen to place this brand. When cared for properly, MAC veneers can last for 20 years or more.
While much thinner, Durathin® veneers are also able to produce results for years at a time. As with traditional porcelain veneers, with proper care, no-prep dental veneers can be expected to produce results for 20 years or more.
How do I Care for My Veneers?
To care for dental veneers, do:
- Use a soft-bristle toothbrush and nonabrasive toothpaste to brush after every meal and snack
- Floss in between all teeth before brushing both morning and night
- Visit our office for biannual cleanings and examinations
To keep your veneers strong and attractive, do not:
- Bite ice, hard candy, or non-food items
- Grind your teeth
- Use an abrasive toothpaste
- Use a mouthwash with alcohol
Following these simple steps can help keep your veneers strong and attractive for decades at a time. During your routine visits to our office, we will provide you with individual recommendations as well, helping to ensure your smile remains healthy and beautiful for life.
Contact Desert Smiles to Learn More
To schedule a free cosmetic dentistry consultation at our Glendale office, please call 602-978-1790 today. We welcome patients from Scottsdale, Phoenix, Mesa, and all surrounding areas of Arizona.