If your smile has a minor flaw, a veneer could be a good solution. Mercier Dental’s team and dentist know that your smile is important to you, and we want to make sure it’s healthy and gorgeous. High-quality veneers provide several benefits for a few different issues, from discolorations to chips. The process is often quick and simple, with discomfort so minimal that anesthetic might not even be required, but once it is done, it cannot be reversed. This is why it’s important to know as much as possible about veneers before deciding to get them.
What is a dental veneer and what is it used for?
A dental veneer is a thin, strong piece of either porcelain or resin that can be applied over the front of a tooth. Each veneer is custom made to fit your tooth, and veneers give a beautiful, natural look to your teeth while correcting various problems. A veneer covers flaws in your tooth, such as stains and discolorations, chips, cracks, small gaps between teeth, and even minor misalignments that don’t affect your bite. We’ll check the health of your teeth and gums to ensure a veneer is the best step, and then we’ll use advanced technology to etch the veneer to exactly fit your tooth, as well as make it similar to the shape and color of your other teeth.
How is a veneer placed?
A dental veneer is placed through two office visits—the first to take an impression of your tooth and place a temporary veneer, and the second to get the permanent veneer placed after it has been custom made by our laboratory.
To place the veneer, there are usually several steps involved.
First, we’ll clean your tooth and choose the right shade of veneer to use so it matches the shade of your own teeth. Then, we’ll take a small amount of enamel off the tooth that the veneer will be placed on to allow for more room and to make it look more natural. This step is why getting a veneer is an irreversible process, as the removal of enamel will leave the interior of the tooth exposed and vulnerable if the veneer is not placed and kept on it. If you opt for a custom, lab-made veneer, this is when the temporary veneer is placed, and it will be removed at your next visit.
After the enamel and temporary veneer (if you had one) have been removed, we’ll rinse your tooth again, etch the permanent veneer for a custom look, and then finally apply the veneer with cement in a precise fitting. Once the veneer is on, it gets cured with light for a minute to further help it bond to the tooth. The final step of the process is shaving away excess material and polishing the veneer to give a natural, finished look.
When taken care of, veneers can last a decade or more, but they are susceptible to chipping and may need to be replaced after several years. They’re a permanent solution to minor problems, which is what makes them a great choice, but given that the process is irreversible, you need to be sure veneers are what you want. Dr. Mercier and our team can help you decide if a veneer is right for you.