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If discoloration, a chipped or misaligned tooth, or even small gaps between your teeth have turned your smile upside-down, porcelain veneers can bring back your confidence. Veneers restore the appearance of teeth that are in overall good health but need small fixes in color, shape, size, or positioning. Our experienced dentist in Bonita Springs is happy to discuss your needs to determine if this cosmetic treatment is right for you.
What is a Porcelain Veneer?
Veneers are layers of thin dental porcelain that mimic tooth enamel. They adhere securely but comfortably to the front surface of a tooth like shield. They’re a good option to correct aesthetic concerns such as:
- Size and shape: There’s nothing like a chipped tooth to make you feel less pulled together than you’d like, especially with an important event such as a job interview or a wedding on the horizon. Veneers can not only make chipped teeth look like new; they also can lengthen teeth that have been shortened because of bruxism, also called tooth grinding. What’s more, if you’ve always thought your natural teeth looked too small, too big, too square, or too round for your face, veneers can change the overall shape of your teeth so they flatter your features better.
- Tooth Color: Coffee, tea, certain medications, tobacco products, and even aging all can contribute to our teeth looking yellow, discolored, or dingy. If your teeth haven’t responded to whitening treatments as well as you’d like – or if you have one tooth that’s particularly resistant to whitening – veneers can restore your teeth’s natural brightness with an array of shades that blend in with your natural teeth. You can even take your teeth a bit whiter if you like.
- Alignment and spacing: Once you’re past your teen years, you might not want to get braces to adjust that gap-toothed smile. Porcelain veneers can correct those small gaps and make other minor tweaks to your tooth alignment.
Before applying any veneers, our dentist in Bonita Springs can show you how you’ll look with them. The dentist will take a mold of your teeth to ensure a custom and comfortable fit. Before cementing the veneers in place, the dentist might have to reduce a small amount of your natural tooth’s enamel (less than 1 mm of the surface) so the veneers will fit snugly. But once attached, veneers won’t move or stain and should look as natural as the rest of your teeth. No one will know you’re using them except you and your dentist.
How Is a Veneer Different from a Crown?
Veneers and crowns are made from the same material, designed to be permanent, and improve the overall look of teeth dramatically. Both adhere to the underlying tooth structure and can change the shape and color of teeth. But a veneer covers only the front surface of a tooth whereas a crown (sometimes called a cap) fits over the entire tooth down to the gums.
Because of how they’re applied, crowns often are recommended if you’ve lost a lot of tooth structure because of age, trauma, decay, or because you grind your teeth. A dentist must remove more of a tooth’s exterior enamel (at least 2 mm) for a crown to fit properly. Once in place, a crown actually helps strengthen a tooth. Crowns also are a good option for molars with structural or cosmetic issues because they are stronger under the greater amount of bite force between your back teeth.
How Long Do Veneers Last?
Barring any accidents to your teeth, veneers should keep your smile radiant for decades. Just remember to brush and floss daily, and be mindful not to use your teeth to open bottles, bags, or other items.
What Are Lumineers®?
Lumineers® are a specific brand of veneers. They’re known for being ultra-thin, so they require little to no reduction in the surface enamel of your natural tooth. Yet they’re quite durable – they can last more than 20 years! Because they’re also highly translucent, they look as natural as they feel.
How Do I Care For Veneers?
For the most part, you’ll care for your veneers as you would your natural teeth: by brushing and flossing daily. But if you have an underlying issue such as tooth clenching or grinding, our dentist might recommend that you to wear a custom-made night guard to protect your veneers while you sleep. If you have veneers on your front teeth, you’ll also want to be careful about biting into certain hard foods such as candy apples and using your teeth to open packages.
Schedule a Consultation for Veneers in Bonita Springs Today
Have additional questions about whether veneers are right for you? Give our caring and friendly staff a call at (239) 494-4720 to set up an appointment. We’re happy to assist you.