Our smile comes top of the list of things people first notice about us, but even a slight imperfection with our teeth can destroy our confidence, playing havoc with relationships – both professional and personal. A survey conducted during this year’s National Smile Month reveals that nearly half (48%) of us are unhappy with our smile.
For those of us who have ‘niggly’ problems with unsightly teeth, there are a number of cosmetic dental solutions – and your dental clinic is well placed to offer the best treatment options to suit your personal aesthetic needs.
Dental veneers are designed to disguise cracked, chipped, misaligned or missing teeth in order to create a desired smile.
A dental veneer is a thin layer of porcelain made to fit over the front surface of a tooth – much like a false fingernail fits over a natural nail.
They not only improve the shape of a tooth (and, in some cases, can lengthen stumpy teeth), but can also lighten the colour and position of a tooth.
As with all cosmetic dental procedures, your dentist will need to ensure that your mouth is super fit and healthy before the dental veneers are fitted.
If you are considering dental veneers, it’s important that you are also aware of any risks. Your dental clinic will talk you through the pros and cons before fitting them.
In the meantime, let’s look at the options when it comes to veneers…
Pros of porcelain veneers
- Create natural-looking results because they perfectly mimic the translucency of your natural teeth
- Durable and, therefore, offer long-lasting results that can last up to 10 to 15 years – if well looked after!
- A great anti-ageing solution, As teeth lose lustre with age, porcelain veneers remain the colour you chose, giving you a more youthful appearance
- Can transform a smile dramatically, making it brighter and straighter (see our ‘before and after’ photo gallery)
- Can form part of a major smile makeover and can be combined with other cosmetic treatments, such as crowns, bridges, teeth whitening and dental implants, blending perfectly
- Little recovery time
- They can help to strengthen fractured teeth
Pros of resin veneers
- They are a more conservative dental procedure so only a very small amount of your original tooth needs to be pared back to accommodate a resin veneer
- Strong and durable
- Cost effective
- Best suited to teeth with minor to moderate size or shape defects
- Offer a same-day solution as they can be fitted in one visit
- Easily re-shaped, repaired, polished and maintained
- Perfect aesthetic solution if you are unsure how far you wish to go with your smile makeover and leave open the option of ‘upgrading' to porcelain veneers at a later date
Cons of dental veneers
An invasive procedure whereby teeth will need to be pared down before they are fitted (however conservative), although not as much as they would if you are having a full crown fitted. A dentist will always need to shave off some enamel from your teeth to allow room for the added volume of the veneers.
- You’ll need ‘temporaries’ fitted while the dental ceramicist creates the natural-looking porcelain veneers
- There can be problems with the underlying tooth if dental hygiene is neglected – but they require little more than your usual cleaning regime!
- There is a risk of chipping or a veneer falling off, which your dental clinic can repair or replace
- Once cemented in, the colour and shape cannot be changed
- If you are a ’clencher’ of a ‘grinder’, dental veneers are not suitable for you. See your dental clinic for advice on bruxism
- They can come with a high price tag compared to other cosmetic dental solutions
- Gums shrink with age so you may need them replaced at some point
- You may suffer a little sensitivity initially
- They are non reversible