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Porcelain Veneers (also called dental porcelain laminates) are custom-made thin shells of tooth-coloured materials that are designed to cover the front surface of the tooth to improve the appearance of the patents teeth and smile. The shells or veneers are bonded to the front surface of the teeth, changing their shape, size, length or colour. They are extremely versatile and are used to address a range of cosmetic issues such as to close gaps between teeth, align protruding or crowding teeth or whiten discoloured teeth.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who can have Porcelain Veneers?
Almost any person with healthy teeth can have Porcelain Veneers. Porcelain Veneers are routinely used to fix –
- Discoloured teeth – Teeth that are discoloured because of either a root canal procedure, stains from tetracycline or other kinds of drugs, excessive presence of fluoride or due to large resin fillings that may have discoloured the tooth
- Worn down teeth
- Chipped or broken teeth
- Misaligned teeth, uneven, or irregularly shaped teeth (for example, teeth that have craters or bulges in them)
- Teeth with gaps in between them
What are the advantages of Porcelain Veneers?
Porcelain Veneers are a commonly used cosmetic dental procedure to help improve the appearance of your teeth and smile. Porcelain veneers have the following benefits –
Veneers offer the following advantages:
- Porcelain Veneers provide a natural appearance to the tooth.
- Gum tissue tolerates porcelain veneers well.
- Porcelain veneers have good resistance to staining.
- Porcelain veneers can be selected so that they can make dark or discoloured teeth appear whiter.
- A Porcelain veneer offers a conservative approach to changing the shape and colour of a tooth – veneers typically do not require as extensive grinding and shaping that dental crowns require, however still offer a strong, more aesthetic alternative to crowns.
What are the disadvantages of Porcelain Veneers?
Porcelain Veneers have the following disadvantages –
- The process of attaching a porcelain veneer to the tooth is not reversible.
- Porcelain Veneers are typically more costly than composite resin bonding or composite veneers.
- Porcelain Veneers are typically not repairable were they to crack or chip.
- Your tooth may become more sensitive to hot and cold given tooth enamel has been removed to fix the porcelain veneer,
- Porcelain Veneers colour cannot be altered once it is in place. If you plan to whiten your teeth, you will need to undergo the whitening procedure prior to getting porcelain veneers.
- Porcelain veneers can potentially dislodge and fall off, although this is quite unlikely. To minimize the risk of dislodge your porcelain veneer, we advise all our patients not to bite your nails or chew on pencils or other hard objects.
- Teeth with porcelain veneers attached to them can still experience tooth decay, possibly requiring full coverage of the tooth with a dental crown.
- Porcelain Veneers are typically not a good option for patients with unhealthy teeth (e.g. patients with tooth decay or gum disease), weakened teeth (often due to tooth decay, large fillings or fracture) or for patients who have inadequate enamel on the surface of their teeth.
- Patients who have a history of grinding or clenching their teeth are usually not good candidates for having porcelain veneers, given clenching and grinding can cause the porcelain veneers to chip or crack.
How long can Porcelain Veneers last?
Porcelain Veneers typically last between 7 to 15 years. After this time, porcelain veneers usually need to be replaced.
Do Porcelain Veneers require specific or special care?
Porcelain veneers do not require any specific or special care. We advise all our patients who have had porcelain veneers to follow good oral hygiene including regular flossing, brushing and rinsing with a mouthwash. Even though porcelain veneers are stain resistance, we recommend to our patients to avoid stain-causing foods and drink items such as red wine, coffee or tea.
What are the alternatives to Porcelain Veneers?
Alternatives to Porcelain veneers include composite bonding (also called dental bonding) and dental crowns. Porcelain veneers offer a nice intermediate option to patients. Porcelain Veneers are best suited for patients who want to make significant changes the shape and size of their teeth – more than what is possible from composite or dental bonding, however not that much to require a dental crown.
Dr. Deepa, our principal dentist, is an experienced cosmetic dentist and has c. 15 years of dental experience. She has a very down to earth demeanour and also the gentlest of touch.
Whites Dental provides Porcelain Veneers and related Composite Dentistry treatments including teeth reshaping, cosmetic veneers, composite bonding and full smile makeover treatments to patients in our vicinity in London Waterloo. We are located in Waterloo SE1, next to Southwark Tube station. We are also a 5 to 10 minutes’ walk from London Bridge, Southbank, Waterloo, Borough and Elephant &Castle stations. Please visit our Cosmetic Dentistry homepage for more information about our Porcelain Veneers treatments.