February 3, 2010

About Dental Veneers

Dental veneers are a tool used by cosmetic dentists. They are a special type of shell that is made out of porcelain or from stuff called resin. The shells go over a damaged tooth or teeth. They are most often matched to the color of the patient’s other teeth.

Dental veneers can be used to repair teeth as follows:

  • Teeth that have turned color due to meds, medical treatments, an injury, certain dental amalgams, or for other reasons
  • Worn, chipped, or broken teeth
  • Teeth that do not have a normal shape or that are not in the right place
  • Gaps between teeth

Use of a dental veneer is one way a dentist can help your teeth look and work better. They are thought to be stronger and also look more natural than bonding. Also, a dentist would  need to take away even more of the original tooth if they were to use a porcelain jacket or crown.

How Dental Veneers are Applied

Most of the time, you will need to visit the dentist three times to have dental veneers applied. The first visit will be to talk with the dentist and let them to do an exam to help them decide what you need. The dentist may also make a mold of your mouth at the first visit.

The second visit is when the dentist will remove a small part of the original tooth to make room for the veneer. Next, the dentist will take a mold to be sent to a lab. The lab will then make a custom veneer to fit your tooth.

Then, in a week or two, your dentist will be ready to fit your dental veneers to your tooth. After a few tries to be sure the veneer is placed and sized right, your dentist will fix the veneer in place. The dentist does this by making a lasting bond between your tooth or teeth and the new veneer.

The cost of dental veneers can vary from $500 to $1300 per veneer. You can expect dental veneers to last from five to ten years.

Veneers may not the best option for decayed teeth or diseased gum areas. They are a cosmetic option used by dentists to help make your smile look better. As with your original teeth, you should brush veneers daily to avoid the buildup of plaque and to help you keep a healthy smile.