What is Veneer?
Veneers are thin custom made layer of porcelain placed over a tooth after preparing the tooth for veneer placement to change color or shape. These wafer thin layers are made from tooth colored materials like porcelain. These shells or layers are bonded to the front of the teeth. Porcelain veneers have excellent resistance to change color and is more tooth colored than resin veneers.
Veneers are used primarily on discolored tooth, to make it look more natural. Discoloration of tooth can happen due to many factors. Use of drugs like tetracycline while the mother was pregnant or used at the younger age or, excessive use of fluoride in water while growing up, may cause permanent internal stains and structural defects on the teeth. Veneer can also be used to align, shape of close gaps between teeth.
The process of making a veneer has several steps.
During your first visit, you discuss with your dentist to identify the best solution to fix a discolored tooth or to close gap between teeth, or to repair a worn out tooth. After initial exam, which may include X-rays, the best solution is suggested by the dentist. If veneer is an ideal choice for the tooth then your dentist will proceed with preparing the teeth for veneer.
Veneers are fabricated at dental labs. Next your dentist will initially shave off about half millimeter of tooth. Then an impression is taken to make a mold of the teeth. A temporary veneer may be placed until the fabricated veneer is returned to the dentist office.
During the next visit, dentist will clean and etch the teeth to bond the veneer to the teeth. A special adhesive is used to attach the veneer to the teeth. Before bonding the veneer, dentist will place it over the tooth to make any adjustments in shape of size. Once the size and shape is correct, then the veneer is bonded to the tooth. The adhesive is cured by curing light and once bonded the veneer is permanently fixed on the tooth. You may need further follow up visit to make sure the newly fixed veneer is properly aligned and any adjustment need to be made.
Lot of us will love to have a brighter, cleaner, more attractive smile, but have chipped, stained, discolored, unevenly spaced, or even slightly crooked front teeth. If you are one of them Dr. Jacob will be glad to help evaluate your specific situation, listen to the exact changes you have in mind, and show you examples of the end result, before any treatment is performed.