Thin wafers of porcelain, which are half a millimeter thick are used to make porcelain veneers. These veneers are then bonded onto the front of the teeth to make a smile makeover. No restorative material mimics tooth structure better than porcelain does. Another advantage of porcelain is that the material is harder than enamel and therefore it has the ability to last for a very long time. There are dental artists who have the ability to make the make the material look like any human tooth. Also, porcelain resists stains better than enamel and so, you will say goodbye to discoloration of your teeth.
There are some media outlets that have misled people into believing that the teeth need to be ground down in order to place porcelain veneers. Saying that the teeth are shaved a little would be more accurate. Only minimum reduction is necessary and as such, the teeth are not damaged in any way. On the right is a picture that illustrates the thinness of the porcelain veneers and also how like each other an unprepared tooth and a prepared one look.
The placement of the shells is not something that can be done by any Tom, Dick and Harry. It needs the hand of a skilled cosmetic dentist. The procedure is as follows:
- Preparation of the teeth is done by the removal of about ½ millimeter of enamel from the surface.
- An anesthetic will be used at this stage so that you do not experience any discomfort.
- An impression of the teeth is then made. The purpose of this impression is so that the doctors at the laboratory can create a custom fit.
- The custom fit will be ready after a maximum of fourteen days. Meanwhile, temporary veneers will be placed over your teeth.
When your shells arrive from the lab, the dentist will call you for a second appointment to place them.
- The porcelain veneers will be trimmed even further after the dentist places them next to your teeth for evaluation.
- Cleaning and polishing of the teeth at this stage will be done so that the bonding material sticks firmly to the teeth.
- The shells are the firmly fixed to the teeth using cement.
- The dentist will then give you a list of how to care for your newly bonded teeth in their early stages.
- You can now restore that smile which you have been ashamed of for so long.
This procedure is not fit for every person. First of all, you will have to consult a dentist to determine whether you are a good candidate for this or not. The best candidates for this usually have healthy teeth and gums and they would like to make their smiles appear even better. There are several dental flaws that can be rectified using this procedure such as:
- Spaces or gaps that can be found between teeth
- Tooth that are damaged, chipped or cracked
- Uneven teeth
- Enamel that is worn out
- Teeth that are recessed
- Yellowed teeth
- Irregularly shaped teeth
- Too sharp or too long teeth.
If after evaluation your dentist finds that you are not a good candidate for tooth bonding using porcelain veneers he or she will advise you on what other alternatives to use.
The use of cosmetic digital imaging is something that is done by many dentists so as to help patients make the right decision. The good thing about cosmetic digital imaging is that it helps the patient to see how his or her teeth will appear after the procedure even before the procedure itself is done. The one thing that should be noted, however, is that cosmetic digital imaging only works as a guideline and patients should therefore have realistic expectations of the end result.
There are numerous benefits that can be obtained from this particular procedure. These include:
- Results that look as natural as possible
- The material used in the process is very durable and lasts for long
- The procedure does not greatly alter the teeth’s natural setup
- The material is resistant to staining
- Multiple flaws are corrected by this procedure
- The solution lasts for a very long period of between 10 to 15 years.
- The strength and functionality of the teeth will be restored
- The procedure will be custom made for your smile
- No more than two appointments will be required for this procedure
- Your confidence will be restored and you will be able to smile like when you were a kid