Your smile is often the first feature people notice about you. That’s true whether you’re meeting someone for the first time or whether you’re “old” friends or colleagues who see each other on a daily basis. And when your smile is beautiful and healthy looking, it can make a big difference in the impression you make. A healthy, attractive smile just makes you look more attractive and more confident, and it can help you feel more confident too. Plus, when your smile looks great, you look more energized, more successful, and even more youthful.
Of course, virtually no one is born with perfect teeth. And even if our teeth look good when we’re younger, as we age, factors like food choices, oral health problems, systemic illnesses, and even traumatic damage like chips and cracks can start to make our teeth and our smiles look worn and less attractive. Fortunately, today’s dental veneers can repair our teeth and help our smile look its best — and all it takes is a couple of office visits.
What are veneers?
Dental veneers are super-thin “sheets” of porcelain that are shaped to fit perfectly on the surfaces of your teeth, and they’re custom tinted to blend in beautifully. Once the veneers are applied to your tooth surfaces, they can correct an array of cosmetic problems.
Veneer application typically takes two visits, and once your veneers are in place, you can care for them just like you care for the rest of your teeth, with regular brushing and flossing and routine dental visits to keep them looking their best. Veneers are made of durable porcelain that’s designed to reflect light, just like your natural tooth surfaces. That porcelain also makes veneers very resistant to stains, and it also means they can’t be bleached like natural tooth material. Since your veneers are matched to your other teeth, it’s a good idea to schedule a professional whitening before you have veneers applied so your teeth and your veneers always look their brightest and healthiest. Then if you need to have a whitening in the future, your teeth and veneers will continue to “match.”
Veneers are very versatile, and they can be used for cosmetic correction of a host of issues, like:
- Deep stains (yes, even internal stains that can’t be “bleached away”)
- Chips and cracks
- Crooked teeth
- Gaps between teeth and other spacing issues
- Teeth that appear too small or otherwise out of proportion
The veneer process
At your first appointment, your teeth will be carefully prepared for the veneers. Even though veneers are really thin, they still “take up room” on your tooth surface. Before the veneer is applied, a small amount of your natural tooth material will need to be removed so that once the veneer is applied to your tooth, it won’t “stick out” over the neighboring teeth. After your tooth is prepared, an impression will be made. The impression is sent to a dental lab that specializes in dental veneers. The lab uses the impression as a “model” for your new veneer so it fits perfectly and looks great. Before you leave the office, a temporary veneer will be placed on your tooth to protect it while you wait for the permanent veneer to be created.
At your second office visit, the temporary veneer will be removed and your tooth surface will be cleaned. A special solution will be applied to gently roughen or “etch” the tooth surface to help the adhesive form a very strong bond. Your veneer is applied to your tooth and gently shaped to ensure a perfect fit. Once your veneer is in place, you’ll be all ready to flash your beautiful smile.
The first step toward a more beautiful smile
At Rifkin Dental, we want every patient to experience the confidence that comes from having a beautiful smile, and with state-of-the-art porcelain veneers, we can help every patient make that dream come true. To learn more about veneers and how they can help your teeth look their beautiful best, book an appointment online today.