Having dental flaws can make a huge dent in your confidence. Whether you have discoloured, misshapen, or cracked teeth, it’s easy to feel like all anyone can see is your imperfect smile. As a result, many people refrain from smiling to avoid embarrassment, but this can give off the impression that you’re unfriendly and unapproachable.
If your teeth are grinding your self-esteem down, there are a variety of dental treatments that can transform them. The secret to achieving the classic Hollywood smile is dental veneers, which covers any cosmetic dental issue. Many stars such as supermodel Chrissy Teigen have admitted to undergoing this procedure.
Although this treatment is extremely popular among celebrities and influencers, is it suitable for you?
What are veneers?
Dental professionals often make veneers from porcelain or resin composite materials but the processes are very different.
Porcelain veneers are custom-made thin shells that are fitted to the front of your natural teeth, similarly to how false nails are applied, but more long-lasting. Before this step, the dentist will remove a small amount of the tooth surface to make room for the veneer, take an impression of the teeth, and have the veneer made in a dental laboratory.
The composite veneer procedure is much quicker and simpler but less durable. It entails applying layers of a tooth-coloured filling material directly onto the tooth’s surface. The dentist will then fit, polish, and shape the veneer. This option is most suitable for minor alterations.
Porcelain veneers appear very realistic as they are designed to fit directly over your teeth and to mimic the light-reflecting properties of natural teeth. If you’re getting just one or two veneers, nobody will be able to tell them apart from the surrounding teeth. Whereas, if you get a full set, everyone will assume you have a naturally beautiful smile.
A precise shade can be chosen for veneers to match your natural teeth or to make them appear whiter. This treatment is an ideal solution to discolouration if your teeth just don’t stay white after bleaching or you’re prone to side-effects from teeth whitening such as sensitivity. Keep in mind that you can’t whiten veneers so ensure you’re happy with the colour of your natural teeth before getting a veneer fitted.
While porcelain veneers are stain-resistant, any stains on the surrounding teeth will highlight the presence of false teeth. Composite resins can cause minor stains and discolouration over time.
The aftercare of this procedure is simple and doesn’t stray too far from regular oral healthcare advice. Ensure you follow any instructions provided by your dental hygienist but here are some common maintenance steps for veneers:
- Brush your teeth at least twice and floss once daily.
- Attend regular dental check-up and cleaning appointments.
- Wear a mouthguard when engaging in a contact sport.
- Don’t use teeth as tools, e.g. to open packaging, cut Sellotape, loosen a knot.
- Limit intake of foods that commonly cause stains, e.g. red wine, coffee, black tea.
- Stop smoking.
- Replace toothbrush every three months.
- Wear a retainer when sleeping if you grind your teeth.
- Avoid chewing on hard objections, e.g. ice, pens, nails.
If you follow the maintenance advice, porcelain veneers can last for up to 15 years before needing to be replaced. In comparison, teeth whitening can last for up to three years, and dental crowns can need replacing from five years.
Veneers can completely makeover your smile by providing symmetrical, white, and straight teeth. However, this treatment is irreversible, so ensure you follow any advice from a dental professional before making this decision.