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What Are Veneers and How Do They Work?

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what are veneers and how do they work

We are often our worst critics, especially when it comes to our looks. Studies show that over 80% of people tend to find themselves unattractive in photos, and so many people downright refuse to smile because of the way their teeth look. Thankfully, cosmetic dentistry has evolved so much over the past few years to the point that it is now possible to change virtually any kind of tooth defect, damage, or aspect of your smile you are unhappy with, allowing you to show off uniform and bright teeth every time you smile. Veneers are perhaps one of the most popular treatments offered at a dental clinic near you that can help you achieve your dream smile.

What are Veneers Made of?

Simply put, veneers are thin pieces of porcelain or composite resin that are custom made to fit and bond to your teeth. They are designed to appear extremely natural and attractive and can easily hide or “fix” stained, chipped, uneven, or spaced teeth. With proper care and maintenance, porcelain veneers can last up to 20-25 years. Alternatively, composite veneers are less expensive and may last up to 4 years with good care. There are also laminate veneers, involving an ultra-thin layer of porcelain that covers only the surface of teeth to hide stains and are for purely aesthetic purposes.

Types of Veneers 

Veneers can be categorized into different types depending on their coverage, the preparation needed, the way they are fabricated, and the materials they are made of, as discussed above. The following is a recent veneer classification that is:

  • Labial surface coverage

  • Interproximal preparations

  • Methods of production

  • Materials

Before veneers, the only way chipped, uneven, or overly spaced out teeth could be fixed was through rather intrusive procedures such as dental crowns or braces. The process of inserting porcelain veneers in NW Calgary is far less intrusive and you can see immediate results with dramatic improvements to your smile just after the first bonding procedure.

The Process of Obtaining Veneers 

Diagnosis: Acquiring dental veneers usually takes 3 to 4 visits to your dentist in NW Calgary. During the first visit, your dentist will diagnose your condition, discuss the kind of results that you are expecting from the treatment with you, then put together a timeline, and begin the treatment planning process. Since it is more or less a cosmetic treatment, the dentist will take your opinions and requests largely into consideration when they plan out the treatment. Once the treatment plan is established, the first visit may also include taking X-rays and impressions of your teeth to prepare for the next steps.

Preparation: The proper bonding of veneers requires a properly prepped tooth surface. Your dentist may reshape your teeth to match the thickness of the veneers you are receiving that includes some trimming of your enamel. They might use a local anesthetic to make the process more comfortable for you. After prepping, they will take an impression of your teeth to send to the laboratory that prepares veneers.

Placing/Bonding Veneers: In order to achieve the proper fit and natural appearance of your veneers, your dentist may temporarily place your veneers to check them, and may trim them if needed. Your teeth will be cleaned and polished thoroughly before placing veneers on them, and they will also be etched with an acidic substance to prepare the natural enamel of the teeth for the adhesive that will be used for veneers. Once the veneers are properly placed, the dentist will use a special beam of light to activate the chemicals in the adhesive.

To learn if you qualify for this procedure, schedule your consultation today for veneers in NW Calgary!