A veneer is a covering for teeth, usually the front teeth. It's kind of like half a crown. What we do is, we give the patient a little anesthesia. It's not a real painful procedure, but there is a little bit such as the anesthesia is needed. We reduce the front part of the tooth, maybe a half millimeter or so, not a whole look. Take an impression of that prepared tooth. We send that to the lab and make a temporary veneer for them. They come back, and we have a permanent veneer that's cemented in place. It looks just like a tooth from the front, and it's open in the back and is bonded or glued right to the front of the tooth.
Again, people who have badly discolored teeth or old filings that are breaking down are ideal candidates for veneers. Sometimes it's just one or two teeth. Sometimes it's all the front teeth, depending on the need of the patient. The patient's reaction when they see the veneers is one of the highlights of my day when we get to do that. The patient will look at it, and they'll just say, 'Oh my gosh, that looks great!' My dental assistants are really good with picking shades and colors and they're very good with the cosmetics as well. It's nice as a team to be able to see the patient so happy and thrilled that they've got nice looking teeth now.
Do you stand in front of the mirror every morning imagining yourself with a picture-perfect smile? Are there certain aspects of your teeth that you wish you could change? If so, you’re like millions of Americans. But just like those people, you don’t have to live with bad teeth any longer.
At Fox Family Dentistry, we have advanced cosmetic dental solutions to brighten your smile and boost your confidence. A healthy mouth and healthy body means much more than brushing your teeth and flossing. It’s about finding a smile that fits your personality.
Porcelain veneers are a versatile cosmetic dental restoration that can cover unsightly chips, cracks, or small breaks in the teeth; gaps in the teeth; and heavy stains on teeth that cannot be removed by whitening. They can even help strengthen teeth with worn enamel.
How Can Porcelain Veneers Restore My Smile?
Veneers are extremely thin layers of porcelain that are placed over each tooth. Your tooth is made up of four different tissues, with the enamel being the outer tissue. When the enamel is damaged or is heavily stained, a veneer can be placed on the tooth to restore function and appearance. Porcelain is preferred in this process because it is strong and refracts light much like your natural tooth. A well-placed and designed veneer should look identical to healthy, bright tooth enamel. One of the biggest benefits of a porcelain veneer is that it does not fade or stain with age, though the restoration’s life span often is based on how the patient cares for his or her teeth.
If you’re considering a complete smile makeover, we may ask you to consider whitening your teeth once the veneers are placed.
How We Place Your Veneers
We can place your veneers in two simple visits. We first prepare the tooth and take an impression of the mouth so we can get an accurate mold for your permanent restoration. It’s important to understand that porcelain veneers require us to remove a small portion of your enamel. While enamel is the hardest substance in your body, it can erode with exposure to harmful bacteria. And once the enamel erodes or is removed, it cannot be restored, so veneers are not reversible. However, our office ensures that this enamel-removal process is as minimally invasive as possible.
You’ll wear a temporary veneer while your permanent restoration is being fabricated. This takes about one week. During your final visit, we’ll use a high-strength bond to place the permanent veneer or veneers on your teeth. With proper maintenance, the veneer should last for years or even longer.
Most of our patients are candidates for porcelain veneers, depending on their smile goals. We ask that patients seeking veneers are free of decay or gum disease. Veneers can be used for both cosmetic and restoration purposes. For patients who need root canals on their front teeth, we’ve found that a restoration like a veneer can restore the tooth and reduce the risk of a break or fracture. If your teeth have severe breaks, we may ask you to consider restoring the tooth with a dental crown.
Drs. Fox will sit with you to discuss your smile options and then explain every facet of the procedure before launching into treatment mode. For a consultation, call our office today at 703-260-1677 or use the convenient online form to book your visit.