A number of aesthetic dental issues can be addressed using dental veneers. But, are they a permanent solution for your smile? Here, our Whitehorse dentists walk through the purpose of these restorations and list some of the factors that can affect their longevity.
What are dental veneers?
Dental veneers are thin restorations that are custom-made from porcelain and bonded to the front of your teeth with composite resin cement. After being applied to your smile. they create a surface that looks and feels like natural teeth.
Veneers can help to change the perceived position, shape or colour of your teeth, leaving you with a more aesthetically pleasing smile.
How long do porcelain dental veneers last?
Porcelain veneers will likely need to be replaced at some point and are therefore not considered a permanent procedure. However, id properly cared for, porcelain veneers can last a significant length of time – usually for about 15 years on average. Depending on some key factors, they can last much longer (20 years or more).
After having your veneers placed, it will be very important that you maintain an excellent routine of oral hygiene. That is because the lifespan of your veneers is closely tied with how well you care for them. Patients that maintain good oral hygiene (brushing and flossing daily) at home and who regularly visit the dentist for professional exams and cleanings are more likely o have their veneers last longer in their mouth.
Longevity will also be impacted by whether any oral health problems are corrected. Bite problems, biting hard objects, grinding and clenching can put excessive pressure on your teeth, and therefore your veneers.
Why do porcelain veneers need to be replaced?
While porcelain is quite durable, veneers can fracture, chip, decay or debond over time. They may also need to be replaced if you experience gum recession, since this may cause your restorations to fit improperly.
Caring for dental veneers
There are a few things you can do to make your veneers last as long as possible. As mentioned, continuing an excellent oral health care practices is the best way to ensure your veneers stay in great condition. This can include:
Wearing a mouthguard while playing contact sports
Trauma done to your mouth such as running into an object or person can cause dental veneers to fall off or fracture. This is why it's important to wear a mouthguard and protect your restorations if you play contact sports.
Avoiding sticky, hard foods or using your teeth as tools
While your dental veneers will stand up to everyday chewing, don’t get into the bait of chewing ice or using them to rip open packages, as this increases the risk of chipping, loosening or breaking them.
Attending your regular dental appointments
When attending routine dental exams, your dentist is able to both check in on the condition of your veneers and provide your smile with a deep clean. Your dentist will be able to identify and treat any health issues that could impact your veneers early as well, preventing them from developing into more serious problems.
Practicing excellent oral hygiene
You know the drill - brush twice a day for two minutes each time, and floss at least once per day. Tooth decay is a common cause of failure of dental veneers.
Are porcelain veneers right for me?
Though dental veneers can be used to address several aesthetic concerns, they are not the right treatment for every dental health issue - or every person. In some cases, other restorations such as dental crowns, dental bonding, teeth whitening or orthodontics may be more effective treatment options.