Dental veneers can help with a variety of cosmetic concerns, but are they a long-term solution? The purpose of these restorations, as well as factors that affect their longevity, are discussed by our Windsor dentists.
What are dental veneers?
Dental veneers are thin, tooth-coloured porcelain slivers that your dentist bonds to the front of your teeth. They're bonded to your teeth with composite resin cement, giving them a natural-looking and feeling surface.
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, if properly cared for, porcelain veneers can last a significant length of time – usually about 15 years on average. Depending on some key factors, they can last much longer (20 years or more).
Maintaining an excellent oral hygiene routine will be more important than ever after you've had veneers placed. Because how well you care for your veneers determines how long they last. Patients who practice good oral hygiene at home (brushing and flossing daily) and visit the dentist for professional dental exams and cleanings regularly can expect their veneers to last longer.
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?
Though porcelain is very durable, porcelain veneers can chip, fracture, decay or debond over time. You may also need to replace them if you experience gum recession, as this may cause the veneer to not fit correctly anymore.
Caring for dental veneers
There are a few things you can do to extend the life of your veneers. As previously stated, maintaining excellent oral health care practices is the best way to keep your veneers in good shape. Examples include:
Wearing a mouthguard while playing contact sports
Trauma to the mouth (such as a run-in with another person or object) can cause dental veneers to fracture or fall off. This is why it’s important to wear a mouthguard to protect your restorations if you play contact sports.
Avoiding sticky, hard foods or using your teeth as tools
While your dental veneers will withstand normal chewing, don't fall for the trap of chewing ice or ripping open packages with them, as this increases the risk of chipping, loosening, or breaking them.
Attending your regular dental appointments
When you attend your regular dental exams, you not only allow your dentist the opportunity to give your teeth an essential deep clean, but they will also take the time to check the condition of your veneers and treat any problems early before they have a chance to fully develop.
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?
Dental veneers can be used to address a variety of aesthetic issues, but they are not the right treatment for every dental health problem - or every person. Other restorations, such as dental crowns, dental bonding, teeth whitening, or orthodontics, might be a better treatment option in some cases.