What makes a smile beautiful? That's a complex question, but some qualities of a lovely smile are immediately identifiable: good tooth color, shape and alignment are a few of the most important ones.There's no doubt that having a pretty, white smile is in high demand with patients across the country. According to the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, Americans spend roughly $2.75 billion every year on cosmetic dentistry. When a patient wants a smile that is as close to perfect as possible, cosmetic dentists at Fine Dental Arts of Bellevue, WA often recommend porcelain veneers as a part of the treatment plan.
About Porcelain Veneers
Porcelain veneers are light, thin, wafer-like dental devices that are shaped and sized to fit you’re your existing teeth. The porcelain material is extremely strong, resists scratches and doesn’t stain like your natural teeth. Having veneers installed requires a minimum of two appointments. With good care, a new set of porcelain veneers can last for 20 years or longer before they need to be updated. Good care includes regular checkups, brushing, flossing, avoiding direct contact with hot beverages and eating the right foods.
Recent years have brought remarkable advances in dental porcelain technology. These days, veneers can be made so thin that they can sometimes be bonded directly onto your existing tooth surface. In other cases, a very thin layer of tooth enamel — as thin as the veneer itself — needs to be removed to fit the new porcelain surface and make it look as lifelike as possible. Either way, the results are sure to make you smile.
Veneers are created in a laboratory using impressions of the patient’s smile that are taken by the dentist. Before the impressions can be made, the Stamford dentist must first prepare each tooth in the treatment plan to make room for the veneers. The entire process of creating the veneers commonly takes a few weeks, after which the patient is called back in for an appointment to have them bonded.
Versatility of Porcelain Veneers
Veneers can be used to improve any of the following characteristics of your teeth:
- Color — Teeth can become stained by the foods and drinks we like, from smoking, and even normal aging. Veneers are available in numerous shades, from the most natural to the brightest Hollywood white.
- Size & Shape — Teeth can become worn down from grinding habits, or may not have the shape or size you want to begin with. For example, some people consider rounder teeth more feminine and squarer teeth more masculine. Veneers can be shaped and sized in whichever way is most flattering to your face.
- Alignment & Spacing — Veneers can be used to close small gaps between teeth or make slight corrections in alignment while improving tooth color and shape.
When bonded to your teeth, veneers can create a natural-looking, beautiful new surface. That's because dental porcelain, like natural tooth enamel, is translucent and tough. But it doesn't stain like tooth enamel does.
Limitations of Porcelain Veneers
There are some situations in which veneers would be inappropriate. For example, if you have significantly misaligned teeth or a large gap, orthodontics might be a more appropriate solution than veneers. And if you have lost a lot of tooth structure from decay or trauma (or a particularly severe grinding habit), it might be better to restore your teeth with porcelain crowns that cover the entire tooth.
Creating a New Smile with Porcelain Veneers
The first step in creating a new smile with porcelain veneers is to communicate exactly what you don't like about your smile as it is now. It's a great idea to bring in pictures of smiles you do like, as a starting point for discussion. It's possible to see how veneers would look on your teeth in one of several ways. A model of your teeth can be created over which wax “veneers” can be placed; sometimes acrylic (plastic) or tooth-colored filling material can be placed directly onto your teeth to demonstrate the effect veneers would have on them. Once the plan has been agreed upon, your teeth will be prepared by removing a small amount of enamel, if this step is necessary. Molds of your teeth will be taken and used by a skilled dental laboratory to create your veneers, and you will receive a temporary set of veneers to wear during the few weeks it will take to create your permanent veneers. When the veneers come back from the lab, they will be cemented onto your teeth.
A "Hollywood Smile"
When a patient requests a "Hollywood Smile" it will almost always involve porcelain veneers. With veneers a patient can get a complete smile makeover, no matter how their original teeth are shaped, spaced or colored. For instance, if a patient has spaces between their teeth, a larger veneer covering can be made to fill in those spaces. The veneers are also colored and sculpted to perfection, to give you a smile that best fits your facial features. This is why so many Hollywood stars opt for this cosmetic procedure.
Are you interested in restoring your smile?
Dr. Kianoosh Behshid offers Porcelain Veneers in Bellevue, WA
Call Fine Dental Arts of Bellevue, WA at (425) 558-0909 today!