For some reason, cosmetic dentistry seems to get a bad reputation. Why is that, though? Today I would like to unpack the stigma surrounding it, starting with veneers. Are they as expensive as a lot of people think, and should we consider them? It often feels like they are only something accessible to celebrities or well-off social media influencers.
How much truth is there to that? Well, I’ll be going into a deep dive in this article to determine whether they are that pricey and whether they are worth getting. If you’ve always been curious about this, keep on reading!
What are Veneers, anyway?
Simply put, they are a very thin layer of material placed over your teeth. Most of the time, this is made out of porcelain. You can learn a bit more about that on this page: https://www.webmd.com/oral-health/guide/veneers. The intent of them is to look like natural teeth, but brighter and whiter than what is underneath.
While yellower teeth are sometimes a sign of not brushing enough, often the staining occurs naturally over time. Having a sparkling smile isn’t a necessity, but it can sure help us feel better about ourselves. That’s often why people seek out getting them.
Something to keep in mind is that sets of them are custom-made for the person ordering them. So, you can also change the length, size, and shape of your teeth if you so choose to. They are quite versatile.
What Materials Are They Made From?
As you likely garnered from the title, many of them are made using porcelain. However, there are also resin options. To some extent, it will be what you prefer the look of. Most people use porcelain.
What is the difference between them? Well, resin is generally less stain-resistant. It also does not look as natural in most lighting situations. It is probably the more “budget-friendly” option but splurging for a better material is probably not a bad idea. You see, the cost difference is not very large in practice.
What Can They Be Used For?
Okay, so I’ve covered what they are and what they are made of, but what sorts of things are they used to treat? Are they purely for cosmetics? Well, the answer to that one is no. There are practical reasons that people get them as well.
Naturally, the primary reason is to assist with the discoloration of the teeth. Services such as The Dental Room can assist in creating a custom set that fits the aesthetics you are looking for. Many of us don’t want to have such white teeth that it is obvious we have veneers, which we often see from stars and celebrities.
Instead, if we are getting them due to staining from something such as a root canal procedure, it can feel nice to have veneers that look similar to our original smile while still giving a boost to confidence levels. They can also be used for damaged teeth, though.
So, if you have cracked or chipped teeth or they are damaged otherwise, they can help to restore the natural shape of your teeth. Sometimes, when we have a cracked or broken tooth, it can hurt the rest of our mouth too. It’s already uncomfortable to bite down on our cheek, let alone with a jagged edge.
How the Procedure Works
Generally speaking, an installation for these is less invasive than some other types of dentistry procedures. This is especially true in the case of dental implants, though those are medically necessary at times. If you are given the choice between the two, you should remember this.
Most of the time, if you are going to get veneers, you end up making about three trips to your dentist for the process. The first one should be the consultation, in which they can determine if you are a good candidate for them and which teeth you want to get veneered.
When you are getting fitted for one, usually your orthodontist will reshape the surface of your current tooth. They will take a mold of yours and send it to a manufacturer to have the veneers made in whatever material you have selected. It usually takes up to four weeks for them to be finished, but many providers offer the option for temporary ones while you wait. Just inquire.
For the bonding process, which you can read more about on this page, the dentist tends to begin with placing the veneer over top of your teeth to be able to shape them properly, and to your specifications. They do this until you are both satisfied with the result.
The color of them can actually be adjusted depending on the color of the cement that your orthodontist uses to bond them permanently to your natural teeth, so that will likely be a discussion to be had. Before it is cemented, though, your teeth will be rigorously cleaned.
Likely, they will be polished and etched as well to ensure a seamless application. Following the placement, you should probably visit the office again after about two or three weeks. This is mostly to check on them and your gum tissue.
Are they Worth the Cost?
While this is hard to say definitively, there are a lot of benefits to getting them. They are certainly less expensive than getting implants, so that is one factor to consider. In addition to that, though, they bring a lot to the table on their own.
Most of the time, our gums are not negatively affected by porcelain. So, as they give a natural appearance, they also do not cause any inflammation or pain. They are also usually stronger than something like a crown because they can last longer.
However, do keep in mind that they are something permanent. They cannot easily be reversed. Additionally, you might notice that your teeth are more sensitive to things like hot or cold foods because your enamel has been removed. At the end of the day, it’s up to your discretion.