Dental Veneers are usually made out of porcelain or composite and act as small tooth coloured laminates, that cover the surface of individual teeth. Veneers are used to improve the overall appearance of the teeth, correcting misalignment, irregular shaping enamel erosion due to wear and tear, chips cracks, discolouration, and reducing large spaces.
Dental veneers are considered purely a cosmetic procedure as they are intended to enhance the appearance of the smile. However there are cases where veneers are required to correct damage or trauma that has occurred on the surface or within the tooth structure, and may remove the need for more extensive treatment, as veneers can add a valuable layer of protection due to there durability.
Types of Veneer
there are two types of veneers Porcelain or composite, porcelain is the more expensive material out of the two, and you can expect to pay from $850 – $2500 per tooth. The cost of this does vary depending on the location of the dentist, his or her level of expertise in his or her field, the technologies used, and the creative and technical ability of the ceramists who will be making the veneers. Porcelain veneers are the most durable and most realistic in comparison to real teeth as porcelain has similar light reflecting properties as teeth, therefore, the overall look is more natural.
Composite veneers are made up of resins and are applied to the tooth and built up layer by layer to until the result is attained. the dentist will then complete the veneer by curing with a high powered lamp, then polishing the surface to give a realistic finish. This option is more cost effective as this can be done without the aid of CAD, and the additional costs of a third party laboratory, technicians and ceramists.
The procedure is likely to consist of three appointments with a dentist, the first appointment will be a consultation with the dentist to identify suitability for the procedure and to give the patient and opportunity to outline the desired results, whereby you may discuss shape, size length and the colour of the veneer. Your dentist will examine your teeth to ensure that there aren’t any underlying issues before the veneers are fitted, and he or she will also discuss any limitations of the treatment. It is important to know that this procedure is irreversible due to the fact approximately half a millimetre of your enamel is removed.
Once the examination has been completed your dentist will take X-rays of your teeth to check the structure, photographs and computer aided design software CAD will be used for visualisation and for the fabrication of the veneers. Your dentist will most likely show you how the final results are likely to appear via CAD.
If the patient has opted for porcelain veneers an impression will be taken of the teeth and a mold will be made, which will be sent to a laboratory either external or internal for the veneers to be produced. The dentist will prepare the surface of the tooth by removing the enamel and filing ridges into the surface of the tooth in some cases to create a better surface for bonding, a numbing agent or local anaesthetic is used. Depending on the preparation, temporary veneers may be provided for the patient until the final set have been returned to the dentist.
Once the veneers are returned from the laboratory, the dentist will adjust where necessary to perfect the fit and alignment, cement will be used to bond the veneers to the surface of the tooth and then finally cure to harden, after a final evaluation of the smile and bite, the procedure is complete. There is usually a follow up appointment to assess the placement of the veneers and to assess how the gums are interacting with the new surface.
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