tooth veneers

‘to overlay with a thin layer of fine or decorative material’
‘to conceal, with a deceptively attractive outward show’

tooth veneers are wafer-thin, custom-made shells of tooth-colored material designed to cover the front surface of teeth. basically false fingernails for teeth. clever, in that they can be used to close gaps, appear to straighten teeth or permanently change colour, shape and form. they can hide dental wear too, covering abrasion and erosion sites, together with covering over hairline fractures and internal staining.

dental veneers can be made from porcelain or from resin composite materials.
porcelain veneers resist stains better than resin veneers and better mimic the light reflecting properties of natural teeth. they are made in the laboratory.
resin or composite bonded veneers are thinner and require removal of less of the tooth surface before placement. they are made chair side.

minimally invasive, every case requires a different amount of tooth removal, if any. Typically, however, the procedure involves removing 0.3-0.5mm from the outward surface of the tooth. a layer of porcelain or composite (veneer) is then placed onto the surface in the colour, shape and position required.

before.

after.

pro’s
they provide a natural tooth appearance.
gum tissue tolerates porcelain well.
porcelain veneers are stain resistant.
the color of a porcelain veneer can be selected such that it makes dark teeth appear whiter.
veneers offer a conservative approach to changing a tooth’s color and shape.
tooth veneers generally don’t require the extensive shaping prior to placement that crowns do, yet offer a strong and aesthetic alternative.

cons
the process is irreversible.
veneers are more costly than composite resin bonding.
tooth veneers are usually not repairable should they chip or crack.
because enamel has been removed, your tooth may become more sensitive to hot and cold foods and beverages.
veneers may not exactly match the color of your other teeth. also, the veneer’s color cannot be altered once in place. if you plan on whitening your teeth, you need to do so before having veneers cemented.
though not likely, veneers can dislodge and fall off. to minimize the chance of this, do not bite your nails, chew on pencils, ice, or other hard objects.
teeth with veneers can still decay, possibly necessitating full coverage of the tooth with a crown.
veneers are not a good choice for individuals with unhealthy teeth (for example, those with decay or active gum disease), weakened teeth (as a result of decay, fracture, large dental fillings), or for those who have an inadequate amount of existing enamel on the tooth surface.
individuals who clench and grind their teeth are poor candidates for porcelain veneers, as these activities can cause the veneers to crack or chip.

longevity

tooth veneers are long-term restorations generally lasting between 5-15 years.