Dental veneers can address several aesthetic issues, but are they a permanent solution? Our dentists at Toothworks King-York Dental review the purpose of these restorations, and factors that affect longevity.
What are dental veneers?
Dental veneers are thin, custom-made slivers of tooth-coloured porcelain that your dentist bonds to the front of your teeth. They are bonded to your teeth with composite resin cement, creating a surface that looks and feels much like natural teeth do.
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, id properly cared for, porcelain veneers can last a significant length of time – usually for 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. This is because the longevity of your veneers is determined by how well you care for them. Patients who practice good oral hygiene at home (brushing and flossing daily) and go to the dentist regularly for professional dental exams and cleanings are more likely to have their veneers 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 make your veneers last as long as possible. As mentioned, continuing an excellent oral health care practices is the best way to ensure your veneers stay in great condition. This can include:
Wearing a mouthguard while playing contact sports
Trauma to the mouth (such as a run-in with another person or object) and 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 stand up to everyday chewing, don’t get into the bait of chewing ice or using them to rip open packages, as this increases the risk of chipping, loosening or breaking them.
Attending your regular dental appointments
When you go to your regular dental exams, you not only allow your dentist to give your teeth a thorough cleaning, but they will also check the condition of your veneers and treat any problems before they become serious.
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?
Though dental veneers can be used to address several aesthetic concerns, they are not the right treatment for every dental health issue - or every person. In some cases, other restorations such as dental crowns, dental bonding, teeth whitening or orthodontics may be more effective treatment options.