What are dental veneers?
These razor-thin pieces of porcelain cover imperfections to change the overall appearance of teeth, changing their size, shape, length and colour. Patients with broken, chipped, gapped or discoloured teeth might find they feel more confident in their smiles following treatment with porcelain dental veneers.
While porcelain veneers are durable, you'll need to make sure to properly care for them if you want them to last for a long time. If they are well-maintained, they can last 10-15 years or even longer. In this post, we'll share some tips to help you care for and properly maintain your porcelain veneers.
How to Take Care of Your Veneers
It's essential to take care of your veneers if you want them to last. While it pays to be extra mindful about certain aspects, no special care is needed to ensure your veneers remain in good shape. In fact, caring for your veneers is simple when you follow these tips.
Practice good oral hygiene.
If you've already got a solid dental hygiene routine, it's probably not necessary to change it to care for your veneers. You'll just need to brush, floss and rinse:
- Brush - Use a non-abrasive toothpaste and either a manual or electric toothbrush to brush your teeth at least twice a day; ideally, you should brush after every meal.
- Floss - Floss at least once a day to remove particles caught between teeth and to protect the health of your teeth, veneers, and gums. It’s best to floss after every meal.
- Rinse - Swirl some antiseptic mouthwash around your mouth once or twice a day to rinse it. Choose an alcohol-free mouthwash, because excessive exposure to alcohol can cause the adhesive agents to soften. While this softening wouldn’t cause the veneers to fall off, it might make them more susceptible to staining and wear.
Avoid grinding your teeth.
Grinding or clenching your teeth (bruxism) while sleeping is a bad habit for patients with veneers as it puts a lot of stress on them. It's also bad for your jaw joints and teeth. Speak to your dentist as soon as possible if you suspect that you grind your teeth. Your dentist can fit you with a nighttime bite guard that you can wear while you sleep to protect your veneers from damage.
Don't chew items that will damage teeth.
Veneers are relatively durable, but they can chip and break. While normal foods shouldn’t present a problem, it’s best to avoid chewing on excessively hard materials like pens, your fingernails, ice, and bones.
Protect your smile from damage.
Physical activity is an important part of a healthy lifestyle, but participating in basketball, football, wrestling, and other contact sports can endanger the health of your new smile. To protect your veneers and your natural teeth from getting damaged you should speak to your dentist regarding a sports mouthguard.
Be mindful of stains.
Just like your natural teeth, veneers can get stained, so it’s a good idea to limit foods that are known to cause discoloration, like coffee, red wine, dark sodas, tea, curry, and berries. Smoking is another habit that can lead to stains, so if you smoke, you may want to consider quitting; not only will it improve your overall health, but it will also help keep your veneers white and bright.
Routinely visit your dentist.
Routine dental checkups are a must for people who want healthy teeth. Making it a point to see your dentist roughly every six months will help to protect both your teeth and your veneers by ensuring that any potential problems are spotted quickly and treated before they become bigger concerns. In addition, your dentist or dental hygienist will use professional equipment to polish your veneers and preserve their pearly-white gleam.