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What Are Dental Veneers?

dental veneersDental veneers are thin shells that are meant to cover the front of your teeth in order to improve their appearance. Veneers are bonded to the tooth in order to change their shape, color, length or size. Dental veneers are typically made of resin composite or porcelain. Whether you are getting this procedure to correct discoloration or fix a tooth, veneers are a great option that should be discussed with your dentist.

The procedure for dental veneers is performed by your dentist and typically takes 3 visits to complete.

Step 1: Treatment Options
To begin, you want to speak with your dentist about what you want to accomplish and if veneers would be a good option for your needs.

Step 2: Preparing
Once your dentist has determined that veneers are good for your specific case, they will then begin to prepare the tooth. The dentist will remove about 1/2 millimeter of enamel from the tooth’s surface, which is the thickness of the veneer. Your dentist will also take an impression of the tooth to make sure the veneer fits perfectly on your tooth. The impression will be sent to a lab so the veneer can be created, usually taking 2-4 weeks.

Step 3: Fitting the Veneer
Once your dentist receives the veneer back from the lab, they will temporarily place it on the tooth and make any adjustments needed in order for it to fit correctly.

Step 4: Preparing the Tooth
After the veneer is properly fitted, the dentist will then clean the tooth receiving the veneer and roughen the tooth slightly to make it easier for the veneer to hold.

Step 5: Cementing the Veneer
The dentist will use a bonding agent to cement the veneer on to the tooth. A special light is used to harden the bonding agent, permanently placing the veneer on your tooth.

You will follow up with the dentist after a couple weeks to make sure the dental veneer is holding and to check that your gums are not responding negatively. You should continue proper dental hygiene and treat your dental veneer just like you would your permanent teeth.

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