Firstly, what are veneers?
Are you considering veneers? You’ve come to the right place. From choosing between materials to understanding the application process and looking after your new teeth, please read our questions and answers below for more information.
Who are they most suited to?
By working closely with your dentist, you can find the best way to improve the appearance of your smile and determine if you’re a good candidate for veneers. For example, whitening can improve colour, orthodontic treatments like Invisalign can straighten and bonding can remedy chips or gaps. However veneers may be the best option in some cases. Some people have poorly shaped teeth which can only be rectified with veneers and not straightening alone. Veneers can refine and contour teeth, fix chips or broken teeth, close spaces, correct alignment and improve colour.
What is the difference between porcelain and composite veneers?
There are a few key differences. Porcelain, a type of ceramic, is made in the laboratory, while composite veneers are hand crafted from an acrylic resin directly onto the tooth. This affects both the durability and maintenance: Porcelain is very durable and the material itself will last ten to 12 years. They maintain a high polish and are stronger than composite veneers, which last five to seven years and tend to pick up more stains, chip more easily and require more maintenance. The process of application is different too: Composite veneers can be installed in a single appointment but porcelain veneers require a slightly longer process. Naturally, there is also a price difference: porcelain veneers are more expensive than composite veneers.
How are porcelain veneers applied?
The process is usually carried out over two appointments and a local anaesthetic is usually required. At the first appointment, preparation of the tooth is carried out to make space for the veneer. Depending on the case, this can be no or very little preparation. Once the teeth have been prepared, an impression of the tooth is taken and temporary veneers are fitted. At the second appointment (usually 2 weeks later), the temporary veneers are removed and replaced with the porcelain veneers created from the impression sent to the laboratory. Adhesive is placed on the prepared tooth, then the cement and the veneer is placed for exact fit and contour. The veneer is then light cured to attach it to the tooth.
And what about composites?
Composite veneers tend to be carried out in one appointment. After preparing and reshaping the teeth (if required), the dentist will choose a shade and then sculpt the acrylic resin directly onto your teeth. The material then hardens under a special light which bonds it to the teeth. This is followed by smoothing and polishing to give a natural appearance.
How should you look after your teeth afterwards?
Committing to an oral hygiene routine is important whatever dental treatments you’ve had. Brush twice daily preferably with an electric toothbrush, floss or use interdental brushes daily and see a hygienist on a regular basis. Consider limiting coffee and other stain-inducing foods. Keep in mind that veneers will need to be replaced at some point, no matter how well you take care of them, but good oral hygiene will help them last as long as possible.
How much will it cost?
Porcelain veneers are from £800.00 per veneer, a full estimate can be provided after consultation.
Composite veneers are from £200.00 per veneer, a full estimate can be provided after consultation.