Porcelain veneers are a great option to correct most dental maladies and imperfections. If you are not happy with your smile or have genetics that cause your teeth to be troublesome, veneers are a good option to consider.
The veneers are constructed using very thin porcelain which allows for minimal loss of tooth structure. While it is thin, porcelain is a strong material and can easily be maintained for decades. They are not indestructible so you will want to heed the same precautions you (hopefully) always took with your natural teeth.
Are Porcelain Veneers a Permanent Solution?
Porcelain veneers can last up to twenty years if properly cared for. There are some things that can lessen the life of your veneers but if you are proactive about protecting them, you will be able to ensure a long lifespan.
Things that would damage your natural teeth will also damage your veneers. Biting into hard foods, chewing ice, and using teeth as tools can cause your veneers to chip or crack.
Making Them Last
While veneers can last a very long time, they are not intended to last forever. They require proper care and maintenance which will allow you to get the most out of your investment. Caring for your veneers will involve:
- Proper oral hygiene: Making sure you brush and floss your veneers as you would your natural teeth, if not better, will greatly increase their durability. Brushing twice a day using a toothpaste recommended by your dentist specifically for porcelain veneers and making sure to keep up a routine dental hygiene visit are very important. Sometimes people who have restorative work will fall off the wagon and not visit their dentist regularly, but this is not a good practice. When you get veneers, you have made an investment and if you wish to keep it, see your dentist regularly.
- Oral protection: One reason many people decide to invest in veneers is due to the wearing of their natural teeth. Having your dentist make a night guard for you and wearing it nightly will help protect your teeth from any clenching or grinding you may do in your sleep. If you are physically active and enjoy playing sports, a separate mouthguard designed specifically for sports would be another good option.
- Proper use: Teeth are not tools! Your natural teeth and especially veneers are meant for biting, chewing and speaking. They are not scissors, glove removers, or openers of any kind! Using your teeth/veneers for any purpose for which they were not meant is just asking for a chip or crack or even the entire veneer popping off and needing to be replaced well before it’s time.
Veneers are an investment in yourself. Yes, it is considered a cosmetic procedure so you will likely be paying out of pocket for them since most insurance will not cover them. How you treat and care for them will determine how much bang you get for your buck. Veneers will be a beautiful, natural looking solution and give you the smile you want. How long they last is up to you!
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