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Veneers

Dental veneers are a shell or layer of tooth-colored porcelain placed over the facial surfaces of teeth to correct worn tooth enamel, uneven tooth alignment or spacing, discoloration, and chips or cracks.

Although dental veneers fall into the category of cosmetic dentistry (because they create bright, white smiles with beautifully aligned, shapely teeth), they also protect the surface of damaged teeth and may eliminate the need for more extensive treatments. Other benefits of veneers include durability, an improved smile appearance, and the need for little-to-no removal of tooth structure compared to crowns.

Dental veneers may solve most or even all of your cosmetic dental issues, like:

  • Worn enamel: Over time, the thin, hard translucent substance covering your teeth (enamel) may become worn, dulled, and discolored. Such wear and discoloration is often the result of consuming soft drinks, tea or coffee, smoking, the use of certain medications, etc.
  • Wear and tear: Teeth naturally wear down as people age. Aged teeth are more likely to have chips, cracks or a generally uneven appearance.
  • Uneven teeth: Uneven teeth can result from tooth grinding or general wear and tear.

Porcelain is the most appropriate and long lasting material for dental veneers. The removal of any natural tooth structure is permanent, so dentists Dr. Chen prefer to offer patients the most minimally invasive options first. If your natural teeth are functionally and esthetically adequate, dental veneers may not be an appropriate treatment for you. Veneers do have the added benefits of longevity and a proven ability to enhance the appearance of the mouth, smile and other facial features that are better supported by properly shaped teeth.

Porcelain dental veneers may require the “shaping” or “prepping” of all teeth being treated. Therefore, some cosmetic dentists first recommend teeth whitening to people with mildly discolored teeth who want a whiter smile because it’s the least invasive cosmetic dentistry option. If crooked teeth or alignment issues are involved, whitening also may be combined with orthodontic treatments.