In just two visits, special thin laminates called 'veneers' can often be used to correct discolored, worn down, cracked and chipped teeth. Veneers can also be used to close unsightly gaps between teeth. Stronger types of veneers made of porcelain typically last longer than resin composite veneers because they are made of a fused glass.
An impression of the tooth must be made, and a veneer custom-molded by a lab technician. Most veneers do require a small amount of enamel to be removed. They are permanent and non-reversible. There is one type of veneer that does not require any removal of enamel, however very few people are good candidates for this procedure as several criteria must be met regarding the bite, the shade and shape of the teeth, and other factors.
After your tooth is shaped and prepared for the veneer, you will wear a temporary veneer for approximately 2 weeks that matches your original tooth. This is a thin, plastic provisional that should be thought of and treated like an eggshell. Try to avoid chewing or biting anything with the temporary, it is only in place to cover and protect the tooth underneath and not for true function. The laboratory will send your veneer back to the dental office for final bonding of the veneer to the tooth surface. This is done with an especially strong resin cement. A dental curing light is used to complete the process. You can now smile, speak and eat with confidence!
Anything that can break your natural teeth can also break a veneer. Remember, teeth are JEWELS, not TOOLS! Using your teeth to open packages or bottles, hold things like nails or pens/pencils, or bite through non-food items like thread or fishing line is a recipe for an expensive tooth crisis.