When it comes to enhancing your smile with small fixes to make you feel more confident, veneers are a great option to consider. Unlike crowns or implants, which are meant to stabilize the structure and improve the function and health of a tooth, veneers are a better option for aesthetic improvements.
Often, dental professionals will recommend veneers to enhance the overall appearance of a smile. They do this by attending to discolorations, chips or breaks, misalignments or gaps, as well as irregular shapes or unevenness. One of the primary benefits of dental veneers is how well they can be made to match the natural colors and shapes of neighboring teeth.
While every type of veneer will be matched to the surrounding teeth’s quality, tone and color– your dentist may recommend a material based on the needs of your mouth. Whether you have minimal enamel for adhering, or tend to grind your teeth, each material offers a different type of durability and specific characteristics.
The types of veneers
For decades, traditional laminate veneers have been a favorite of dental professionals, because they can be carefully adjusted to mirror the natural look and feel of your teeth. There are two primary types of laminate veneers, feldspathic porcelain, and glass-based ceramics, as well as composite resin.
Feldspathic (porcelain) veneers
Feldspathic veneers are created by layering glass-based powders and liquid materials and forming them into the necessary shape. When manufactured, the material is made to mimic and create the core shade with a high level of translucency, just like natural dentition.
Because of this technique, porcelain veneers can be constructed into a thick or thin layer, which allows it to be placed directly onto the enamel– to preserve the natural tooth structure.
Glass-ceramics are ideal for dental restoration due to the increased strength and erosion resistance of the material. Both Zirconia-based ceramics and Lithium Disilicate can help to strengthen the structure of the tooth and recommended for those who grind their teeth.
These glass-based veneers are commonly used for aesthetic qualities around translucency and shade, often mirroring the tooth underneath the thin coating to produce a natural look. The increased thickness also makes it a good option for filling in gaps and evening out various sizes and shapes of teeth.
Composite veneers are a different type of material, often a resin. This resin is the same material used for fillings and can help with cracks, discoloration and chips. Similar to porcelain veneers, dentists will closely match the color of the surrounding teeth, and then apply the composite resin in layers to the teeth before carefully shaping and polishing them.
However, this type of material can discolor with eating, smoking, drinking and other factors over time. For this reason, most dental professionals will use composite veneers for teeth in the back of the mouth, as opposed to the front.
Because restorations and veneers cannot be whitened, another option to consider for improving the overall look of your teeth is a professional whitening experience. By participating in a whitening treatment before the veneer is created, it can help brighten the current set and allow you to match the updated color.
Get the experts
When it comes to veneers and color matching, your Suffolk County dental professional can advise you on the best materials and options to fit your needs. To schedule a one-on-one consultation at our Rocky Point offices, contact us today to see how we can help you.
- U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, Advances in dental veneers: materials, applications, and techniques, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3652364/
- Compendium of Continuing Education in Dentistry, Feldspathic Veneers: What Are Their Indications?, https://www.aegisdentalnetwork.com/cced/2011/04/feldspathic-veneers-what-are-their-indications