At OC Lifesmiles, we offer advanced cosmetic dentistry solutions and take advantage of the latest innovations in the field of dentistry. While other dental practices may use traditional veneers that can look bulky or thick when placed on the tooth, we use ultra-thin, state-of-the-art veneers to deliver natural-looking results. Our cosmetic dentist, John Cross, DDS, chooses to work with high-quality DURAthin® porcelain veneers and relies on his extensive training and technical skill to create beautiful, long-lasting smile transformations.
- What Are Porcelain Veneers?
- Benefits of Porcelain Veneers
- Candidates for Porcelain Veneers
- Porcelain Veneers vs. Crowns
- Porcelain Veneers Procedure
- Porcelain Veneers Results
- Lifespan of Porcelain Veneers
- Porcelain Veneers Cost
- Porcelain Veneer Alternatives
- Additional FAQs
What are Porcelain Veneers?
Porcelain veneers are thin sheaths of ceramic material that firmly adhere to the surface of the teeth to instantly improve the appearance of small, stained, misaligned, damaged, or worn teeth. Veneers can mask chips and cracks, improve the color and shape of teeth, and close small spaces between teeth for a beautiful smile.
What are the Benefits of Porcelain Veneers?
Unlike traditional veneers, DURAthin® porcelain veneers are a “no prep” product, preserving the original structure of your tooth. Porcelain veneers can be used to address a wide array of common aesthetic tooth concerns, including:
- Chips and cracks
- Stains and discolorations
- Gaps between teeth
- Worn down or uneven teeth
Since the natural tooth is still completely intact, an additional benefit of this procedure is that you have the option of removing the veneers in the future. After application, your DURAthin® veneers are slightly buffed for a natural, beautiful shine.
Who is a Candidate for Porcelain Veneers?
Candidates for porcelain veneers typically wish to correct the appearance of chips, cracks, stains or discoloration, spaces or gaps, and “short” or worn teeth. In some cases, veneers can even be used to correct mild misalignment. While other treatments, such as teeth whitening or Invisalign®, may address some of these concerns individually, porcelain veneers are ideal for patients who need to address a number of dental issues simultaneously. Some patients choose to use porcelain veneers as part of a larger smile makeover treatment.
Do I Need Porcelain Veneers or Crowns?
Porcelain crowns and veneers can be used to correct many of the same tooth imperfections. However, porcelain crowns are primarily designed to strengthen the structure of a tooth that has been compromised by damage or decay. Conversely, porcelain veneers are primarily designed to improve the appearance of the teeth. During the consultation process, Dr. Cross will perform an oral examination, discuss your goals, and help determine which procedure can best meet your needs.
What Happens During the Porcelain Veneers Procedure?
Though dentists typically prepare natural teeth for veneers by removing a portion of sensitive tooth enamel, our DURAthin® veneers require no drilling, injections, or anesthesia to prep the tooth. Typically, DURAthin® veneers require only minimal tooth “prep”. Depending upon the patient’s dental needs and cosmetic goals, sometimes the veneers procedure can even be completed without local anesthetic or tooth preparation. Our patients typically report very little discomfort and no pain during the veneers procedure. Dr. Cross can simply slip on the contact lens-thin veneer, using a strong dental adhesive to bond it to the tooth.
What Results Can I Expect after Porcelain Veneers Placement?
DURAthin® porcelain veneers are custom-made and designed to match the shade of your natural teeth for a beautiful, consistent appearance. Since the porcelain material used to make the veneers has translucent properties, the final results can be virtually identical to the appearance of dental enamel. Porcelain veneers are designed to provide a natural-looking, youthful, beautiful smile. To see examples of results, we invite you to explore porcelain veneer before-and-after photos featuring our OC Lifesmiles patients.
How Long Will My Porcelain Veneers Last?
Porcelain veneers can last for decades when cared for properly. Maintaining good oral hygiene habits and scheduling routine exams with your dentist can help prolong the lifespan of your veneers. Dr. Cross also recommends patients who grind or clench their teeth wear a night guard when they sleep to protect the veneers from unnecessary damage.
How Much Do Porcelain Veneers Cost?
There is no set cost for the porcelain veneers procedure. The price of veneers is calculated using a number of variables, including the location of the affected teeth and the number of veneers needed. At the end of the consultation process, Dr. Cross can give you a quote for the cost of porcelain veneers. At OC Lifesmiles, we offer a number of financing options to provide patients with payment methods that can comfortably fit within their budget.
Are There Alternatives to Porcelain Veneers?
If you are not a good candidate for porcelain veneers or desire a more economical solution for your cosmetic concerns, we offer several treatments that can be considered alternatives to porcelain veneers:
- When a tooth is too decayed or damaged to support a porcelain veneer, Dr. Cross generally suggests a porcelain crown instead. This approach allows him to treat the tooth damage and use a custom crown to restore the full strength, structure, and appearance of the tooth, as well as create a proper bite.
- Tooth misalignment, crowding, and gaps between teeth can also be corrected with Invisalign® orthodontic treatment. Invisalign is a popular treatment that uses a series of clear plastic aligners to shift teeth into their proper position, without the need for uncomfortable metal wires and brackets.
- Tooth stains and discoloration can often be lightened with the use of professional teeth whitening treatments. We offer in-office and at-home whitening treatments to help you achieve the whiter, brighter smile you desire.
During your consultation, Dr. Cross will discuss the benefits and drawbacks of the cosmetic treatments that can improve your smile so you are able to make a decision that aligns with your needs, goals, priorities, and budget.
Additional Porcelain Veneer FAQs
Does insurance cover porcelain veneers?
Porcelain veneers are typically considered an elective aesthetic treatment that is not covered by insurance; however, our office team can check your benefits for you to be sure. If you are concerned about the price of porcelain veneers, we do offer financing options through trusted third-party lenders that can help make the cost of your treatment more budget-friendly.
How strong are porcelain veneers?
Today’s porcelain veneers are made from high-quality ceramic material that is stronger than ever. The strength and durability of these state-of-the-art materials allow Dr. Cross to create porcelain veneers that are very thin and require only a minimal amount of tooth preparation. It is important to note that porcelain veneers are not indestructible, though with proper care and protection, high-quality veneers can potentially last for up to 15 years or more.
Do porcelain veneers stain?
Porcelain veneers are made from stain-resistant, colorfast ceramic material. The shade they are when placed is the color they will be for their lifetime. For this reason, it is important to make sure you love the color of your veneers before they are bonded to your teeth. Dr. Cross typically suggests choosing a shade that is slightly lighter than you might otherwise pick if you are unsure. In every case, Dr. Cross ensures the dental lab has created the proper shade and consistent coloration among the veneers before they are placed.
Can porcelain veneers be whitened?
Porcelain veneers cannot be bleached the way natural tooth material can, but there should be no need to whiten them because they are stain-resistant. When your final veneers arrive at the practice, if they are not the appropriate shade of white, Dr. Cross can send them back to the lab with instructions to create the precise shade you desire. If you have veneers that were placed a while ago by a different dentist and are now dissatisfied with the color (or want to upgrade), Dr. Cross can design and place a new set made with high-quality materials that are whiter and brighter.
Are porcelain veneers reversible?
While some cosmetic dentists may say the porcelain veneers procedure is “reversible,” this statement is only partly true. Yes, there are now veneers that require only minimal tooth preparation, but once that enamel has been removed from the tooth, it cannot be replaced. If you choose to go forward with porcelain veneers, it is helpful to view the procedure as a long-term commitment that should be considered carefully and planned meticulously by an experienced dentist. Of course, you can always decide to replace your veneers down the road if you want to; however, today’s ceramic materials are incredibly resilient and make it possible for your new smile to remain beautiful for many years to come.
If you are interested in improving the appearance of your smile with porcelain veneers, contact our practice to schedule a consultation with Dr. Cross.