Porcelain veneers are among the most flexible and powerful cosmetic dentistry procedures. But because they can be used in many situations, it isn’t always clear when they’re the best option. There’s an old chess saying that you don’t bring out the queen when a pawn can do the job. And when it comes to cosmetic dentistry, porcelain veneers are the queen, so we don’t always want to use them.
But here are five signs that, yes, porcelain veneers are the best choice for your procedure.
You Are Trying to Achieve Multiple Changes
Porcelain veneers are great when you’re trying to do many things at once. If you just want to whiten your teeth, teeth whitening is probably what you want. And if you just want to straighten your teeth, orthodontics are best. But if you want to do both at the same time, and, maybe, reshape some chipped or worn teeth, then porcelain veneers are definitely your best choice.
You Can’t Wait for Orthodontics
Speaking of orthodontics, one of the nicknames for porcelain veneers is “instant orthodontics.” It’s not actually “instant,” but it’s pretty close. While regular orthodontics can take over a year (and even Invisalign takes 6 months or more in most cases), you can straighten your teeth with porcelain veneers in just a few weeks. If you are looking to have your new, straight smile in a month or so, porcelain veneers are really the only way.
You’re Unsatisfied with Results of Other Approaches
But let’s say you try to whiten your teeth with teeth whitening, but they don’t really come out as white as you like. What then? Porcelain veneers. Teeth whitening can only make your teeth as white as your enamel allows. Porcelain veneers can make your teeth as white as you want them. You aren’t limited by the color and thickness of the enamel.
Porcelain veneers are also good if orthodontics straightened your teeth but you still aren’t happy with the results. Or if you fixed a chip with dental bonding but the results didn’t last long enough.
In all of these cases, porcelain veneers can work to improve the results so you get what you were hoping for.
You Have a Healthy Bite
We also have to remember that porcelain veneers have limits. Porcelain veneers are made of advanced ceramics and they’re highly durable under most conditions. But if you have an imbalanced bite that puts excess force on your front teeth, it can damage porcelain veneers. So we have to be careful.
This is kind of a bummer, because having a bad bite probably chipped and wore down a number of your front teeth, which makes it a situation where porcelain veneers might be a good choice. To get you your desired results, we might recommend either a bite guard or TMJ treatment to balance your bite before we add the veneers.
You Have Healthy Teeth
Porcelain veneers are a cosmetic treatment. They’re not designed to repair or protect teeth that have developed decay. Unlike dental crowns, porcelain veneers don’t fully protect a tooth. And having prior decay leads to an increased risk of future decay. This may make porcelain veneers a bad choice for placing on teeth that may decay out from under them.
And, of course, porcelain veneers can’t replace a missing tooth: that’s what dental implants are for.
What’s Right for Your Smile Makeover?
The good news is: you don’t have to know when porcelain veneers are the best choice. During your consultations with Houston-area cosmetic dentist Dr. Scott Young, Purveyor of Fine Dentistry, you can discuss your options and decide which is the best treatment.
Please call (281) 367-5559 today for an appointment at our office in The Woodlands.