Improve the quality of your life with porcelain veneers in Greensboro
Porcelain veneers are among the most requested cosmetic dental procedures in Greensboro, NC and nationally. They are efficient, customizable, and when designed by a talented dentist such as Dr. Steven Hatcher, they are dazzling. Research has shown that an attractive smile can improve social interactions, first impressions, and other aspects of your quality of life.
If you are considering veneers, you probably have quite a few questions. Here are answers to some of the ones we receive most often.
How are veneers different from crowns?
Crowns cover all exposed tooth surfaces and are used to repair and protect teeth. If you look at a dental crown from above, or from any side, it looks just like a natural tooth. Viewing it from the bottom, you would see that it is hollow inside. Before a tooth is crowned it is reduced in size, and then shaped. This allows the crown to fit over it like a thimble fits on your finger.
Veneers cover only the fronts of teeth and are used primarily for aesthetic enhancement. A veneer is simply an ultra-thin sliver of porcelain. From the front it looks like a tooth, but it is no thicker than a fingernail. Very little tooth enamel is removed in preparation, making this a conservative treatment, yet veneers can entirely change the appearance of teeth.
What dental problems do veneers correct?
In some cases, veneers are sufficient to cover minor chips or fractures. However, they are most commonly used to improve the appearance of reasonably healthy teeth. Veneers can change the size, shape, and color of teeth. They may be used for:
- Wide gaps between teeth
- Asymmetry of the smile
- Misshapen teeth
- Permanent stains or naturally dark enamel
- Teeth that are too short, or uneven
- Worn down teeth and other signs of an aging smile
I have heard that veneers will fix crooked teeth. Is that true?
Yes and no. First, you need to understand that veneers are not orthodontics, and they will not change the location, angle, or rotation of underlying teeth. What they do change is the appearance. If misalignment is only a cosmetic issue, and it is mild, then veneers may be an option. They can make teeth look perfectly straight. However, if you need to correct orthodontic problems for functional reasons, then you need braces.
Am I a good candidate for veneers?
The best veneer candidates are adults with good oral health who want to improve the appearance of one or several teeth. If you have untreated gum disease, cavities, or other oral disease, we may recommend addressing that before beginning veneer treatment. The best way to explore your options is to visit Dr. Hatcher for a consultation.
What does the procedure involve?
The general steps in the procedure are:
- Consultation – Dr. Hatcher begins with an evaluation and discussion to ensure that you are a good candidate.
- Preparation – A very small amount of enamel is shaved from the tooth or teeth, just enough to accommodate veneer thickness.
- Color selection – A shade guide is used to determine the precise natural coloring of your tooth enamel. If all teeth are being treated with veneers, then you have the option of choosing a lighter-than-natural shade if you wish.
- Impressions – A model of your teeth is created, which is used by the ceramist to create veneers that fit perfectly.
- Temporaries – In some cases, we will place temporary veneers to protect your prepared teeth. Depending on the amount of enamel removed, this step may not be necessary.
- Fabrication – Your new veneers are crafted by a premier dental laboratory.
- Evaluation – Before cementing the veneers in place, Dr. Hatcher will verify the fit, appearance, and quality.
- Placement – When everything is just right, the veneers are cemented to teeth and fixed with a special curing light.
How long does it take to get veneers?
In most cases, you can expect about one or two weeks from the initial consultation until your new smile is in place. The exact timeframe is different for every patient, affected by factors such as any preliminary treatments that are needed, the number of revisions or adjustments to the veneers, and the turnaround time of the dental laboratory.