DentalSave Knowledge Center
What are dental veneers?
A dental veneer is a thin, custom-made shell of tooth-colored material that is cemented to the front of the tooth. Primarily used for cosmetic purposes, veneers can change the color, shape, size, or length of your teeth to improve their appearance.
Veneers are often used to repair:
- Discolored or stained teeth
- Teeth that are worn down, chipped or broken
- Crooked, uneven, or irregularly shaped teeth
- Gaps between teeth
What are dental veneers made of?
Dental veneers can be made from porcelain or resin composite materials. They offer a strong, aesthetically pleasing alternative to crowns with less loss of natural tooth structure. Veneers are not a good option for patients with unhealthy teeth, gum disease and those who clench or grind their teeth. After a thorough exam and evaluation of your teeth, your dentist can help you decide which material will best fit your needs.
Composite veneers offer a more durable solution than bonding for chipped or discolored teeth. They can also be also used to correct minor misalignments and give an appearance of straighter teeth. Composite veneers can be done chairside in just one visit. Resin is applied to the tooth in thin layers and sculpted until the desired look is achieved. Unlike porcelain veneers, composite veneers can be removed and replaced as needed.
The procedure for a porcelain veneer involves removal of a thin layer of the tooth’s enamel, followed by the cementing of a thin, sculpted porcelain veneer that is created in a dental lab.
More resistant to staining and chipping, porcelain tends to look more like a natural tooth and is also more effective for treating severe discoloration, malformation or misalignment of teeth. This type of veneer usually requires a few trips to the dentist to take impressions, prepare the tooth, and cement the veneer after it returns from the lab.
Porcelain veneers are intended to be permanent. Removal is not recommended due to risk of damage to the teeth. Before cementing, your dentist will try in your permanent veneers to make sure you are happy with the shade, shape and length.
How long will dental veneers last?
Veneers generally last between 7 and 15 years. As always, good oral hygiene is a must to keep your teeth clean and healthy. Although porcelain veneers are stain resistant, your dentist may recommend that you brush immediately after ingesting foods and beverages that can stain teeth.
How much do dental veneers cost?
Depending on where you live and your dentist’s fees, the cost of dental veneers varies. Rarely covered by insurance, the average cost of a porcelain veneer is $1191 per tooth. With your DentalSave membership, you save 25% off veneers, giving you an average savings of $536.