Posted on 8/13/2017 by Dr. Kelsey Ullsmith
Dental veneers are thin "shells" that cover the surface of your teeth. They are designed to mask minor dental imperfections, from cracks and chips, to gaps between teeth, even discolored or misshapen teeth.
Veneers provide you with a completely restored, beautiful, natural smile that will give you back your confidence. But there are a few things that you should keep in mind.
Veneers are Not Immune to Damage
Veneers, particularly porcelain, are designed to withstand normal, everyday biting forces. However, biting down too hard can cause them to chip or fracture. For this reason, you should avoid foods that are particularly hard, such as caramel apples and ice, as well as habits that involve biting objects, such as fingernails, pens, or pencils. You should also avoid using your teeth to open packaging. And, if you suffer with bruxism, you should invest in a night guard to protect your veneers from the forces exerted with grinding and clenching.
They are Not Stain-Proof
Porcelain veneers are stain resistant, not stain-proof. Therefore, you should avoid, or at least keep to a minimum, foods and beverages that would otherwise stain your natural teeth - coffee, tea, red wine, tomato based foods. If you do partake, be sure to follow anything you eat or drink with a glass of water to wash pigments away before they have a chance to settle.
You Still Need to Brush and Floss
Veneers don't protect your mouth from the effects of oral bacteria. While they themselves cannot experience decay (and they protect the spaces to which they are adhered), they can still collect plaque and bacteria. An excess of bacteria can lead to tooth decay of your other teeth and gum disease. Untreated gum disease can lead to serious oral health, and even overall health, issues. To prevent these complications, it is important to brush and floss on a regular basis.
Dental Visits are Important
As a part of your oral healthcare regimen, twice annual dental visits should be included. Your dentist will perform a deep clean, helping to get spaces that you may have missed as well as perform a thorough oral exam. With this exam, trouble areas can be quickly spotted and action taken to prevent more serious issues from occurring.
With proper care, veneers will provide you with a beautiful smile for many years. If you are interested in learning more, or you currently have veneers and would like to know more about keeping them in tip top shape, schedule an appointment with your dentist today.
If you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment, please call us at (360) 312-3187 today.