In today’s dental world, there are many popular treatments available for patients looking to improve their smile. Some are better options than others, depending on what your preferences are and what your budget is. We’ll explore how these options differ from veneers, one of the most popular dental treatments today.
Veneers are thin pieces of porcelain that are adhered to the surface of your natural tooth to help restore your smiles natural color and shine. It can help correct problems like gaps, discoloration, cracks or uneven size. They can be expensive but are among the most popular of treatments, allowing for a quick fix for a beautiful smile. Veneers generally take three trips to the dentist, one for a consultation, and then two to make and then apply the veneers to the teeth.
First the diagnosis, which requires your active participation, in which you tell your dentist the end result you are trying to achieve. How do you want your smile to look? What do you want to feel when you look in the mirror? The dentist will make x-rays and impressions of your mouth to help create the veneers.
Dental composites are a tooth-colored resin that can fix spacing and size issues, and can even fill cavities! Placement usually takes a single visit, instead of the two or three for veneers. However, dental composite does not last as long as veneers and they can stain over time, depending largely on diet and lifestyle choices.
If what you are after is a pearly white smile, you may opt to go instead with a teeth whitening procedure. It is an in-office procedure that you can also do at home with custom-made trays. The tray is filled with a special gel containing hydrogen peroxide which will whiten the teeth. Typically this whitening lasts 6 to 12 months, while veneers can last 15 to 20 years. However, the procedure does not require that you file down the teeth, which is required in the veneer process.
Crowns are simply caps, made out of porcelain typically, that goes over a tooth. More filing and removal of healthy tooth tissue is necessary for the application of crows, but they are a more permanent solution. Often crowns are good for a single tooth that needs repair, or when a tooth has decayed and needs reinforcement. Crows can prevent damage to the teeth while adding strength and protection
Snap-On Smile is a custom-made, removable tray that simply slips over your real teeth, snapping into place without the need for any adhesives, bands, or wires! There is no need for filling and is completely reversible. However, there is a limit to what Snap-On Smile can do. IT cannot correct misaligns, or overlaps and your teeth may look too big because the tray fits over the teeth. They are more cost-effective but last only five years at most.
Lumineers is a brand of “no prep” veneers. They are thinner and don’t require much or any buffing or filing of the natural healthy tooth in order for them to be applied by your dentist. They are considered a reversible option because they can be easily removed if disliked. They are very thin, and so they cannot correct gaps or misalignments. They do last about as long as traditional veneers do, however.
Braces or Invisalign
The most conservative of all the options, braces and Invisalign are great with severe misalignment and spacing issues. They don’t require filling, and like veneers, they are intended for a permanent result. Because they gradually change the position of your teeth, they may take a year or more to finish treatment.