When it comes to our teeth, we want the best-looking smile possible. There are a variety of treatments that can help us achieve this, from implant-supported dentures to dental veneers.
Veneers are a popular cosmetic dental procedure if you’re looking to improve the natural appearance of your smile.
Veneers are thin, custom-made shells made of porcelain or composite resin that are bonded to the front of the teeth. This is an advanced dental care method and the best solution for transforming chipped, discolored, or misaligned teeth into a beautiful smile. They can also make your teeth look longer and straighter.
If you are considering veneers, you’ll likely want to know how long they will last. The lifespan of your veneers will depend on a variety of factors, such as what materials they’re made of and how well you take care of them.
In this article, we’ll discuss common questions we get asked so that you can make an informed decision about whether you would be a good candidate for this cosmetic dentistry procedure.
How long do they last on average?
While they’re typically considered a permanent cosmetic solution to improve a smile’s appearance, veneers may not last a lifetime.
There are a few factors that will affect the lifespan of dental veneers. These are some of the most important ones to keep in mind:
1. The type of veneer you choose
There are two main kinds of veneers, both of which are made of durable materials that can withstand normal wear and tear. These are porcelain and composite resin veneers.
Composite veneers are made of a composite resin material that is bonded to your teeth and can last between 5 to 10 years.
Porcelain veneers, on the other hand, are made of a thin layer of dental porcelain that is bonded to the front of your teeth. They are often considered the gold standard in terms of veneers because they are very strong.
Porcelain veneers are generally more expensive than composite veneers, but they are also more durable and longer-lasting. They can last 10 to 15 years before needing to be replaced.
Temporary veneers are made of a thinner material and used to protect the front surface of the teeth while your new veneers are being made. Since they’re meant to stay on your teeth for a short period of time, they’re glued on with a mild layer of dental cement. Typically, these only last about 10 days.
2. The health of your teeth and gums
If you have healthy teeth and gums, your veneers will last longer than if your teeth and gums are unhealthy. Good oral health provides a strong foundation for veneers. Gum recession, gum disease, and other dental conditions can cause the veneers to become loose.
Excessive pressure from the clenching of the jaw and grinding of the teeth can also impact the longevity of the veneers.
3. Your lifestyle choices and your oral hygiene routine
Your lifestyle choices can also make a big difference. For example, someone who consumes coffee, red wine, or tobacco products may have to replace their veneers more often than someone who doesn’t.
If you maintain good oral hygiene and don’t skip regular visits to the dentist, you can extend the life of your veneers.
What causes damage to veneers
There are a few things that can cause damage to veneers, including:
- Brushing too hard
- Eating crunchy or hard foods
- Dropping or hitting them
- Grinding your teeth
If you do damage your veneer, don’t panic. Call our office and we’ll help you decide the best course of action. Trying to fix them yourself could end up causing more damage.
How to care for your veneers
If you are considering getting veneers, it’s important to know that they require some special care. Luckily, caring for them is simple.
These are the best ways to ensure your veneers stay looking their best:
- Maintain proper oral hygiene. Taking care of your veneers is not much different than caring for your natural teeth. Daily brushing and flossing are important for removing plaque and bacteria from your mouth, which can otherwise lead to tooth decay. Do not use abrasive toothpaste.
- Be careful with what you eat and drink. Avoid hard, crunchy, or sticky foods that could damage your veneers (i.e. ice, hard candy, gum).
- Use a straw when drinking beverages that can stain your teeth (i.e. coffee, tea, red wine).
- Avoid habits that can damage your veneers, such as biting your nails or chewing on hard objects (i.e. pen caps).
- Avoid smoking.
- Use a mouth guard if you grind your teeth.
- Visit your dentist for regular checkups. Your dentist can spot any problems early and take steps to prevent further damage.
- In the event that your veneers become damaged, call us right away. Don’t try to fix it yourself.
If you follow those suggestions, you will help prolong the life expectancy of your veneers.
Signs your veneers need to be replaced
Even though veneers should last a long time, they’re not indestructible and will eventually need to be replaced.
If your veneers are starting to chip or crack, call your dentist right away. In some cases, they may be able to repair them. However, if the damage is severe, you may need to get a new one.
Another sign that you may need to replace your veneers is if they become discolored or stained.
Finally, if you notice any gaps between your veneers and your gums, or that they’re becoming separated from your natural teeth, it’s time for a new set.
If you’re not sure whether or not you need to replace your veneers, it’s always best to consult with your dentist.
Do veneers come off easily?
Veneers are very strong and durable. However, if you do not take care of them properly, they can become damaged or in the worst cases, come off. If your veneers do come off, you will need to see your dentist to have them re-bonded.
Temporary veneers, on the other hand, are a lot more fragile and may come off during the short period of tooth preparation if you’re not gentle with them. Follow your dentist’s specific care instructions.
Do veneers ruin teeth?
No, veneers do not ruin teeth. In fact, they can actually help to protect your teeth from further damage. Apart from a very small amount of enamel, veneers do not require the removal of any major tooth structure and are considered a very conservative treatment option.
We know that your smile is important to you and any cosmetic repair can be a significant investment. Rest assured that with the proper care, your veneers can last for many years.
If you’re looking to improve the appearance of your teeth, call Kootenai Dental Group in Coeur d’Alene, ID today at 208-762-8750 for a free consultation!