Are Porcelain Veneers Permanent?
One of our most popular cosmetic dentistry options is porcelain veneers. These wafer-thin shells are placed over teeth to disguise cosmetic imperfections, and have a very high rate of satisfaction. Unfortunately, porcelain veneers are not permanent, but they can be extremely long-lasting in the right candidate and with proper care.
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Porcelain Veneers are Irreversible but Long-Lasting
Although porcelain veneers are not considered a permanent procedure since they will likely have to be replaced at some point, they can last for decades as long as you take care of them properly. Some patients may never need to replace them at all.
Porcelain veneers are, however, irreversible. They require your natural teeth to be filed down in order to make room in your mouth for the veneers. Once your enamel is filed down, it does not grow back, so you will always need to have veneers or crowns on the affected teeth.
If you are uncomfortable with the thought of filing your natural teeth down, we also offer Lumineers, which often require less prep than porcelain veneers. Lumineers are not as durable or long-lasting, but they are usually reversible. We will listen to your concerns and let you know whether you are a better candidate for porcelain veneers or Lumineers.
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Caring For Porcelain Veneers
How to take care of your veneers after they’re placed
In order to make sure your porcelain veneers or Lumineers last as long as possible, there are some steps you should follow. Great oral care is the best way to ensure your veneers stay in good shape.
Here are some of the basic rules to follow for porcelain veneer maintenance:
. Show up to your biannual checkups: Having a deep clean and dental checkup regularly means that we can spot potential problems before they develop fully, and we can keep your teeth cleaner than you can on your own.
. Practice basic oral hygiene: Brush twice a day for two minutes, and floss at least once a day. Tooth decay is the main reason why porcelain veneers fall off.
. Don't use your teeth as tools or chew on hard or sticky foods: Porcelain veneers are cemented on and stand up to everyday chewing, but there is a possibility for them to chip, break, loosen, or even come off entirely if you use your teeth to open a package or chew ice every day.
. Aside from tooth decay, the other main reason a veneer might fall off or break is from trauma to the mouth. If you play contact sports, you will probably want to wear a mouth guard to protect your porcelain veneers.
. Address teeth-grinding. Do you grind or clench your teeth when you sleep? It's called bruxism, and if you're getting veneers, you should talk to your dentist about it. Allowing it to go unchecked may not result in cracked veneers, but they typically don't last as long, and the fix could be as simple as a nighttime mouth guard.
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What kinds of habits can shorten the life of your veneers?
As a matter of fact, the same ones that can damage your natural teeth. Veneers can chip and crack like natural teeth, so biting down on hard foods – such as ice and hard foods – as well as inedible items can result in a damaged surface. Veneers are capable of staining as well, so we warn against repeated exposure to coffee, wine or tea.
How long do dental veneers last?
Porcelain veneers are generally sturdy and should last between 10 and 15 years with proper care and no-prep veneers last around 5 to 7 years. Depending on the type of wear or damage they incur, veneers may need cosmetic repair or full replacement. It's up to the wearer to protect them in order to increase their lifespan.
Are veneers permanent or removable?
Veneers are not removable, they are put on with the intention that they are never coming off. Admittedly most people who choose to have veneers are looking for a permanent solution to their cosmetic problems, but don’t be fooled into thinking you can just have them popped off at a moment’s notice and be back to square one. Once you have porcelain veneers, you will always need them.