The Proper Aftercare for Your Porcelain Veneers
Porcelain veneers are one of the most effective and versatile methods of giving patients a brand new smile. By bonding customized layers of porcelain over teeth, veneers can hide most types of imperfections while making teeth appear straighter, fuller, and whiter. Porcelain also happens to be one of the best dental materials in terms of aesthetics and durability. Still, like any restoration, patients must protect a veneer from damage, decay, and discoloration if they do not want to replace it prematurely.
When you get porcelain veneers at South Ogden Smiles, we want to help you make your investment last. Read up on how to care for your veneers after their installation and the various dangers that pose a threat to their lifespan.
Dangers to Porcelain Veneers
Normally, porcelain is a resilient dental material that can easily withstand daily biting and chewing habits. Just like normal tooth enamel, though, certain factors may pose a risk to veneers, resulting in their eventual replacement. Notable dangers to porcelain restorations include:
- Injury: Sudden physical force can chip or crack a veneer, such as during an accident or collision. Once broken, it is difficult to fix a veneer. In most cases, large cracks necessitate replacement.
- Improper use: Veneers are only meant to be used as your teeth should be used: for eating. If you use your teeth to open, grip or turn objects, there is a good chance that your veneers will be bent and chipped.
- Tooth decay: Because a veneer is permanently cemented to a tooth, it cannot be removed and reapplied in the event you need restorative dentistry. If decay forms within a veneered tooth, the veneer will have to be destroyed in the process of drilling to reach and treat the cavity.
- Bruxism: Teeth grinding at night can exert excess pressure on veneers, causing them to chip or become worn down.
- Discoloration: Porcelain does not stain as easily as tooth enamel, but certain foods and poor hygiene can elevate one’s chances of permanently discoloring his or her veneers.
Protecting Against Decay
One of the best ways to ensure the longevity of your veneers is to keep the underlying teeth healthy. Fortunately, veneers do not require any special treatment outside of what you should normally do in your daily hygienic routine. Still, patients are urged to remain diligent in their brushing and flossing habits, as even a small amount of decay can result in the early replacement of a porcelain veneer. Keep the following points in mind:
- Brush with toothpaste, two to three times daily
- Use a soft-bristled toothbrush to avoid eroding teeth and gums
- Brush carefully around the edges of older veneers, as small spaces may have developed between the veneer and the tooth
- Floss once a day between the edges of each tooth
Likewise, it is equally important to visit your dentist for regular exams and cleanings. A professional cleaning will more effectively get rid of stubborn plaque and tartar build-up, while the dentist can examine the condition of your teeth and any restorations.
Protecting Against Damage
Obviously, no one can foresee an accident; there are some instances in which veneers are simply damaged from an unfortunate mishap. Nevertheless, there are some steps patients can take to safeguard their veneers against chips and cracks. First, anyone who is at an elevated risk of injury should consider the use of a mouthguard. Namely, anyone who plays a contact sport should wear a mouthguard throughout play. Similarly, a night-guard may be worn over teeth at night for those who suffer from bruxism. By keeping teeth from grinding into each other, patients can save their porcelain veneers as well as their regular teeth from chips, erosion, and wear.
Patients should also avoid using their teeth on any non-edible objects. Chewing on fingers or opening plastic containers are just two examples of improper use that may lead to damage. Even chewing on ice can be dangerous, and as such, patients should be careful what they bite into with their veneers.
Keep Your Smile Beautiful
Schedule your next cleaning with us to keep your teeth strong and free of decay. Alternatively, consider asking us about a mouthguard or night-guard if you are worried about damaging your veneers in any capacity. Contact us today to schedule your appointment or to inquire further about your porcelain veneers.