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Veneers- Questions and Answers

Q: What is a veneer?

A: A veneer is a thin layer of restorative material bonded over the tooth in order to improve the aesthetic look of the tooth or protect the damaged tooth. Porcelain veneers are used to make cosmetic changes to discoloured, chipped, or misaligned teeth. Basically, two kinds of materials are used in veneer treatments namely composite and porcelain.

Q: What can veneers be used for?

A: Veneers may be used to restore or correct the following dental conditions:

1. Severely discoloured or stained teeth
2.  Misshapen teeth
3. Teeth that are too small or large
4. Slight tooth crowding
5. Unwanted or uneven spaces
6. Worn or chipped teeth

Q: What are the differences between the two types of veneers treatment offered typically at dental practices in the UK?

A: There are two types of veneers that many cosmetic dentists offer. They are the Composite veneers and the Zirconia / Ceramic veneers.  The difference between these veneers are as follows:
Composite veneers are cheaper however, they do not have the longevity, strength, appearance, translucency, and durability as the Zirconia / Ceramic veneers.

Q: How long does the process take?

A: Getting veneers usually requires one – two visits over a ten days period. Veneers are created from an impression (mold) of your teeth that is then sent to a professional dental laboratory where each veneer is custom-made by hand for the Composite veneers (for shape and color) for your individual smile. The Zirconia/porcelain veneers are sometimes created by 3D computer printing and are much faster and thus, the procedure can be done in three-four days period of time, therefore only one visit would be needed for this choice.

Q: How much tooth structure is removed in order to place the veneers on the tooth?

A: A thin layer, about 0.5 millimeters, is removed. The layer of tooth structure needs to be removed in order to make room for the porcelain. Also, grooves are made across the tooth in order to properly secure the veneer on the tooth. This way the veneers won’t fall off and would have the proper contour without them being too bulky or have an unnatural appearance.

Q: If I want to have crowns/bridges and veneers treatment done, which treatment would be ideal to have done first and why?

A: With regards to the crowns/bridges, it is better to have the crowns/bridges done. The reason being, the veneers process is more of a cosmetic treatment while the crowns/bridges are more on the functional health and cosmetic side, as you would be able to cover/fill the gaps and have a normal bite.

Q: How many veneers do I need to get in order to have a symmetric smile?

A: For the number of veneers needed, the best way to check how many veneers you would need, simply, just smile in front of a mirror, count the number of teeth that are visible when you smile. Those would be the number of teeth you would need to have veneered. Typically, 4, 6, or 8 veneers to the top and similar to the bottom jaw, if your bottom teeth are visible when you smile. If you have a much wider smile then you can increase the number.

Q: With the fact that temporary veneers are sometimes used in between the treatment process, will they look realistic, fake, natural different than the normal teeth? Also, will I be able to eat as normal?

A: Temporary veneers. There is usually a period of time when you will have to wear temporary veneers. The reason being, that the tooth veneers need to made in a dental lab. The temporary crowns are one color (white), look natural, and yes, you can eat as normal as before having the temporary veneers. However, we normally suggest to our patients not to take big bites into steaks or big sandwiches, because they are not so securely placed on the teeth, as we would need to remove them in order to place the permanent ones on the teeth. They sometimes last longer than 2 weeks, maybe for a few months, but are not designed to last very long. Also, you do not have to worry about it looking very white and fake, as this won’t be the case. Most of our patients go for a lighter color veneers when the return to have the permanent ones put in place, so no worries there.
If you decide to have zirconia / ceramic veneers, up to 8 teeth can usually be completed within 4-5 business days.

Q: Do I have to get my other teeth whitened after getting veneers treatment?

A: You do not have to get the other teeth whitened, as they just might match with the veneers. However, if you have discolored teeth, then you can decide to have tooth whitening if you would like, but it’s not a requirement.

Q: How can I calculate the total price that I would need to pay for veneers treatment?

A: The total price is quite simple to work out really. Basically, you would just need to multiply the number of veneers you would like, times the price. For example, 6 x 327 = £1962. This would be the amount you would need to pay for 6 veneers. The same is for the Crowns/bridges.

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