Pros and Cons of Porcelain Veneers

”Smile and the whole world smiles with you.” As the saying goes, a beautiful smile can lighten the hearts of those around you and give you an extra dose of self-confidence at the same time.  It’s obvious that our smile, or more specifically, our teeth, is important to us in many ways.  In a recent survey, 3 out of 4 adults in the United States believe an unattractive smile can hurt your chances at business success.

However it may be hard to smile when your teeth are uneven, chipped, or discolored.  If this is your problem, porcelain veneers could be the solution.  Porcelain Veneers, or laminates, are custom-made porcelain wafers that the dentist places over the fronts of the teeth to enhance their appearance and also to repair any flaws or damage.

If you’re thinking about getting porcelain veneers, then it is important to weigh the pros and cons of porcelain veneers:

PROs of Porcelain Veneers

Realistic Appearance – One of the features of porcelain veneers that is contributing to their rising popularity is their optic properties.  Porcelain is a ceramic that has many similar properties to the teeth’s natural covering, enamel.  Because of this, porcelain veneers appears very natural and realistic.

Stain-Resistant – Porcelain is a ceramic, and therefore quite ”glass-like”, its surface is extremely smooth and impervious.  This makes porcelain veneers quite resistant to permanent stains.  No need to worry about the coffee, wine, or cigarette stains.

Durability – Porcelain veneers are relatively long lasting – up to 15 years – compared to plastic (composite) veneers (~7 years).

Color Versatility – The color of a porcelain veneer can be selected such that it makes dark teeth appear whiter.

Ease of Shaping – Compared to crowns, porcelain veneers do not require extensive shaping prior to the procedure.

Improves Appearance & Restores Confidence – Porcelain veneers can help individuals with dental flaws such as teeth that are crooked, discolored, or have small gaps between them.  Veneers dramatically change a person’s smile and in the process, help improve their self-confidence.

CONs of Porcelain Veneers

Artificial – although they look realistic, porcelain veneers are artificial teeth, which may be a problem for those desiring a more natural solution to their dental problem.

High Cost – Veneers, especially porcelain veneers, are expensive.  Each veneer can range anywhere from $500 to $1000.  When that gets multiplied with the number of teeth that needs veneering, it becomes a costly investment.

Fragility – Although porcelain veneers are relatively tough, they are not impervious to any chipping/breaking when exposed to excessive impact or force, e.g. teeth grinding, eating hard foods, etc.  Repairing or replacing veneers then becomes an expensive endeavor.

Permanent Procedure – when its done, there’s no going back.

Side effects: Teeth Sensitivity – Since the veneering procedure requires the removal of enamel, your tooth may become more sensitive to hot and cold foods and beverages.

You may not be candidate – If you have unhealthy teeth (for example, those with decay or active periodontal disease), weakened teeth (as a result of decay, fracture, large dental fillings), have an inadequate amount of existing enamel on the tooth surface, or suffer from bruxism (teeth clenching).

Overall, most people find that the advantages porcelain veneers can bring, outweigh the disadvantages.  Porcelain veneers are an easy way to attain a perfect smile and a friendlier appearance.  The resultant natural-looking, well-aligned, whiter, more evenly-spaced teeth provide for that much sought-after cosmetically perfect smile.  That is the reason why veneers are so popular among professionals, actors and actresses and other public performers.

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