If you’ve recently had porcelain veneers placed to cover tooth imperfections, you’re probably aware of how beneficial this method of treatment can be. But now that they’re in place, do you know how to properly care for them and extend the life of your veneers? The investment you’ve made in your smile is one you want to last, right? If so, let a cosmetic dentist explain how to keep your veneers healthy and strong and what to do if one should break.
What Are Porcelain Veneers?
When considering how best to hide the imperfections on your teeth, you probably researched many options, one of which included porcelain veneers. These thin coverings not only fill in the gaps between your teeth, but they also hide discoloration and cover any teeth that might have minor chips or cracks. Using an adhesive bonding, the customized replacements are placed over your natural teeth, creating a dramatic smile transformation.
How Do I Take Care of Them?
Once they’re in place, it’s important that you know how to take care of your new porcelain restorations. Your dentist will first begin by explaining the importance of good oral health. Brushing your teeth twice a day for two minutes, flossing at least once a day, and rinsing with an antiseptic mouthwash is crucial to preventing tooth decay and gum disease. Other ways to care for your veneers include:
- Avoiding hard, acidic foods and drinks. Limiting or avoiding hard, sticky foods, acidic foods and drinks, sugary products, and dark-colored beverages will keep your veneers lasting longer. Coffee, tea, soda, and red wine can damage your teeth and cause stains. Should you opt to drink any beverage that has lots of sugar or can result in staining, rinse your mouth with water or immediately brush your teeth after you’ve finished drinking.
- Don’t use whitening toothpaste. You have a new and improved smile that is shiny and beautiful. Why mess that up with an abrasive whitening toothpaste? Since porcelain veneers are color stable, there is no need to use this type of toothpaste.
- Avoid tobacco products and stop smoking. Smoking weakens your immune system, and should you develop problems with your oral health, the healing process will be much slower and more difficult. Smoking also causes stains, and while veneers are essentially stain-resistant, over time, the nicotine will begin to dull the shine on your veneers.
What Happens if I Break or Chip One of My Veneers?
Accidents can happen, and while you may try to avoid them at all costs, not all of them are preventable. Should you accidentally chip or break one of your veneers, you should do the following:
- If possible, retrieve the broken piece and bring it to your dentist to see if it can be re-bonded.
- Call your dentist as soon as possible to let them know what happened. If they can, they will get you in quickly. Otherwise, you might have to wait a few days.
- When arriving for your appointment, your dentist will examine the tooth and the broken veneer and discuss possible options with you, such as re-bonding, repairing, or replacing.
Porcelain veneers can give you the smile you’ve always wanted, but they must be properly cared for. Make sure you follow your dentist’s instructions as it pertains to caring for your veneers, and you’ll continue to have a showstopping smile for years to come.
About the Author
Dr. Darren Koch DDS, PA, graduated with the highest honors from The Rochester Institute of Technology with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biotechnology. He then went on to earn his Doctor of Dental Surgery degree, graduating with honors in 2001, from The University of Buffalo. As a trusted cosmetic dentist, he can help you get rid of the imperfections and achieve the smile of your dreams with porcelain veneers. To learn more about porcelain veneers and how they can help you, contact us at (919) 859-6633.