Dental Veneers FAQ

Dr. Tam Nguyen offers dental veneers in Round Rock, Texas, to help you achieve a picture-perfect smile. If you have questions about veneers, we invite you to read our FAQ page to find answers. Please call Paramount Dental at 512-310-0330 if you have any additional questions or to schedule your personal consultation with our skilled dentist.

What are dental veneers?

Dental veneers are thin, custom-made shells designed to cover the front surface of teeth to improve their appearance. These shells are bonded to the teeth, changing their color, shape, size or length. Veneers can be made from porcelain or from resin composite materials. Porcelain veneers resist stains better than resin veneers and better mimic the light reflecting properties of natural teeth.

What issues do veneers correct?

Veneers are routinely used to fix a variety of dental issues, including:

  • Teeth that are discolored due to root canal treatment, stains, excessive fluoride or large resin fillings that have discolored the tooth
  • Teeth that are worn down
  • Teeth that are chipped or broken
  • Teeth that are misaligned, uneven or irregularly shaped (for example, have craters or bulges in them)
  • Teeth with large spaces or gaps between them

What are the benefits of dental veneers?

The benefits of dental veneers include:

  • A natural and aesthetic final result
  • A stain-resistant smile (if porcelain veneers are used)
  • A customized final result, as the shade of white for your veneers can be matched to your natural teeth or used to whitening your smile
  • A minimally invasive treatment – veneers do not require the same extensive shaping of the tooth as crowns, yet still provide a strong and aesthetic end result

What is the dental veneer procedure?

Getting a dental veneer usually requires three trips to the dentist – one for a consultation and two to make and apply the veneers. The procedure involves:

  1. Consultation and Treatment Planning: This first step involves active participation between you and your dentist. The dentist will examine your teeth to ensure dental veneers are appropriate for you and discuss the procedure and some of its limits.
  2. Preparation: To prepare a tooth for a veneer, the dentist will remove about 0.5 millimeters of enamel from the tooth surface, which is roughly equal to the thickness of the veneer to be added. Before trimming off the enamel, you and your dentist will decide on the need for a local anesthetic to numb the area. Next, your dentist will make a model or impression of your tooth. This model is sent out to a dental lab, which constructs your veneer. It usually takes about two weeks for the veneers to come back from the lab.
  3. Bonding: Before the dental veneer is permanently cemented to your tooth, your dentist will temporarily place it on your tooth to examine its fit and color, making any necessary adjustments. The tooth will be cleaned, polished, and etched to allow for a strong bonding process. A special cement is applied to the veneer, which is then placed on your tooth. Once properly positioned, your dentist will apply a special light beam to the dental veneer, which activates chemicals in the cement, causing it to harden very quickly. The final steps involve removing any excess cement, evaluating your bite and making any final adjustments in the veneer as necessary.

How long do dental veneers last?

Dental veneers can last between 7 to 15 years. After this time, the veneers would likely need to be replaced. You can extend the life of your veneer by properly caring for it.

How do I take care of my veneers?

Care for your veneers the same way you would your natural teeth. This includes:

  • Practicing good oral hygiene. Brush at least twice a day and floss daily. Use a non-abrasive fluoride toothpaste.
  • Although porcelain veneers resist stains, your dentist may recommend avoiding stain-causing foods and beverages (for example, coffee, tea, or red wine).
  • Avoid biting on hard objects like pens, ice or your fingernails.
  • Never use your teeth to open packaging or anything that will put undue strain on your veneers.
  • Wear a protective mouth guard if you participate in sports or are prone to grinding your teeth at night.
  • Continue to make and keep regular dental appointments for cleanings and exams. This is important not just for your veneers but also your overall oral health.