Porcelain Veneers Aftercare: Simple Habits Protect Your Smile
By Steven Kail on July 21, 2014
Porcelain veneers can transform a smile marred by staining, chips, or misalignment in just a couple of dental visits. Once completed, it takes only a few simple daily habits to maintain that beautiful smile.
The dentists at Premier Dental Center serving Jackson, Brownsville, and Bells, advise patients that simple porcelain veneers aftercare can do much to prolong the lifespan of their veneers while preserving their smile. With the proper care, porcelain veneers should last 10 to 15 years.
Porcelain Veneers Aftercare
Porcelain veneers are thin shells of porcelain that are placed on the front of teeth. They effectively transform a smile by concealing a number of flaws, including discolored, chipped, cracked, or crooked teeth.
Porcelain veneers are durable, but good dental habits will contribute to a longer lifespan for your veneers. Luckily, taking care of porcelain veneers is not very different from taking care of your teeth. You should:
- Practice Good Dental Hygiene. Good oral hygiene is essential in prolonging the life of your veneers. Good dental habits will keep your veneers, teeth, and the crevices around them clear of plaque and tartar, which can introduce decay in the tooth. If a cavity develops, you will need to have the veneer temporarily removed so the decay can be treated. To avoid cavities, you should floss daily and brush twice a day.
- Be Gentle. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and non-abrasive toothpaste. Hard toothbrushes and abrasive toothpaste can damage the polish on veneers.
- Avoid Gum Disease. Good oral hygiene will help you avoid gum disease, which can cause gums to recede and leave an unsightly gap at the top edge of the veneer.
- Visit Your Dentist Regularly. You should keep your regular visits with your dentist, who can spot early signs of decay or gum disease before a major problem develops.
Avoid Bad Habits
In addition to good oral hygiene, you will want to avoid habits that can damage your porcelain veneers. Some habits to avoid:
- Chewing on Hard Objects. Though durable, porcelain veneers are not as strong as teeth. You should avoid chewing hard objects, such as pens, ice, or fingernails, which can chip your veneers and teeth.
- Foods and Drinks That Cause Stains. Porcelain veneers are stain resistant; however the adhesive that bonds veneers to teeth is not. The adhesive can stain and cause the edges of veneers to appear dark or yellow.
- Do Not Smoke. Smoking discolors the edges of porcelain veneers.
- Do Not Grind or Clench. Chronic grinding and clenching of teeth, called bruxism, can damage your teeth and veneers. Unfortunately, since bruxism often occurs when people are asleep, the problem is hard to control. If you suspect you grind your teeth at night, your dentist can fit you with a night guard that will help protect your teeth.
- Physical Injury. Accidents, falls, and collisions can cause chips or cracks in veneers. If you play contact sports, you should wear a mouth guard to protect your teeth.
If you have veneers and have questions about how to care for them, or, if you are considering getting porcelain veneers and have questions about veneers in general, please contact one of our three offices in West Tennessee.
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