In the digital age where close-up selfies remain immensely popular, a beautiful smile has never been as essential as it is now. Having a beautiful smile means looking good on camera, and also means giving off a good first impression in both professional and social settings. However, with age and improper care, it is not unusual for your teeth to become discoloured. Fret not, for dental veneers are an inexpensive and painless way for you to restore and even improve your smile, helping you to regain your confidence in front of any crowd.
In this comprehensive guide to dental veneers, we will tell you everything you need to know about this dental procedure – what it is, the suitability, and any concerns you might have in terms of pain, cost – so that you can make an informed decision to improve your smile and your confidence.
What are dental veneers?
Dental veneers are essentially very thin pieces of porcelain that will help change the shape and shade of your teeth. They are bonded on top of a patient’s tooth, making the veneer the visible portion while hiding the imperfections of the patient’s natural tooth. Dental veneers can also space out teeth more evenly and fix teeth that have been damaged by decay. For the reasons mentioned above, dental veneers are becoming an increasingly popular cosmetic procedure for those looking to achieve the perfect smile.
Am I a good candidate to get dental veneers?
Your suitability for dental veneer treatment ultimately depends on the condition of your teeth. Dental veneers might not be suitable for teeth which have been severely damaged or decayed. In severe cases, damaged teeth might have to be removed before implants and a crown are used in replacement. Dental veneers might also be unsuitable for severely crooked teeth, which must first be straightened by using braces. However, dental veneers might be added after the teeth have been straightened. Those who are too young – generally under 18 years old – might also be unsuitable for a dental veneer because those below that age might not yet have had teeth fully erupted.
Conversely, dental veneers can be used if teeth are only slightly broken, crooked or have any other minor aesthetic issue. As such, they remain the best option if you want to remedy the teeth that have been discoloured by staining. Your dentist will be able to give you advice specific to your situation through a consultation.
What are some types of dental veneers?
While there are several types of dental veneers the two most common ones are porcelain veneers and composite veneers.
Porcelain veneers: Porcelain veneers, sometimes also known as ceramic veneers are, as its name suggests, dental veneers that are made from a type of long-lasting porcelain that can be bonded to a tooth. These are custom-made to fit the exact shape of the patient’s tooth, allowing it a more natural look. Porcelain veneers are therefore the recommended option if the veneer is to be applied to an individual tooth on the front of the patient’s mouth, which is the most visible and where the natural appearance of the veneer is most important. Although, the custom design of porcelain veneers does make it more expensive, they are nonetheless suitable for patients who want an instantaneous improvement in the way their teeth and smile look.
Composite veneers: Composite veneers are made of resin and tend to be less expensive than porcelain veneers because they are not custom-made. They are nevertheless useful for a wide range of minor aesthetic issues, including the correction of misshapen teeth. However, they might appear less natural and are also unsuitable for cases where the discolouration of the tooth is too severe.
How long do dental veneers last?
While dental veneers are not permanent, they do nevertheless last a long time. With proper care, you can expect your dental veneer to last between 20 to 30 years without experiencing any change in colour shade of the dental veneer. Their longevity means that many patients who have opted for this treatment are able to enjoy beautifully restored smiles after just a short and simple procedure.
Are dental veneers painful?
Not at all! The procedure for dental veneers is quick and painless in most cases. However, in some cases, the thickness of the tooth might need to be very slightly reduced before a dental veneer made of porcelain is bonded with the tooth using a special type of glue.
Do dental veneers look natural?
Yes, dental veneers are designed to mimic the natural look of your teeth in terms of texture, translucency and colour while fixing the imperfections of your smile. For example, the outer layer of your teeth, known as the dental enamel, is naturally slightly translucent. As such, dental experts have kept these details in mind when designing the dental veneer meant to replace and hide your natural teeth. These small details are important because teeth naturally have these characteristics. This also means that its important that you select a dental practice who use high-quality dental veneers, because veneers of low quality might not appear as natural, making them easily distinguishable from your natural teeth.
What is the cost of getting dental veneers in Singapore?
Dental veneer procedures are quick and easy, and are thus not as expensive as some might imagine them to be. However, prices vary depending on the reputation of the dental practice and the quality of the veneer used. In Singapore, a colour matched porcelain veneer can cost as little as S$850 per tooth, while composite veneers, which fill in the gaps between teeth cost only S$250 per tooth before GST. Both these prices even include consultations with the dentist, allowing you to make an informed decision and giving you a peace of mind before proceeding with the treatment.
While dental veneer procedures are quick, painless, and relatively inexpensive treatments with minimal risk, it is nonetheless not an option that suits for everyone, such as those whose teeth have been badly damaged or decayed. As with all procedures, getting a dental veneer is an important and near permanent decision that should not be undertaken without careful consideration and utmost due diligence. While this guide has been made as comprehensive as possible, it is important to speak to a reputable dental practice and get advice that is specific to your circumstance before making any decision.