Veneers offer a relatively quick, long-lasting fix for teeth that are chipped, misaligned, stained or irregularly shaped. They can be a great way to help change your smile. Our Vancouver dentists are here to share some advice on how to properly care for them.
What are dental veneers?
Dental veneers are razor-thin pieces of porcelain used to cover imperfections and change the overall appearance of your teeth. They can alter the size, shape, length and colour of your teeth. Patients with broken, chipped, discoloured or gapped teeth might find themselves feeling more confident in their smiles following treatment.
While porcelain dental veneers are very durable, you'll need to make sure to properly care for them if you'd like them to last a long time. They have the potential to last for 10 to 15 years, or even longer, if they are well-maintained. In this post, we'll share some tips to help you properly care for and maintain your veneers.
Caring for Your Veneers
Taking care of your veneers is essential if you want them to last. While it pays to be extra mindful about certain things, no special care is required to keep your veneers in good shape. In fact, caring for your veneers is simple when you follow these tips.
Practice good oral hygiene.
If you already have a solid dental hygiene routine, you probably won’t need to change it to care for your veneers. You just need to brush, flush, and rinse:
- Brush - Use a non-abrasive toothpaste and either a manual or electric toothbrush to brush your teeth at least twice a day; ideally, you should brush after every meal.
- Floss - Floss at least once a day to remove particles caught between teeth and to protect the health of your teeth, veneers, and gums. It’s best to floss after every meal.
- Rinse - Swirl some antiseptic mouthwash around your mouth once or twice a day to rinse it. Choose an alcohol-free mouthwash, because excessive exposure to alcohol can cause the adhesive agents to soften. While this softening wouldn’t cause the veneers to fall off, it might make them more susceptible to staining and wear.
Avoid grinding your teeth.
Bruxism refers to grinding or clenching your teeth while sleeping, and it’s a bad habit for patients with veneers because it puts a lot of stress on them. It’s also bad for your teeth and jaw joints, so if you suspect that you grind your teeth, speak with your dentist as soon as possible. Your dentist can fit you for a nighttime bite guard. Wearing this device while you sleep will protect your veneers from damage.
Don't chew items that will damage teeth.
Veneers are relatively durable, but they can chip and break. While normal foods shouldn’t present a problem, it’s best to avoid chewing on excessively hard materials like pens, your fingernails, ice, and bones.
Protect your smile from damage.
Physical activity is an important part of a healthy lifestyle, but participating in basketball, football, wrestling, and other contact sports can endanger the health of your new smile. To protect your veneers and your natural teeth from getting damaged you should speak to your dentist regarding a sports mouthguard.
Be mindful of stains.
Just like your natural teeth, veneers can get stained, so it’s a good idea to limit foods that are known to cause discoloration, like coffee, red wine, dark sodas, tea, curry, and berries. Smoking is another habit that can lead to stains, so if you smoke, you may want to consider quitting; not only will it improve your overall health, but it will also help keep your veneers white and bright.
Routinely visit your dentist.
Routine dental checkups are a must for people who want healthy teeth. Making it a point to see your dentist roughly every six months will help to protect both your teeth and your veneers by ensuring that any potential problems are spotted quickly and treated before they become bigger concerns. In addition, your dentist or dental hygienist will use professional equipment to polish your veneers and preserve their pearly-white gleam.