Simply explained, composite resin is a thin layer of material placed on your teeth. Composite resin can be applied to adjust discoloured teeth to a whiter colour. Skew teeth or teeth that are too far apart can also be improved to appear in a flowing line, even broken off teeth can be repaired with composite veneers.
Composite Dental Veneers
Composite dental veneers are done in one treatment. The treatment is practically painless, afterwards you can talk, eat and especially laugh, right away.
Composite dental veneers are made from resin, filled with glass particles that determines the eventual abrasion strength and sheen. When choosing a composite facing, you consult with your dentist which color best suits your teeth and your wishes.
Advantages of composite veneers
- Composite veneers are relatively cheap. As it is created directly in your mouth, there are no charges from a dental technician, which makes composite resin veneers much cheaper than porcelain ones.
- They are created in one treatment.
- They can easily be repaired.
- Composite veneers are an ideal solution when a bite increase should be realized. In people who have suffered from erosion (damage by acid) or e.g. a too low bite for other reasons, composite can be used with a bite elevation to raise the bite.
Disadvantages of composite veneers
- Composite discolours easier than porcelain.
- Tarnish and dulling off happen faster than porcelain veneers because composite is microscopically less smooth.
- There is a lack of transparency in a composite veneer. Composite is not very transparent, while dental enamel is.
Porcelain Dental Veneers
Porcelain facings are made of a mixture of ceramic metal oxides that are sintered together at high temperatures. This leads to a transparent glass matrix. The transparency of a tooth is simulated by adding just the right amount of clouding agents to the porcelain. In this way, various kinds of porcelain imitate the transparency of the dentin or enamel so that the porcelain veneer faithfully mimics the tooth over its entire surface.
The manufacture of porcelain facings is done in at least two sessions. During the first treatment, a print is made of your teeth. On the basis of the print, the dental technician creates as natural as possible appearing porcelain veneers. During the second appointment, the porcelain veneers will be fitted first. If the color and shape of the veneers are approved, they can then be placed by your dentist.
Advantages of porcelain veneers
- Porcelain veneers look beautiful and natural.
- The material is much smoother than composite and is therefore less susceptible to discoloration.
- Porcelain veneers therefore will also last much longer. It can appear quite nice for 10 years or longer. Incidentally, this is very much dependent on how they are used and maintained. Someone who grinds his teeth, bites his nails or does only moderate brushing, will experience much lower durability than someone who does not grind and practises perfect oral hygiene.
Disadvantages of porcelain veneers
- Porcelain veneers are much more expensive than composite ones. Because they are made in a dental laboratory, there are added dental technology costs.
- A second session is required for placement.
- Porcelain veneer are almost impossible to repair. Sometimes they may be fixed with composite veneer, but is is rarely as beautiful as the original. A broken porcelain veneer usually means a completely new porcelain veneer must be made.
After the placement of veneers
The first few days after the treatment will take a little getting used to, although they feel the same as your natural teeth. This will certainly the case if the shape of your teeth has changed, and talking may be problematic temporarily as certain sounds may be deformed.
Veneers do not require special maintenance compared to natural teeth. We advise you to just like with natural teeth, brush twice a day. Also, use dental floss, interdental brushes or toothpicks to clean your teeth.
Alternatives to veneers such as teeth whitening or braces
Veneers are not the only solution. Instead you may also opt for teeth whitening if the problem is discoloration of your teeth. If your teeth are crooked, you can also consider braces. Each treatment has certain advantages (benefits) and disadvantages that must be weighed against each other. The condition of the teeth, the degree of discoloration or tilt, the price tag and the duration of treatment are all factors influencing the decision. This is of course best done in consultation with your dentist. The dentist will explain the alternative treatments and options available and will advise what is the best option.