You may have heard about how versatile and effective porcelain veneers are as a cosmetic dentistry solution to a variety of aesthetic problems. From discoloration to cracks and chips to gapped teeth, porcelain veneers have the ability to completely transform your smile in just three appointments.
Here’s how they work: Porcelain veneers are thin “covers” for your teeth made from advanced ceramic. They essentially allow your dentist to create a new exterior for your teeth to completely change your smile’s appearance, from color to size to shape. We also offer BioClear composite veneers. These composite veneers provide the perfect cosmetic solution for many situations.
Better yet, when cared for well, porcelain veneers can last decades — research indicates that more than 90% of porcelain veneers are still in place after ten years, and nearly 85% are still in place after twenty. With statistics like that, it’s no wonder so many people visit Rancho Mirage cosmetic dentist Dr. Rod Strober at Country Club Dentistry for veneers.
Brushing and Flossing with Your Porcelain Veneers
If you want your porcelain veneers to keep you smiling for twenty years, it’s important to take care of them well! This means taking care of your natural teeth. While veneers are not susceptible to decay, your real teeth are still underneath them. In other words, cavities are still a concern. Veneers can also become stained, just like your real teeth, so you should perform dental hygiene practices to ensure they stay as beautiful as the day you first get them!
First things first: Brushing and flossing are still a top priority! To keep your teeth under the veneers safe from decay, brush twice a day with a soft-bristled brush, and floss daily. If you’re brushing effectively, it should take about three minutes to get your whole mouth gleaming. It’s important that you listen to recommendations about what kind of toothpaste you use for your veneers. Most kinds of toothpaste are fine, but some–especially those advertised as whitening toothpaste–are very abrasive and can damage your veneers.
If you’re not confident in your brushing abilities or have trouble with the fine motor function of tooth brushing, an electric toothbrush is a great addition to any dental hygiene routine. Electric toothbrushes can help you brush thoroughly and consistently.
Get regular checkups and cleanings as before. If you don’t, surface deposits can build up on your veneers. In addition, hardened plaque buildup, called tartar, can accumulate on your veneers. This will mar their appearance. Don’t try to remove tartar at home. Tools for removing tartar can damage veneers. Avoid kinds of toothpaste labeled “tartar control.” These are often highly abrasive and can damage your veneers.
If your regular dentist is not the Rancho Mirage cosmetic dentist who placed your veneers, make sure the hygienist knows you have them. Some dental tools can damage veneers if not used carefully.
If mouthwash was a part of your oral hygiene routine before veneers, you may need to make a change! Alcohol and mouthwashes that contain alcohol can damage the bond between your veneer and your tooth. This is less of a concern if you’re just drinking alcohol. Even if you are drinking straight spirits, the alcohol has less contact with your teeth. It is more of a concern with a mouthwash that you move around in your mouth for an extended period of time.
For most people, mouthwash is unnecessary. However, if you miss it, try an alcohol-free mouthwash to get that fresh feel without the damage.
Other than good oral hygiene, there’s not much you have to do to preserve your veneers.
You don’t really have to worry about staining your veneers. In general, veneers are more stain resistant than your natural teeth: they’re protected with a glaze that can repel most stains. Even if they do get discolored because of stains clinging to the front of the veneer, they should polish up well again.
To test stain resistance, one study soaked veneer materials in coffee. After one week of soaking, many veneer materials hadn’t picked up any discernible stains. After a month of soaking, they picked up visible stains but polished to look like new. Soaking in coffee continuously for a month might be equivalent to several years of coffee drinking. This means that having your Rancho Mirage dentist polish your teeth at your checkups every six months should be enough to keep them bright and beautiful.
Veneers are strong, but they’re not indestructible! You should avoid using your teeth for anything but food. Chewing on pens or fingernails, or using your teeth as tools to open bottles all put your porcelain veneers at risk of damage.
If Rancho Mirage cosmetic dentist Dr. Strober gave you a night guard to protect your veneers from teeth clenching (bruxism) make sure you wear it every night. Otherwise, bruxism can damage veneers or cause them to detach.
In addition, wear a mouthguard whenever you play sports, even if it’s just for fun. Even your family’s annual Thanksgiving touch football game can get out of hand. Best to be safe.
Get Veneers in Rancho Mirage
Your porcelain veneers can serve you well for many years if you care for them appropriately! During your consultation, Rancho Mirage cosmetic dentist Dr. Rod Strober can help you understand how to properly care for your veneers.
If you want to discuss porcelain veneers with an experienced Rancho Mirage cosmetic dentist, call (760) 832-7915 or contact us online to make an appointment.