Dental veneers have been looked down on as a cosmetic procedure, but as far as cosmetic treatments go, they are the most effective way to alter your appearance. Either being used as part of a restoration, making a single tooth blend perfectly with the rest of your natural smile or as a full set to completely rejuvenate your appearance, dental veneers are commonly available at many clinics and easy to procure with a dentist Fulham.
Veneers are extremely thin layers of material attached to the front surface of the tooth; the very first ones were acrylic and temporary. Many materials have been tried over the decades and polymer composite is currently the most common. They not only have excellent range in colour and translucency, but share similar mechanical properties to natural enamel.
Are veneers destructive?
One of the criticisms of veneers is the need to remove enamel from the front surface of the teeth before they are attached. This process is referred to as etching; the idea is to create a rough or ridged surface on the front of the tooth that results in a much better bond, allowing an adhesive to hold the veneer in place.
It was the quality of the adhesion between the veneer and the tooth that limited the lifespan and practicality of veneering, so relatively deep etching would need to be carried out. Thanks to better adhesive materials becoming available, most dental cements have been phased out and have been replaced with UV cured resins. Not only does this provide a much stronger bond, but minimises the need for etching and gives far greater control over the curing process, allowing final adjustments to be made when the veneers are fitted.
The veneering process
Veneering involves a measuring and a fitting session. During the measuring session, current measurements are taken by creating a dental mould of the teeth that are to be veneered; these are sent to a dental laboratory which will fabricate the veneers, slightly oversized and over thick, but to precise colour and translucency specifications.
The second session will be booked once the veneers have arrived at the clinic. Each veneer will be placed on a specific tooth and trimmed to better fit. Then a small amount of enamel will be removed with a dental drill leaving a rough surface, allowing your dental team to place the veneer on top of the tooth. Its position will be adjusted and the resin partially cured using a UV lamp periodically; your dental practitioner will check the veneer is still in the correct position and once the resin is fully set, will carry out a final sculpting of the veneer. This may simply be cutting it to size or it may be giving it the appearance of wear and tear, matching the rest of your teeth depending on the aesthetic goals that were agreed upon before the procedure started.
So depending on the number of veneers and the quantity of sculpting, the time it takes to carry out veneering varies greatly. No local numbing agents are used so you should be fine to drive and operate machinery after the procedure, unless your dental practitioner informs you otherwise.