Veneers are just like false fingernails that are permanently fixed to the front of a tooth to beautify it and to change its shape into one that is more aesthetically appealing. The most natural looking veneers almost always involve modifying the surface of the tooth to obtain the best profile and stop the tooth looking ‘blocky’ and unnatural.
Veneers can be made in many materials.
- Ceramic – The most natural looking are made of ceramic in the laboratory by a skilled technician to an exact tooth colour map that the dentist prescribes. They enable the tooth to be lengthened and lightened as required. Well designed veneers are almost as strong as the original tooth. Ceramic veneers are the most expensive but are also the most lifelike, they are the best material for masking darkened or root filled teeth. There are many different types of ceramic, ask your dentist if you are interested in more information.
- Composite – Usually composite veneers are fabricated in the mouth by the dentist. The resin is patted onto the prepared tooth and using different shades and translucencies. It is then polished and shaped before the finished product is achieved. Modern composites can achieve a remarkable lifelike effect but it is much harder to mask dark teeth using this method. Because there is no laboratory component they are less expensive to make.
- Acrylic – This is usually considered a material of the past due to the increased strength of modern composite resins. Acrylic veneers are made in the laboratory.