Enhancing your smile with cosmetic dentistry is becoming increasingly popular. The Dental Economics Journal reports that the field has grown 12.5 percent within the last five years. The uses of veneers and crowns is fueling that growth.
If you are one of those who will soon be rocking a movie star smile, there is one thing you must do beforehand —whiten your existing teeth. Once your artificial tooth is placed, it can’t be whitened. So the smartest thing to do is get all of your teeth pearly white and then have the artificial tooth matched to that bright white shade.
If you are getting the majority of your teeth, or the teeth that are most prominent when you smile replaced by veneers, whitening is not as big of a deal since the artificial teeth will all be the same color. But if you are just getting one or two veneers placed, matching is definitely more important.
WHY CAN’T ARTIFICIAL TEETH BE WHITENED?
Veneers are not porous and stain resistant, which means that coffee, tea and wine will not absorb into the porcelain. By the same token, they are bleach resistant. Whitening compounds will not be absorbed just as staining compounds will not.
Currently, you might not be worried about the whiteness of your natural teeth. So you might not see the urgency for whitening. But later, say 10 years down the road, if you are wishing your teeth were whiter and beginning the whitening process, any crowns, briges, implants, or vaneers you have will unfortunately have to remain the shade they are at; unless you’re willing to have a new appliance made which costs thousands of dollars to repeat the process. Imagine a fresh, pearly white smile, with one dull fake tooth sticking out like a sore thumb…
While a veneer becoming stained is very rare, there are some options for treating it. Your dentist may be able to buff or polish out an imperfection. Another idea is to apply whitening gel to the back of your veneer teeth. The whitening gel may be able to permeate the natural tooth material in the back of your veneer and possibly reflect through the tooth to give it a brighter appearance from the front. When cement or resin is used at the very edge of the veneer to place it, it is possible that it may become stained. Talk to your dentist about a solution for trying to fix this “leakage.” This situation is very rare and can be avoided by receiving quality veneers from a qualified dentist. The most expensive but also the most effective solution? Get new veneers in any shade you want!