Alexandria Total Dentistry
General & Cosmetic Dentistry located in Alexandria, VA
Veneers are a fast, simple, and effective way to get the beautiful smile you’ve always wanted, all without having to wear braces. These thin, custom-fitted porcelain shells can completely transform your teeth, making them an ideal solution for a range of common cosmetic dental problems. At Alexandria Total Dentistry in Alexandria, Virginia, Daniel J. Lee, DMD, and Steven J. Lee, DDS, specialize in ultrathin veneers for a natural-looking smile. If you’re in the greater Washington, D.C., area and you’d like to learn more about veneers, call the office or schedule an appointment online.
Veneers Q & A
What are dental veneers?
Dental veneers, also known as laminates, are exceedingly thin porcelain shells that are custom-made to fit over the fronts of your teeth. Because they change the color and shape of your teeth, veneers are used to help conceal cosmetic flaws and restore lost tooth structure.
Once they’re permanently bonded to the front side of your teeth, veneers can hide a wide range of flaws, including:
- Crooked, broken, or chipped teeth
- Uneven tooth edges or spacing between teeth
- Oddly shaped or worn teeth
- Discolored or permanently stained teeth
Veneers offer an easier way to repair teeth, making them an attractive alternative to porcelain crowns. A dental technician custom-creates veneers in a lab, working from a model provided by your dentist at Alexandria Total Dentistry.
How long does it take to get veneers?
The team at Alexandria Total Dentistry offers traditional veneers as well as Lumineers®, which are minimally invasive and don’t require any drilling or shots. Getting Lumineers requires two appointments.
A dental consultation is the first step in getting veneers. During this appointment, you’ll have a comprehensive oral exam to help diagnose any cosmetic issues. Then, your dentist will take an impression of your upper and lower teeth to send to the dental lab, and help you choose the right shade of white for your veneers.
During your second appointment, your dentist lightly etches the surface of your teeth to prepare them for bonding. Then, after cleaning your teeth with special bond-promoting chemicals, the veneers adhere to your teeth with dental cement, which is hardened with a special light beam.
If you choose traditional veneers, you’ll need to make three office visits. That’s because traditional veneers, which are slightly thicker than Lumineers, require more preparation to file down the surface of your enamel so your teeth will accommodate the thickness of the veneer.
How do I keep my veneers looking good?
Your dentist at Alexandria Total Dentistry will check your veneers in a follow-up appointment after the first week or two to make sure that they’re still securely in place.
Because porcelain veneers are permanently bonded to your teeth, they’re incredibly strong and durable. To ensure your veneers last as long as possible, though, it’s necessary to maintain good oral health habits, including brushing and flossing at least twice a day.
To preserve the vibrancy of your new smile, it’s a good idea to cut back on staining beverages and foods, including coffee, tea, red wine, and berries. Although porcelain veneers are more resistant to staining than your natural tooth enamel, they can’t be bleached or whitened if they become discolored.
To learn more about the benefits of veneers, call the office or schedule an appointment online today.