We live in a world where physical appearance is key to almost everything. Whether you have a special event coming up, or simply a normal (going out to buy groceries) look, a good-looking tooth structure will always boost your confidence. You will get better chances at being hired, clinch a business deal, or even feel good when going out on dates.
One of the best ways to improve your physical appearance is by getting dental veneers.
But what exactly are they? Are they white enough to boost your smile? Can they get discolored? Can you whiten porcelain veneers?
Here’s all that you need to know about whitening your veneers.
What are veneers?
Veneers are one of the most popular treatments in cosmetic dentistry. They are known by different names, including porcelain veneers or dental porcelain laminates.
But exactly, what are veneers?
These are thin layers of porcelain placed over the enamel of individual teeth to improve their physical appearance. They are usually customized for individual patients and specific teeth, depending on their needs. For instance, they can be used when one has cracked or chipped teeth. They are also ideal in closing gaps.
How do veneers become discolored?
Although veneers are known to last long (upward of ten years), this doesn’t mean that they are not prone to staining ‒ just like natural teeth. However, just like your teeth, taking good care of your veneers makes them last longer and even maintain their white shade.
But, what makes them get stained?
It would be prudent to note that veneers are mostly made from either porcelain or composite resin. Porcelain veneers are ‘tough’ and don’t get easily stained or discolored. On the other hand, composite veneers may easily get surface stains when exposed to certain conditions.
Factors that contribute to the staining of veneers
Here are a few conditions that may lead to the discoloration of your veneers:
Although this may not happen immediately, extended use of such drinks without proper dental care and hygiene may lead to their staining.
The longer you wait before your next dental appointment, you will start to notice some small brown lines on your teeth where the veneers are bonded into place. This leaves your enamel exposed, which can easily cause staining without proper oral care and continued use of drinks like coffee or red wine.
This is because most of them were made with either plastic or more porous porcelain. The best veneers brands used by professionals today are way more durable.
This is because damaged dentin changes color to yellow, making the veneers appear discolored too.
Can you whiten veneers?
If your veneers become discolored, meaning they have a yellow or brown spot or layer on them, you may be tempted to try out at-home whitening treatment to restore their whiteness.
However, it would be prudent to note that porcelain veneers do not respond well to traditional whitening methods. If you are looking for tips on how to whiten veneers at home, whitening kits may not be on your recommended list. This is why it is crucial to consult your dentist before attempting any DIY teeth whitening methods on your veneers.
While you may not be very successful in whitening your veneers through at-home or traditional methods, it doesn’t mean that you cannot improve their overall appearance.
Professionals can assist you in removing the surface stains. That’s why it is crucial to maintain regular visits to your dentist to keep your veneers as bright as possible.
3 ways to improve the appearance of veneers
Look for tips on how to whiten veneers? Let’s now take a look at some of the ways that can help you to boost the appearance of your veneers:
If you have translucent, light-type veneers, you can try bleaching the back of your teeth. As you attempt to bleach your natural teeth, they’ll naturally whiten up, which is reflected through the porcelain veneer.
You can improve the appearance of your dental veneers by using toothpaste specifically designed to remove stains on veneers. If you have mild or minor stains showing up around the edges of your veneers, this would be the ideal option.
The toothpaste will help get rid of the composite build-up giving your teeth a whiter appearance. Your dentist can help recommend the best teeth whitening products to help whiten your veneers.
The other option (and perhaps the best) for whitening your veneers is visiting a cosmetic dentist. They are in a better position to understand the root cause of the staining and advise accordingly.
In some cases, the dentist will discover that a porcelain glaze is the main cause for your worn-out veneers. They will clean them professionally or, in a worst-case scenario, recommend replacing them entirely.
It is safe to try and whiten your veneers. However, traditional teeth whitening methods are not effective and may only whiten your natural teeth leaving out your veneers. We recommend consulting with your dentist first about whitening your veneers.
No. Traditional teeth whitening methods are not effective on veneers.
No. Baking soda is abrasive on veneers, making them wear down faster and easily get discolored.
No. The primary function of veneers is to correct aesthetic concerns like cracked or chipped teeth.