26 Jan 2018 Bonding, Veneers and Lumineers
If your New Year’s resolution is to improve your smile, lucky for you, several options exist. We live in an age with advanced dental technology available to help us look and feel great.
See the other January blog entries to learn about GLO whitening and dental bridges. This article will discuss three other options you have to make your smile the best it can be—bonding, veneers, and Lumineers.
What is bonding?
You may not know it but you’ve probably already had bonding done in your mouth! Bonding is when a tooth-colored resin (a durable plastic) is put on your teeth with the help of an adhesive and a high intensity curing light.
Bonding resin is what dentists commonly use to fill cavities. Isn’t it great when you get a cavity filled with resin and you look in the mirror? It’s hard to tell which tooth has been worked on because the bonding resin looks just like a real tooth!
Besides filling cavities, bonding resin can be used for a number of different purposes that call all improve your smile:
- Fix chipped teeth
- Fix discolored teeth
- Close small spaces and gaps
- Make teeth look longer
- Change the shape of teeth
- Protect sensitive parts of teeth when gums recede
Advantages of bonding
- Can be done in 1 visit (unlike veneers which require 2+ visits)
- Removes only a small amount of tooth
- Anesthesia not always required
- Lasts about 10 years
Disadvantages of bonding
- Not as stain resistant as a porcelain crown
- Doesn’t last as long as crowns or veneers
- Can chip or break (but can be easily repaired)
What are Veneers and Lumineers?
Veneers are thin shells of porcelain custom-made to fit over your natural teeth for a natural, attractive smile. Veneers fix misaligned, chipped, stained, worn down, or uneven teeth.
Advantages of Veneers
- Difficult to stain
- Can greatly improve appearance of smile
- Can improve chewing ability if teeth are severely damaged
Disadvantages of Veneers
- Irreversible (Dentist must take off a lot of enamel in order to put on veneer)
- Last 10-20 years, will have to be replaced eventually
- Some sensitivity when first put on.
Lumineers—A type of veneer without the disadvantages
Lumineers are a specific brand of veneers that give the same look of veneers without the disadvantages of traditional veneers. Lumineers are different from traditional veneers in several distinct ways:
- They are completely reversible and can be taken off because they don’t require the original tooth to have the enamel removed because they are much thinner than traditional veneers.
- They are thinner and more translucent, making them look more like real teeth.
- They last 20+ years.
- Because no tooth reduction is required, there is no sensitivity afterward.
How many visits do both veneers and Lumineers require?
Both veneers and Lumineers require 2 visits. On the first visit, the dentist will take an impression of your teeth to be sent to the lab which makes the veneers. Lumineers patients then come back to a later appointment to have the Lumineers put on their existing teeth with adhesive. In addition, at the first visit, veneer patients will need to have the enamel removed from their teeth and a temporary veneer put in at the first visit. At the second visit, the veneers will be put on and adjusted.
All of these options can benefit your smile. Talk to your dentist to discuss the best options for you.