The Health Benefits of Dental Veneers Long Term - 123Dental

The Long-Term Benefits of Dental Veneers

patient in dental chair

Veneers are a popular treatment for correcting cosmetic dental issues, from minor crowding to gaps to decay. But did you know veneers offer more than just aesthetic benefits?

In this article, we’ll dive into the long term advantages of dental veneers, the oral health benefits of veneers, and if you are a good candidate for this popular cosmetic dental treatment.

The Durability Factor: How Long Do Veneers Last?

Whether you choose porcelain or resin composite veneers, they will need to be replaced eventually. However, with consistent dental checkups and a good oral health routine, veneers offer a long lifespan.

Composite veneers are less durable than porcelain veneers and have a shorter lifespan. Typically, I tell my patients they can expect composite veneers to last between 4 to 8 years (or even 10 years in some instances).

Porcelain veneers can last from 10 to 20 years with good maintenance. In some cases, I’ve seen well-maintained porcelain veneers last up to 25 years.

Whether you opt for porcelain or composite veneers, they may require replacement if:

  • You notice your gums are pulling back and exposing the margin between the root of the tooth and the veneer
  • Your veneers are broken or chipped (this can happen over time due to the pressure from daily use or significant changes to your bite)
  • You notice changes to your bite 
  • Your natural teeth are noticeably stained and mismatched from the colour of your veneers
  • You are experiencing pain or discomfort from your veneers
  • You notice looseness or shifting

Cosmetic Transformation: Achieving Your Ideal Smile

Dental veneers can produce amazing, long-lasting aesthetic transformations.Here’s a look at some of the cosmetic benefits of veneers. 

Natural-Looking Results That Mimic the Appearance of Real Teeth

The biggest aesthetic advantage of veneers is the natural-looking result they offer. This is especially true of porcelain veneers, which mimic the natural light-reflective properties of real teeth.

Long-Lasting Brightening Improvements

If your smile is dull, discoloured, or stained, your first thought may be professional teeth whitening. This may be the right option for you, but dental veneers are another great choice for a brighter smile.

Dental veneers are resistant to staining and can offer long-term improvements in the brightness and overall appearance of your smile.

Correct a Variety of Cosmetic Concerns

Expertly crafted veneers can look just like your natural teeth but better. Veneers are extremely versatile and can effectively correct a range of cosmetic issues, including:

  • Gaps in teeth
  • Misshapen teeth
  • Worn 
  • Minor crowding
  • Chipped teeth
  • Minor damage
  • Overall appearance
  • Minor Decay
  • Crookedness or minor alignment issues

dentist checking dental veneers

Preservation of Tooth Structure: A Minimally Invasive Approach

One of the biggest misconceptions about veneers I hear from patients is that a lot of enamel needs to be removed. Or that veneers will damage or ruin their teeth.

Fortunately, veneer applications only require a minimal amount of enamel removal, especially for composite veneers. And well-placed dental veneers do not damage natural teeth. In fact, they offer protective properties by covering the surface of the teeth and shielding them against plaque and damage.

Typically, only about 0.3 – 0.5 millimeters need to be removed from the surface of the tooth. This ensures the strength of the tooth is maintained and also preserves the tooth nerve.

Whether I apply porcelain or composite veneers, I always opt for the most minimally invasive approach. And I’ll only recommend veneers if they are a suitable option that will offer you long-term benefits.

For instance, I had a younger patient come in with perfect enamel and healthy teeth. He had some discolouration he was concerned about and some crowding issues. He told me he wanted porcelain veneers.

While his teeth and gums were certainly healthy enough for veneers, I advised him against it. Rather, we discussed professional teeth whitening and Invisalign. He opted for a take-home whitening kit and Invisalign treatment. The results were stunning!

In such a young patient, I’m usually hesitant to remove any enamel knowing replacement will eventually be required. Each time veneers need to be replaced, a bit more enamel will need to be removed. 

For younger patients or individuals with severe enamel damage, I typically opt for other treatment routes. 

Stain Resistance: Maintaining a Brighter Smile for Longer

Veneers are naturally resistant to staining and can be an effective way to brighten dull or discoloured teeth. Once placed, veneers are naturally resistant to staining and can give patients a long-lasting improvement to their smile brightness.

However, I always tell my patients to be careful of how often they consume highly pigmented-foods and beverages. 

Frequent consumption of these foods and drinks can stain your natural teeth and cause a mismatch with your veneers. If this happens, we can discuss professional teeth whitening options to restore a matching appearance between your real teeth and veneer.

Improving Oral Health: The Indirect Benefits of Choosing Veneers

Achieving a whiter, straighter smile is one of the biggest benefits of dental veneers. But the advantages of veneers go beyond appearance.

Dental veneers offer numerous protective benefits for your natural teeth and long-term oral health benefits, including:

  • Healthier Gums — Custom-fitted veneers help support healthy gums by reducing your risk of gum disease.
  • Tooth Decay Prevention — Since they function as a protective barrier on the tooth’s surface, veneers can help prevent the buildup of plaque and bacteria and reduce the risk of cavities.
  • Improved Oral Hygiene — With their smooth surface, dental veneers make it easier to keep teeth free of debris and food particles, contributing to easier oral hygiene.
  • Structural Support — Veneers provide structural support for cracked, misaligned, or chipped teeth. This can stabilise the teeth to help prevent further damage.
  • Provide Protection for Damaged Enamel — Dental veneers add a protective layer to damaged enamel. This can protect the enamel that is left from further damage.
  • Reduce Sensitivity — Veneers can help reduce temperature sensitivity. They serve as a protective buffer, shielding enamel and exposed dentin against hot and cold temperatures.

lady holding dental veener example

Customisation and Compatibility: Tailoring Veneers to Your Dental Needs

Because of their versatility and a high degree of customisation, veneers are a popular cosmetic dental treatment. Dental veneers can address discolouration, damage, wear and tear, gaps, uneven teeth, and other issues that prevent you from having the smile you want.

When working with a patient who wants long-term improvements for their smile, I first determine if they are a good candidate for veneers.

When assessing if a patient is a good candidate for veneers, here are some of the factors I consider: 

  • Enamel Integrity — One of the most important aspects of determining if an individual is a good candidate for veneers is how much enamel they have left to bond to. Without enough enamel, the veneer will be weaker and more prone to breakage. In cases of insufficient enamel, the individual may experience better results from a crown.
  • Bite — A patient’s bite is one of my biggest areas of focus when it comes to veneer assessment and planning. It is crucial to make sure veneers will not cause bite issues that require correction once the veneers are complete.
  • Tooth Repositioning Required — If significant changes are needed for tooth repositioning, I may recommend that a patient undergo minor orthodontic work first or as an alternative to veneers.
  • Underlying Tooth Colour —  If I evaluate a patient who has extreme discolouration, such as greyish, dark, or black tones, I typically recommend crowns as an alternative to veneers. Discolouration that is too dark is difficult to disguise with veneers as the underlying tooth colour is at risk of showing through.

Once I confirm veneers are a suitable treatment for a patient, I work closely with them to determine their goals and hopes for their smile.

You can choose how many teeth you want covered with veneers, if you want to brighten your smile, what kind of tooth shape you want, and more. I offer a fully customised experience to ensure you get the smile you’ve dreamed of.

Meticulous planning is key to veneers that are functional and beautiful. Every smile is unique and requires a detailed assessment to determine if veneers are the ideal solution.

Long-Term Care and Maintenance: Ensuring the Longevity of Your Veneer

Without proper veneer aftercare, you are at risk of damage, discoloration oral health issues, and needing veneer replacement.

Here are tips I recommend to my patients for long-term veneer care to keep their teeth and gums healthy and maximise the lifespan of their veneers:

  • Follow a good oral health routine that consists of brushing twice a day and flossing daily 
  • Attend regular dental checkups
  • Opt for a low abrasion toothpaste (I’m always happy to give recommendations if needed)
  • Brush gently using gentle circular motions and do not overbrush
  • Limit highly pigmented foods and beverages, such as tomato sauce, berries, black tea, coffee, and red wine 
  • Use a soft-bristled toothbrush to avoid scratching the surface of your veneers
  • Avoid smoking or tobacco product use
  • Remember: teeth are not tools and should not be used to open bottles, seals, or packages
  • Do not chew on fingernails, pens, ice cubes, etc. 
  • Ask your dentist if you should wear a custom mouthguard during contact sports
  • If you grind your teeth at night, ask your dentist about wearing a protective splint
  • Moderate your intake of acidic foods and drinks (lemon water, soft drinks, vinegar, etc.)

Veneers: A Worthwhile Investment in Your Smile and Confidence

Dental veneers are a cost-effective way for individuals with healthy gums and teeth to improve their smile and hide minor dental imperfections. With high durability and a natural appearance, expertly placed dental veneers can provide a long-term boost in confidence and a lasting solution for improved oral health.

If you have questions about veneers or would like to find out more about the long-term benefits of veneers, contact us to talk with our friendly team. We can book a complimentary consultation for you to find out if you are a good candidate for veneers and get you started on your journey to your healthiest smile.

Dr. Jack Brazel: Specialising in general dentistry, Invisalign, and cosmetic procedures, Dr. Brazel is committed to delivering exceptional dental care focusing on aesthetic outcomes.