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Cosmetic dental options have improved over the past 10 years or so – that much is true.

Often it’s hard for our patients to choose between treatment modalities until they have all the facts about their options. We use two different methods to re-shape and contour teeth that are misshapen, broken, chipped, discolored, set too far apart, rotated, unsightly, or in poor position. The first method is Bonding; the second method is Veneers.

What is Bonding?

There are significant differences between the treatments. Dental bonding uses a composite (plastic-based) resin the same color as your teeth; we shape it to mimic the original look of your tooth. We then cure the resin with an ultraviolet light, rendering it as hard as most natural tooth structure. We do this treatment in our dental office, without wait time or laboratory cost. It is minimally invasive and painless. The drawback? Composite material tends to have an element of opacity to it, so bigger restorations do not have the luminosity of natural tooth material.  Bonding should be cared for in the same manner as natural teeth, including regular brushing and flossing.

What Are Dental Veneers?

Dental veneers are thin strips of porcelain, about the thickness of a baby’s fingernail, that we place over your teeth. They permanently cover the front, sides, and a portion of the back of the teeth. Porcelain is used in many different dental restorations due to its brilliant ability to mimic the look and luminosity of real teeth. Porcelain doesn’t stain and can maintain its brilliant white luster for years.


What Issues can Veneers Solve?

If you dislike anything about your smile, veneers are an ideal solution. Teeth too close together, too far apart, discolored, oddly shaped, or even crooked? Veneers are the answer. They can even change the size and shape of teeth and hide cosmetic issues like cracks or chips.

How Do Veneers Work?

Veneer placement usually takes two office visits to complete. During the first visit we will prepare your teeth by removing the outer layer of enamel, crafting temporary veneers to last until the permanent ones are lab created. This ensures your veneers look natural and fit your teeth perfectly. Once we have finished the prep work, we take impressions of the teeth that will be receiving veneers and send them to our lab. Artisans there craft the veneers out of carefully chosen porcelain. During your second visit, we place the veneers on your teeth using permanent dental cement.

Caring for Your Veneers

Veneers require special care. Flossing and tissue care are critical to ensure the 20+ years of life expected from these restorations. It’s especially important to not use your teeth as tools – you can’t open bags, boxes or cans with your teeth or bite into things that aren’t food. Brush and floss with extra care – you’re a walking work of art with veneers! Curious about what veneers can do for your appearance? Call our office (503) 675-4594 to schedule an appointment.

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