Fancy the idea of treating yourself to veneers this December? Worried about getting value for money?
One of the biggest concerns around veneers isn’t how they’ll look – it’s how they’ll last.
With prices for composite veneers typically starting at just under £500 per tooth and the cost of porcelain veneers rising to around £900, it’s no wonder people want to be confident they’re a worthwhile investment.
Here the team at The Harley Street Smile Clinic take a look at why there’s no need to worry. And how, with the right care, veneers can be for life, not just for Christmas.
Are veneers permanent?
There are various ways of looking at this question.
Strictly speaking, no, veneers themselves aren’t permanent. However, it does depend on the type of veneers you go for – and your definition of permanent.
Allow us to explain…
Porcelain veneers involve filing away a small amount of tooth enamel, this helps to ensure a smooth, natural fit and prevents veneers from feeling too bulky. Because the natural tooth is reduced, all be it only minimally, once you’ve committed to porcelain veneers, there’s no going back – you can’t revert to natural tooth.
But why would you want to? Done properly, veneers will look great. The only thing you may change your mind about is the shade you’ve chosen, so it’s reassuring to know whilst the treatment can’t be reversed, porcelain veneers can be replaced.
Referred to as ‘non-prep’, composite veneers don’t involve any tooth reduction and can be classed as non-permanent as they leave you with the option of returning to your original smile.
How long do veneers last?
The standard lifespan of quality porcelain veneers is around 15 years but, with the appropriate care and good dental hygiene, there’s no reason they can’t last much longer than this.
Veneers are wafer-thin, and whilst they are designed to be durable, care still needs to be taken. If you’re reckless – attempting to open Christmas parcels with your teeth, hammering the festive nut selection, or developing a year-round penchant for drinking mulled wine – or neglect a proper care routine, it will have an impact and reduce their lifespan.
What type of veneers will last the longest?
Porcelain veneers: we’d be disappointed if porcelain veneers didn’t last for at least 15 years. Ideally, we’d expect you to be able to get 20 or more years of enjoyment from them.
Composite veneers: as a thin layer of resin applied directly to the tooth, this type of veneer typically only last 2-5 years.
How to prolong the lifespan of veneers
- Regular check-ups
Veneers are fitted to your regular tooth, so it’s essential to continue with routine dental appointments to keep your oral health on track and maintain a healthy smile.
- Proper brushing
Especially in the early days, when you’re still getting used to wearing veneers, it can be tempting to avoid brushing your teeth or to only apply minimal pressure when you do. This is a mistake. Brush as normal, for approximately 2 minutes (and twice daily) to keep your mouth clean and healthy.
Some people believe flossing may be harmful to veneers – risking dislodging the fitting. But there’s no need to worry. It’s just as important to floss veneered teeth as it is natural.
- Mindful eating
Diet plays an important role in oral health – even if you have veneers.
Just as with a natural tooth, excessively hard, chewy food can chip veneers. Too much sugar can cause decay and gum disease. And a rich diet of dark food (think red wine, coffee, and curries) can cause surface stains over time. So taking care not to overindulge in any of these things, will help to maximise the lifespan of veneers.
- Taking care
Veneers may offer an extra layer of protection to teeth but they’re not invincible!
Remember not to use your teeth as a tool. If you play sports wear a mouth guard and if you suspect you may grind your teeth, speak to your dentist about wearing a guard at night.
At the Harley Street Smile Clinic, we’re so confident in the quality of the veneers we fit, that we guarantee them for at least 5 years.
To find out just how great you could look with veneers, get in touch. Send in a photograph of your smile, along with a few details about what it is you’d like to change about it, and as part of our free e-consultation we’ll get back to you with our professional recommendations. Go on, put more sparkle into this and future Christmases, with dental veneers from the Smile Clinic.