Veneers are thin, custom-made shells crafted of tooth-coloured materials designed to cover the front side of teeth to improve the overall appearance of teeth. They are made of either thin plastic resin or porcelain and can be placed to:
- Correct poorly formed or mildly mal-positioned teeth
- Close gaps between teeth
- Mask internal stains
- Restore partially broken-down teeth
Tooth preparation is minimal and confined to the enamel structure. The veneer is bonded to the tooth structure with tooth-coloured resin cement. Several visits are necessary to complete treatment. Patients should be aware that this is usually an irreversible process because it’s necessary to remove a small amount of enamel from your teeth to accommodate the shell.
WHY SHOULD I CONSIDER WHITE FILLINGS?
Most people have fillings of one sort or another in their mouths. Nowadays fillings are not only functional, but can be natural looking as well. Many people don’t want silver fillings that show when they laugh or smile because they are more conscious about the way they look.
ARE WHITE FILLINGS AS GOOD AS SILVER AMALGAM FILLINGS?
White fillings have always been considered less long lasting than silver amalgam fillings. But there are now new materials available with properties comparable to silver amalgam, and these are proving to be very successful. The life expectancy of a white filling can depend greatly on where it is in your mouth and how heavily your teeth come together when you bite. Your dentist can advise you on the life expectancy of your fillings.
IS IT WORTH REPLACING MY AMALGAM FILLINGS WITH WHITE ONES?
It is usually best to change fillings only when your dentist decides that an old filling needs replacing. If so you can ask to have it replaced in a tooth-coloured material.
White fillings are not always appropriate for teeth with large cavities. An alternative would be to place porcelain restorations such as inlays or crowns.