So you’ve gotten some brand-new veneers, and you love your new smile. Now what? Assuming you’ve done your homework, you’re probably aware of how long your veneers are supposed to last – up to seven years for composite veneers, and up to 15 years for porcelain veneers.
The question is, how do you make sure that your veneers make it all the way to the finish line before they need replacing? By taking great care of them.
Getting veneers is a big decision; not only does the process cost a fair bit of money, but you’ll also have to get them regularly replaced for the rest of your life.
However, this is a decision that many people are happy to make. Veneers are often used to correct dental issues such as staining, cracks, or crooked teeth – issues that can seriously impact someone’s self-esteem.
They may not be medically necessary, but they can still be life-changing.
This is why you should try to find a top-notch option like Atlanta Dental Spa for cosmetic dentistry – a facility that’ll look after your overall experience, not just your end results.
You’ll eventually be able to replace your veneers, but that won’t be for several years after getting them for the first time; in any case, they should look and feel amazing from the moment you get out of the dentist’s chair!
If you want them to continue to look amazing, though, you’ll have to observe good dental habits along the way. Even though veneers are resilient and durable, they aren’t totally impervious to staining, chipping, or cracking.
Plus, you don’t just have to consider your veneers; you have to take care of your teeth and gums too! If they deteriorate after you’ve gotten veneers, that could cause complications when it’s time to address tooth decay or gum disease.
With that introduction, it’s time to discuss ten different ways to look after your veneers to keep them shining bright.
#1: Use the right toothbrush
Even though veneers are made to be durable, they still deserve special treatment from your toothbrush.
Make sure you wait for one to two weeks after they’re initially bonded, and then use a soft-bristled toothbrush whenever you’re brushing your teeth.
This won’t just benefit your veneers; it’ll also be helpful for your gum line, which can be irritated by toothbrushes with overly stiff bristles.
#2: Address teeth grinding
Teeth grinding, or bruxism places a tremendous amount of strain on both natural teeth and veneers.
It usually happens when you’re asleep, so you may not even realize that it’s happening. If you have a habit of grinding your teeth, you’ll need to protect your veneers (and your teeth!) from its negative effects.
A bite guard should help with this, as they cushion both teeth and veneers from being ground down.
#3: Avoid excessive alcohol
Some dentists say that alcohol will ruin the glue that binds the veneers to the teeth, while others say that this is a myth. One thing that everyone agrees on, however, is that alcohol is terrible for teeth.
Even if a drinking habit won’t ruin your veneers, it could damage the underlying structure to which they’re attached.
Once that’s happened, you’ll likely need extensive reconstructive surgery to repair the damage.
#4: Quit smoking
Even if you’re a smoker who didn’t really intend to quit, getting veneers is a great reason to stop. Smoking will eventually stain both teeth and veneers, in addition to causing many other health issues.
If you’re interested in preserving the appearance of your new smile, quitting smoking will make a big difference.
#5: Avoid heavily pigmented foods
Do you know all the foods and beverages that stain tooth enamel? Things like berries, soy sauce, red wine, tea, coffee, and sodas can harm your teeth and your veneers.
Porcelain veneers are quite stain-resistant – with composite veneers being slightly less so – but both types of veneers can become discolored if you regularly indulge in these foods and drinks.
#6: Avoid acidic and sugary foods
These foods will affect your teeth more than your veneers, but we’ve already established how important it is to take care of one for the good of the other.
Both acidic and sugary foods are known to contribute to cavities, tooth decay, and gum disease – all of which mean bad news for your veneers.
#7: Avoid hard foods
Most of us don’t need much encouragement to lay off the raw carrots, but what about peanuts or other delectably crunchy foods? Well, if you want to play it safe with your veneers, you’ll avoid these foods as much as possible.
Veneers are made to be extremely durable, but we’ve all experienced what it’s like to bite down on hard food and feel like we’ve just accidentally shattered a tooth.
With veneers, this could actually happen, so it only makes sense to minimize the risk.
#8: Don’t use your teeth as tools
Veneers may be strong, but they aren’t as strong as natural healthy teeth. If you’re the kind of person who opens beer bottles with their molars, it’s definitely time to stop as soon as you get veneers.
You’re essentially just asking to chip or crack a veneer, and even if it doesn’t happen the first time, there’s no guarantee that it won’t happen the next time.
#9: Use the right toothpaste
The toothpaste you use should be non-abrasive, and preferably not contain strong whitening ingredients; these both have the potential to erode your veneers.
#10: Observe good dental hygiene
Just like with real teeth, veneers should be brushed twice a day, and flossed once a day.
This will help prevent your gums from receding due to gum disease and stave off potential tooth decay as well.
Veneers represent a pretty big investment, so they’re definitely worth protecting with a few basic changes to your dental care routine.
Even if you have to cut down on a few enjoyable vices, your smile will look all the better for it!