Thin, custom-made shells that are bonded to the surfaces of teeth, veneers provide a quick and long-lasting fix for teeth that are stained, chipped, misaligned, worn, or irregularly shaped. They’re a fantastic way to perfect your smile, and with proper care, they’ll last for a decade or more. To learn how to care for veneers, please scroll down.
How to Care for Veneers
Anyone who has worn traditional braces for any stretch of time knows that trying to care for a combination of teeth, gums, brackets, and wires can be nightmarishly difficult. Fortunately, learning how to care for veneers is the exact opposite. While it pays to be extra mindful about certain things, no special care is required to keep your veneers looking amazing. In fact, caring for your veneers is as easy as following these six simple tips.
1. Practice Good Oral Hygiene Daily
If you already have a solid dental hygiene routine, you probably won’t need to change it to care for your veneers. You just need to brush, flush, and rinse:
- Brush. Use nonabrasive toothpaste and either a manual or electric toothbrush to brush your teeth at least twice a day; ideally, you should brush after every meal.
- Floss. Floss at least once a day to remove particles caught between teeth and to protect the health of your teeth, veneers, and gums. It’s best to floss after every meal.
- Rinse. Swish some antiseptic mouthwash around your mouth once or twice a day to rinse it. Choose an alcohol-free mouthwash, because excessive exposure to alcohol can soften the bonding agent that holds the veneers to your teeth. While this softening wouldn’t cause the veneers to pop off, it might make them more vulnerable to staining and deterioration.
2. Avoid the Grind
Bruxism is the tendency to grind or clench your teeth while sleeping, and it’s bad news for veneers because it puts a lot of stress on them. Frankly, it’s also bad for your teeth and jaw joints, so if you suspect that you grind your teeth, speak with your dentist as soon as possible. Your dentist can fit you for a nighttime bite guard, which is sometimes referred to as an occlusal guard. Wearing this device while you sleep will protect both your new veneers and your natural teeth.
3. Chew Wisely
Veneers are quite durable, but they can chip and break. While normal foods shouldn’t present a problem, it’s best to avoid chewing on excessively hard materials like pens, nails, ice, and bones.
4. Protect Your Smile
Physical activity is an important part of a healthy lifestyle, but participating in basketball, football, wrestling, and other contact sports can endanger the health of your new smile. To protect your veneers and your natural teeth from potential trauma, invest in a mouth guard.
5. Beware of Stains
Like your natural teeth, veneers can be stained, so it’s a good idea to limit foods that are known to cause discoloration, like coffee, red wine, dark sodas, tea, soy sauce, and berries. Smoking is another source of stains, so if you smoke, you may want to consider quitting; not only will it improve your overall health, but it will also help keep your veneers white and bright.
6. Visit Your Dentist Regularly
Routine dental checkups are a must for people who want healthy teeth. Making it a point to see your dentist roughly every six months will help to protect both your teeth and your veneers by ensuring that any potential problems are spotted quickly and addressed before they become major issues. In addition, your dentist or dental hygienist will use professional equipment to polish your veneers and preserve their pearly-white gleam.
By masking any imperfections, veneers let you quickly and effectively improve your smile. If you have more questions about how to care for veneers or you want to further explore your cosmetic dentistry options, contact Duff Family Dental today if you live in or around Springfield, Missouri. We look forward to hearing from you!