A dental veneer is simply a shell that’s affixed to the outside of a tooth to mask defects in the underlying teeth. Typical materials for veneers are ceramic, porcelain or composite resin.
Veneers take two main forms – direct, formed directly on your teeth by the dentist, or indirect, created at a dental laboratory. Direct veneers are minimally invasive and best suited for teeth with minor problems.
The procedure involves removing part of the existing tooth to accommodate the veneer. Initially your dentist will accurately measure the necessary teeth to ensure a perfect fit. The surface is then prepared and the veneer glued into place.
The procedure is generally takes two visits to the dentist. Temporary veneers are applied to protect the tooth between visits.
Another big plus for veneers is that they can eliminate the need for more expensive dental treatment.
Care must be taken not to abuse veneers because the thin porcelain shells or composite layers can be damaged or break.
If the tooth is badly damaged then a crown may be the preferred solution.