Do you have porcelain veneers? If so, then it's very important that you are taking care of them. Porcelain veneers can last for up to 20 years if the right steps are taken after they're initially placed. In this blog post, we'll talk about how long porcelain veneers typically last and what patients need to do in order to extend their longevity.
Porcelain Versus Composite Veneers
While porcelain is the most common type of veneer in use, there is also a composite option. Composite veneers tend to last about 5 years versus an average of 20 years with porcelain, however they do cost a bit less.
How should you choose between the two? In terms of what material might be right for you, it's important to find the best dental office in your area that can offer a consultation. The dentists at R&R Dental will take into account many factors like how many teeth need veneers as well as what specific teeth need them and then make some recommendations based on those considerations.
The Best Use Cases for Porcelain Veneers
Porcelain veneers are typically used on teeth that are in mostly good shape, yet have some chipping or discoloration. Porcelain veneers can be an excellent option for someone in their 20s who wants to avoid repeat trips to the dentist every few years. They tend to last for a very long time and are almost unnoticeable when you smile.
Porcelain veneers are also great for a person with tooth decay that has had some amalgam fillings done in the past, but wants to improve their appearance without invasive dental work. The porcelain material is strong enough to withstand a lot of use, and may be a good replacement as your older filling need replacing.
More serious tooth decay may require a cap, and that's a decision your dentist will help you make after evaluating the condition of your teeth.
Foods to Avoid When You Have (Temporary) Porcelain Veneers
Many times you will have a temporary veneer for a few days or weeks while a lab is preparing your permanent one. It's important to follow a few guidelines when you have this temporary veneer in place.
- Avoid foods and drinks that are high in acids, or anything that may stain your teeth like coffee or wine
- Steak or other tough meats should be avoided, along with soft cheeses
- Don't chew ice or for that matter, any hard candy or other foods that may chip the veneer material
Once you have your permanent veneer, there will still be a few guidelines you should follow.
Foods to Avoid With Permanent Veneers
If you have porcelain veneers, there are a few foods and drinks that can cause damage to your teeth. These foods should still be avoided in order to maintain the health of your new smile:
Highly acidic or staining products like coffee, wine, fruit juices, soft cheese and hard candy (e.g., lollipops) which can easily chip the porcelain material. Beef jerky or other tough meats that are difficult to chew.
Do not brush immediately after eating - wait at least 30 minutes before brushing.
Other Concerns with Porcelain Veneers
There's a few other things to keep in mind so that you get the most lifespan out of your veneers. Avoid grinning too much to avoid teeth grinding. Eating or drinking hot things with the porcelain veneers can cause damage, so avoid extremely hot or cold beverages.
If you play contact sports, be sure to wear a mouth guard. Also, you should never use your teeth as a 'tool' to open packages or bottle tops.
And last but not least: don't smoke!
As we mentioned before, with proper care your porcelain veneers should last an average of about 20 years. But that's not to say they can last longer. Take care of yours by following the tips in this article and you'll be smiling for many years to come!