A veneer is a thin, custom-made moulding usually made from porcelain which is bonded to the front surface of a tooth. Veneers provide a rapid solution to hide stained, chipped, mis-shaped or crooked teeth.
Your dentist will provide more detailed advice about veneers.
Your dentist will prepare the tooth (or teeth). This involves shaving a tiny amount of enamel surface of the tooth, the same thickness that the veneer will be, to ensure the tooth stays the same size. This prepares the tooth surface for bonding the veneer in place later. The preparation should not cause any pain, but in some cases, a local anaesthetic may be given to prevent any discomfort.
An impression is then taken of the mouth, which will be given to a dental technician for them to build your bespoke veneer(s) to the required shape and size. A colour shade is taken of the adjacent teeth to ensure the veneer(s) blend in naturally. If several veneers are being made, they can be made to a lighter shade.
After preparation the tooth will look the same but will feel less smooth. In some cases, a temporary cover may be placed over the tooth, until the veneer is ready for fitting.
Once the veneer(s) are ready, any temporary cover is easily removed, and the veneer(s) will be tested in place to ensure there are no imperfections, before they are cemented into place. Adhesive is applied to the back of the veneer, then as it is placed into position, a bright light known as a curing light, is used to set it.
Your dentist will check to ensure that you are happy with the veneer(s) and that your bite is correct, making any small adjustment that may be needed.
Veneers should last for many years. However, veneers can be broken, chipped and cracked the same way as natural teeth can. Small chips may be able repairable, or the veneer can be replaced.
Regular visits to your dentist and dental hygienist are recommended, where they can check and clean the veneer(s) and recommend an appropriatel home care regime.