Cosmetic Dentistry: Am I a Candidate for Dental Veneers?

cosmetic dentistry Bayside, NY

People who want to improve their smiles often turn to cosmetic dentistry. Patients can choose from numerous elective procedures to fix imperfections of the teeth and gums, and dental veneers are one option. This method uses a very thin porcelain shell to cover up a variety of cosmetic complaints. It is a popular choice because they look natural, last a long time and are durable.

Suitable and unsuitable candidates

People choose cosmetic dentistry to help with various aesthetic issues. Good candidates for veneers are those with particular dental concerns:

  • Worn enamel
  • Unevenly-shaped teeth
  • Chipped, cracked or broken teeth
  • Gaps or odd spacing
  • Discolored or stained teeth
  • Short or long teeth
  • Crooked teeth

Veneers are not the right choice for all people. If someone is suffering from gum disease or tooth decay, placing veneers would only make these issues worse. Veneers are also not a good alternative for someone who has a mouth of crooked and misaligned teeth. Braces or other alignment procedures would need to occur first before veneers would be an option.

There are certain habits that indicate someone may not be a good candidate. These practices include nail-biting, teeth clenching, chewing hard items such as pens or ice and teeth grinding.

Procedure for dental veneers

Candidates who choose veneers as a cosmetic dentistry method can expect the process to take place over a series of dental visits.

Consultation and treatment plan

During the initial visit, the dentist discusses the patient’s goals. An exam is conducted to ensure veneers are the appropriate choice, and a mock-up may be made to show the patient how the end result will look.

Veneer preparation

Before veneers can be created and placed, the teeth need reshaping to make room for the shells. The dentist removes some of the tooth’s enamel and then makes an impression of the tooth. This model is sent to a lab that fabricates the permanent veneers. If necessary, temporary veneers are fitted until the real ones are ready.

Bonding of the veneers

When the permanent veneers are finished, the patient makes another trip to the dental office. During this visit, the dentist makes sure the veneers match the other teeth and fit correctly. If need be, the color or shape is adjusted. Next, the dentist cleans and polishes the teeth for veneer preparation.

To place the veneers, the dentist roughens the enamel, which enhances strong bonding. Dental cement is applied, and the veneer is attached to the front of the tooth. A special light helps harden the cement to hold the veneers in place. Any excess cement is removed, and additional adjustments are made.

After getting veneers, the patient can resume normal activities, including eating and drinking, right after the appointment. Some people may notice a sensitivity to cold or heat, and they may feel some rough spots on the teeth. These should disappear in a couple of days.


Cosmetic dentistry is a popular option for people who want to change the appearance of their smile. Dental veneers are a good choice to address many imperfections and help improve self-esteem.

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