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Robertson and Orchard, DDS

Keep Your Smile Flawless: When to Replace Porcelain Veneers

By N. Perry Orchard on October 25, 2014

A close-up of a woman's smilePorcelain veneers are durable, and they can mask flaws, instantly improving the smile's appearance. Well-cared for porcelain veneers can last for many years, but even the best cared for veneers will likely require replacement at some point. Knowing the signs of when porcelain veneers need replacement is important to prolonging the life of porcelain veneers. You can help keep your porcelain veneers looking their best for years to come with these helpful tips from Corpus Christi dentists Charles A. Robertson and Nicholas Perry Orchard.

When Do Porcelain Veneers Need Replacement?

Porcelain veneers can last well over ten years if cared for properly. Porcelain veneers should be replaced at the first signs of damage. Some causes for porcelain veneer replacement include:

  • Fractured veneer: Porcelain veneers are extremely durable, however, they can crack if enough force is applied to them. Regularly chewing on hard items, grinding your teeth, or experiencing a facial injury can lead to broken, chipped, or fractured veneers. Fractured veneers should be replaced immediately to avoid damage to the natural tooth.
  • Decaying natural tooth: Teeth with porcelain veneers are still susceptible to cavities and tooth decay. This is because the back surface of the natural tooth remains exposed. If any decay is found on the natural tooth, it must be treated, which may require porcelain veneer replacement.
  • Loose veneer: Over time, the special dental cement used to bond the veneer to the tooth may become loose. Loose veneers should be repaired as soon as possible to prevent plaque and bacteria from lodging between the loose veneer and natural tooth, which may cause cavities to form.
  • Dental discoloration: Though each porcelain veneer is custom-shaded to match the surrounding teeth, over time, color variations may occur, as the natural teeth are still prone to staining. Porcelain veneers are stain resistant, so they will not discolor along with the natural teeth. Some patients may see a noticeable difference as the veneers age, leading to the need for veneer replacement.

Prolong the Life of Your Porcelain Veneers

With proper care and maintenance, porcelain veneers can keep your smile looking flawless for years to come. You can help ensure a long lifespan for your porcelain veneers with these tips:

  • Practice good oral hygiene: Good oral hygiene is vital to maintaining oral health no matter what. Good oral hygiene habits include brushing twice a day and flossing at least once a day.
  • Don't skip regular check-ups: Regular dental check-ups are another important component to maintaining oral health and keeping your veneers lasting their longest. Regular dental check-ups allow your dentist to check for cavities and any damage to your veneers so any issues can be treated before they become major problems. 
  • Avoid abrasive toothpastes and brushes: Abrasive toothpaste and hard-bristled toothbrushes can damage porcelain veneers by scratching their surface or causing them to loosen or fall off.
  • Don't chew on hard items: Avoid chewing on hard items, like your fingernails or plastic pen caps, to prevent fracturing or chipping your veneers. 

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Keep your porcelain veneers looking their best. Schedule a consultation with Drs. Robertson and Orchard today!

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