Cosmetic Dentistry has come a long way – even in the last ten years. These days, just about anyone can achieve a “Hollywood smile” with the placement of veneers or Lumineers, a name-brand of veneers. Made of a thin and quite natural-looking material, veneers are essentially tiny, porcelain “shells” that are bonded or glued to the top of the teeth to provide a more attractive appearance.In addition to helping you achieve the perfect smile, veneers can help makeover a variety of dental dilemmas, including stains, discoloration, gaps, cracked teeth, chipped teeth and even misshapen teeth.
How Do Lumineers Differ from Traditional Veneers?
Many people today take advantage of the advancements in cosmetic dentistry by choosing to have veneers placed on their teeth in order to mask dental issues such as cracked and chipped teeth as well as stains and gaps. As the field becomes aligned with this technological progress, new and improved products are available to those looking to achieve that winning smile. One such result in the advance in dentistry is the Lumineer. Like the traditional veneer, Lumineers are porcelain-based and durable, will not discolor over time, and appear to be a natural part of the tooth. Even though both traditional veneers and Lumineers are similar in price, there are important differences between the two, including:
Because of the thickness of traditional veneers, the application process more often than not requires the grinding down of the tooth’s enamel, resulting in the veneer being bonded to a radically reshaped tooth. In order to replicate the natural look of the tooth and provide a good fit for the veneer, dentists usually have to remove 3 to 5 mm from the exterior of the tooth. This process does not occur with the ultra-thin Lumineers. At approximately 0.2 mm in thickness, Lumineers fit snugly over any size of tooth while retaining the durability and strength of the traditional veneer. Their translucence blends easily with the existing tooth to recreate that much-sought-after natural look, without the intrusive process of enamel removal.
This process of grinding down the tooth and removing the enamel is problematic in another sense: its permanence. Once this procedure is done, it cannot be reversed. That means if something happens to the veneer through any type of trauma or if it needs to be taken off for any reason, the natural protection of the tooth afforded by the enamel is gone forever. Conversely, if the Lumineers are removed, the tooth is still protected by its natural bulwark, the enamel.
Even though a trip to the dentist is usually known as having some level of discomfort involved, the fact of the matter is that the process of placing Lumineers on your teeth is practically pain-free. As mentioned above, there is no reconstruction of the tooth to be done and, therefore, no shots and no pain, unlike the traditional veneer placement. Post-placement, the thinness of the Lumineers offers the patient no additional sensitivity or discomfort as do the bulkier traditional veneers.
How Veneers and Lumineers are Similar
Lumineers and traditional veneers share many similarities, including that they are both:
- Made from a thin layer of porcelain
- Can provide a whiter, brighter and more youthful smile
- Can improve the appearance of crooked, misaligned teeth
- Can cover up a cracked or chipped tooth
- Can remove gaps between teeth
- Are comfortable and have a natural appearance
- Are strong, durable and easy to maintain
- Will not stain or change color with time
- Are custom-made to create a seamless smile
- Are offered at a similar price point
Are Lumineers Right For You?
Take a moment to evaluate your teeth and, more importantly, how satisfied you are with your smile. If you aren’t completely happy with your smile, know that with the placement of either veneers or Lumineers can help you achieve the perfect smile you’ve always dreamed of! Westend Dental is a Certified Lumineers Dentist and would be more than happy to answer any questions you might have about perfecting your smile.