Porcelain veneers can mask stained, gapped, and misshaped teeth to produce a more uniform and attractive smile. However, with time, veneers can become discolored, a process that can be accelerated with exposure to staining foods and drinks or poor oral hygiene practices.
At Artistic Expressions Dentistry in Philadelphia, PA, patients often ask us how to whiten porcelain veneers. Unfortunately, the veneers themselves can’t be whitened. Here, Dr. Bruce Wilderman discusses what we can do to brighten your teeth if you have had porcelain veneers placed, and how to prevent your veneers from becoming discolored.
Are Your Veneers Discolored?
If your veneers have started to look yellow, it may be time to replace them. When high-quality materials are used in the fabrication of porcelain veneers and patients practice proper aftercare, veneers can last 20 years or more. However, at some point, the veneers will need to be replaced. Veneers that have become stained and discolored indicate that it may be time for replacement.
The porcelain veneers replacement procedure is similar to the initial treatment process. The difference is that we will first need to remove your old veneers and any bonding residue that remains on the teeth. Then we will design your veneers, consulting with you to determine the shade of white that you desire. When your custom veneers are ready, we will bond them to the teeth, instantly brightening your smile.
Are Your Teeth Discolored?
If your teeth are discolored, there may be a noticeable difference in the shade of your natural teeth compared to the veneers. This may be especially obvious if you have new veneers placed.
Prior to having your custom veneers bonded to your teeth, consider having your surrounding teeth whitened at our Philadelphia practice to maintain an even and uniform appearance among all of the teeth.
How to Prevent Your Veneers from Getting Stained
Once your new veneers are in place, it is important to care for them so they last and look beautiful for as long as possible:
- Brush your teeth: Brush your teeth twice a day with a gentle, non-abrasive toothpaste and a soft-bristled brush.
- Floss your teeth: Floss your teeth at least once a day to prevent plaque build-up and discoloration between the teeth and along the gum line.
- Avoid foods and drinks that stain veneers: Veneers are stain-resistant, but with constant exposure to certain foods and drinks, they will eventually become discolored. Red wine and coffee are two notable drinks that stain the teeth. Limit your exposure to these drinks, and rinse your mouth with water soon after drinking these beverages to limit contact with the teeth. In addition, brush your teeth soon after consuming stain-causing foods and drinks.
Contact Our Practice
To find out if it is time to replace your porcelain veneers and restore a bright, white smile, contact Artistic Expressions Dentistry today. You can contact us online or call us in Philadelphia at (215) 340-1199. We can determine if your treatment plan should include professional teeth whitening or any of the other services offered at our practice.