The teeth may seem inconsequential and neglected when they are in good shape, but when something goes wrong with the teeth, that are when we realise that it forms a huge part of our confidence in our looks.
Your smile is one of your first selling points, our first impression when you meet people whether at work or socially. First impressions matter, and so it is understandable that when the smile is crooked, or when teeth are missing and damaged, we look for repair options.
Before dental veneers, there were crowns, tooth fillers and other fake teeth replacement options. Dental veneers are the most sustainable repair option for teeth that do not look good when the mouth is opened.
Dental veneers are an alternative tooth replacement option, usually made out of medical grade porcelain or ceramic and fixed to the front of the teeth (different than zirconia veneers). They are used to correct flaws in the appearance of the tooth. These flaws could be small holes on the surface of the tooth, or total replacement of a removed or missing tooth. Veneers are an alternative to tooth filling, and are made to be as strong and durable as the original tooth.
What about dental veneers?
Veneers, contrary to popular opinion, are not a new invention. The dental veneer has been around since their invention in the 1920s. The veneer was invented by Dr. Charles Pincus, a dentist from California who was the dentist to the stars. His invention made the celebrities picture-ready for the stage with a blinding smile: giving rise to the renowned “Hollywood smile”. Most of the veneers were temporary, adhered to the teeth with special glue that could be removed after performances. We can also now say that someone has a dental veneers smile.
It was in the 1930s that dental veneers became more universally available-even though they were quite noticeably fake. By the 1950s, a more effective bonding method called light teeth etching with a mild acid was invented by Dr. Michael Bunocore. Dr. Michael’s invention changed the way people accepted and used veneers. His work and that of Dr. Pincus paved the way for the modern, permanent bonding technique devised by Calamia and Simonsen in 1982.
Today, veneers are made to blend perfectly with the teeth, looking as natural as possible and can even be tinted to match the patient’s natural teeth colour. With veneers that can last between 10-30 years, having the perfect smile is not just safer, it is very easy too.
FACTORS TO CONSIDER BEFORE GETTING VENEERS
The cost of veneers: Some veneers are more expensive than others. This needs to be taken into consideration while choosing the best method or technique.
The dentist and the country of its dental clinic: The dentist is a very important part of the procedure, and it is best if his qualifications are known and vetted-preferably with references to other patients worked on in the past. Inexperienced dentists might come cheaper, but they could cause more damage in the long run. A cosmetic dentist is the best person for the job.
The durability: some veneers last longer than others. Durability also factors in the patient’s oral habits (for example, if they have bruxism that is habitual teeth grinding) which might compromise the durability of the veneers. Some veneers work better for bruxists than others.
- Habitual teeth grinding, called bruxism, can cause veneers to fall off or crack.
- The enamel removal done before veneer installation is permanent, and so if the installed veneers wear off or fall out, new ones will need to be installed.
- Up to 30% of the teeth could be shaved off for the procedure, further exposing the pulp and dentine and making the teeth susceptible to decay and damage.
What are the factors Which Affect The Cost of veneers
There are several factors that affect the final price of veneers:
Your Dentist – There’s not a uniform charge for veneers, so things like the experience and reputation of your dentist plays a major role for the final cost
Specialty of your dentist – while it is true that most dentists can perform the procedure, some dentists who specialise in cosmetic procedures. If you opt for a cosmetic dentist, you can expect to pay premium prices
Preparatory Work – While some people can have the treatment straight away, many will need some initial work to prepare the mouth for the veneer. The extent of work required will determine how much additional cost is involved, so this will vary from patient to patient
The Laboratory – the skill and experience of the laboratory or ceramist that is fabricating the veneers will play a big role in the final price. Veneers from a highly skilled laboratory or ceramist will mean a higher cost.
Location – where you get your veneers will affect the price, as larger metropolitan areas will usually mean higher prices when compared to smaller towns. Please also check the huge prices differences below from one country to another.
PROCESS OF INSTALLING VENEERS
The amount of time veneer installation will take depends on the type of restoration the patient needs, the type of veneer chosen, and the method.
The normal procedure for getting veneers is as follows:
- The enamel of the patient is thinned down, with the depth of thinning depending on what type of veneer to be used.
- A mould of the patient’s teeth is taken. This mould is conventionally taken with wax or soft putty, which the patient bites into. It can also be taken with 3D imaging.
- A dental lab creates a projection of what the teeth would look like after installation of the veneers, using the mould as reference.
- A technician creates the veneers suing this mould. This process might take up to two weeks, and so the patient might be given temporary veneers to protect the exposed enamel.
- The veneers can be installed after they have been created and painted to match the shade of the patient’s teeth. They must be double-checked by the dentist to make sure that they fit in the patient’s mouth.
- Pre-installation, the teeth are etched with acid gel adhesive, while the veneers are coated with dental cement for proper affixing.
USES OF DENTAL VENEERS
- They can be used to cover a damaged tooth, protecting it and strengthening it so it does not break further.
- Veneers can be used to widen or lengthen teeth that are too small and have spaces, or have edges that have worn away.
- Crooked teeth can be covered with veneers to give a straightened and uniform appearance
- It is a way to permanently whiten teeth that have been yellowed by age, medicine or time.
- Getting veneers can give a much-needed boost of confidence to people who have had to live with crooked, uneven and broken dentition. It gives a great lift to the appearance.
MATERIALS FOR DENTAL VENEERS
As at 2012, dental veneers are classified according to four criteria.
They are classified according to the labial surface area, interproximal preparations, methods of production and materials used to formulate the veneers.
Of all these, the material used to make veneers are the most important decision to make, and the one in which the patient’s input is most welcome. Materials can be made using one of the several veneer technologies available, but which one the patient and their dentist chooses should be weighed carefully to give the patient the best results.
- Pressed ceramics are thick and strong materials usually found in conventional porcelain veneers.
- Lithium disilicate is light but strong, and can withstand the pressure of teeth grinding. This makes it the best material to use for patients who have bruxism.
- Stacked ceramic give the technician more flexibility in producing veneers that are more precisely tailored to the specific needs of the patient.
DENTAL VENEER TECHNOLOGY AND HOW TO CHOSE YOUR TYPES AND BRANDS
EMAX CROWNS AND VENEERS
E.MAX® is a brand name veneer technology, with the material for the veneers made out of the glass ceramic material lithium disilicate. EMAX veneers are gaining popularity for its glassy, delicate appearance that serves to complement its tough durability. Because it is so light and glassy, it blends perfectly and naturally with the teeth and does not look falsely white like most veneers do.
Advantages of Emax veneers
- EMAX veneers last longer than most other veneers and crowns.
- Fracture resistance of lithium disilicate is three times more than that of dental ceramics. This gives the veneers a longer usage time because they will not crack or damage easily.
- Blends naturally with the existing teeth, giving a more aesthetically pleasant look.
- Lightweight and delicate appearance makes it life-like.
- No metal alloys at the edges, so there is no chance it looks fake as the metal greys with age.
Disadvantages of Emax veneers
Even though EMAX veneers are long lasting, if finished roughly by a less-than attentive technician or manufacturer, they can wear away with very unattractive results.
Lumineers, produced exclusively by the DenMat Lab, are porcelain veneers, but they are thinner and more transparent than the conventional veneers. They are created to fit over the teeth, and not to replace removed enamel. In this way, you could say that they are a prosthetic as opposed to a replacement.
Before considering lumineers vs EMAX, one should go over the options with the qualified dentist so as to make an informed decision. This means that consideration of the patient’s age, medical history of oral health, budget, and extent of damage have to be put into consideration.
Advantages of Lumineers veneers
- Lumineers can be fixed without the need for shaving down the enamel of the teeth.
- The porcelain material is very similar to real teeth, so the prosthetic looks real.
- Because there is little to no enamel shaving, the risk of injuring the dentine or pulp is reduced.
- There is no side effect of teeth sensitivity, as it just alters the appearance of the teeth and augments it instead of replacing the surface.
- They are quite durable and can last up to 20 years.
Disadvantages of Lumineers veneers
- They fit over the teeth and are thinner, so teeth discolouration could show through the veneers.
- Because there is no shaving down the teeth, they might look bigger and thicker and may not line up evenly with the gums.
- Lumineers can cause inflammation of the gums and gingivitis-especially when not correctly placed or maintained. People who do not maintain their lumineers well are at risk of developing oral health problems.
CEREC TECHNOLOGY FOR DENTAL VENEERS
CEREC® (Chairside Economical Restoration of Esthetic Ceramics) technology was invented by Dr. Werner Moermann and is gaining popularity for their fast and efficient method.
In the CEREC veneers method used in Portugal for instance, a picture of the teeth is taken using a visible light camera instead of a mould like other methods use. The 3D picture of the tooth affected is designed and then carved out of ceramic using CAD/CAM computerised milling, which creates the tooth in the exact proportions of the right one.
After the veneer has been created, it can then be bonded on to the teeth.
The entire process takes less than one hour, and does not need external influence as the dentist can undertake the entire process himself.
Advantages of Cerec veneers
- 3D technology gives a better and more accurate picture of the tooth shape than a mould or impression.
- The dentist is involved in all the stages, making errors by external technicians impossible.
- The process is fast, taking less than one hour to complete.
- It is a one-appointment process; the patient does not need temporary filling or another appointment to complete the process.
Disadvantages of Cerec veneers
- The CEREC veneers are only suited for one or two fittings at a time. When more than a few teeth need veneers, CEREC is too complex and expensive to be the viable option.
- The procedure is expensive
- The complexity of the steps involved and the fact that some dentists are not specialised technicians could affect the quality of the veneers produced.
- They are not more durable or stronger than other veneers like EMAX or lumineers; they are only faster to produce.
CONTRAINDICATIONS AND PRECAUTIONS FOR USING DENTAL VENEERS
Because of their permanent teeth-fixing abilities and the ease of covering up blemishes with veneers, people have resorted to using it for even the most minor abnormalities. It should not be so. Veneers are only a last option with teeth that have been badly damaged or broken.
Veneers are contraindicated in the following:
- Young children who have not grown their permanent teeth. When milk teeth are damaged, they will still fall off to give room for permanent teeth to grow in and so they don’t need a permanent replacement that could hinder the growth of healthier teeth.
- Adolescents and young people have relatively strong and healthy teeth, and bar an actual tooth replacement, they do not require veneers. Instead, yellowed teeth can be whitened and cleaned.
- Patients with tooth decay, gum disease or root canal infections do not qualify for veneers until the infection is treated. It is only then that the cosmetic appearance of the teeth can be restored.
About Costs and dental charges, the NHS case for reimbursement of veneers
Like the French Sécurité Sociale, like the Belgium Social Security and other Medicare State Agencies, a veneer belong to cosmetic dendistry and therefore cannot be reimbursed. The NHS is not that radical and explains that "Veneers are generally only available privately unless you can show a clinical need for them.". So there might be some situations where it is necessary to have veneers and the patient has to proove it.
Know has the EU "hub" of dentistry with more than 400 clinics, Hungary with its capital Budapest and its East Region makes no exception for its competitive costs of dentistry in cosmetic dentistry. The average price of Veneers in Hungary starts around 398 €.
Emax veneers starting price is 370 €.
Cerec veneers starting price in Budapest is 380 €.
Well know for its tourism and often combined with medical tourism, Spain might be an option for those who needs to have veneers. With prices in the EU average, but with huge differences from one location to another, the Emax starting price for a veneer in 399 €.
Probably the most trendy dental tourism country nowadays, Portugal has a competitive advantage with costs of veneers in the Spanish average but without discrepancies from one location to another. While in Spain in a little town a veneer may cost 300 € in average it can be multiplied by 3 when around some costs like Marbella. This does not happen is Porto nor Lisbon with an everage price for a Cerec starting price of 400 €.
Like Spain, Thailand has huge discrepancies in terms of dental costs in general and especially in terms of veneers as this dental treatment is highly competitive (you generally don't need to travel twice unless gum treatment is required).
The Cerec Veneer starting price is 15000 BAHT while the porcelain veneer starting price average is 13000 BAHT.
Known as The "hub" for dentistry in the world, even larger than Budapest in Hungary, Mexico, especially Tijuana, has strong competitive advantages in terms of dental costs and veneers make no exception.
Often forgotten, Turkey, mainly for Europeans and People from the Middle-East has a strong competitive advantage in terms of veneers costs and services. It has huge discrepancies from one dental clinic to another but the average starting price for a basic home made veneer can be found at 281 € while the Lumineers is at 150 € and the standard porcelain veneer at 200 €.
With a currency rate divided by two in 216-217 and a general low cost of life, Egypt is a competitive country for dental treatments and you can find in average the first veneers for only 131 USD and for porcelain veneers a starting price at 189 USD.
Totally forgotten and not from those that when eventually made searches or combined their vacation with cosmetic dentistry, Greece is an ideal place for Veneers. With an average price in the average of Hungary, with a fast dental practice, it is one of the best place for having veneers while combining your vacation (veneers donnot take so much time and one can enjoy the rest of the day).
Last update 3rd of November 2018