How to Prepare Your Teeth for Veneers



Veneers done by Dr. Carol Ford

Dental veneers are thin pieces of porcelain that are adhered by a cosmetic dentist to one’s natural teeth. They are used to recreate the natural look of teeth, while also providing strength and resilience comparable to natural tooth enamel. They are a popular choice of treatment for making minor improvements to a tooth’s color, shape or size.

Your dentist will help you prepare for the veneer procedure by assessing your oral health and ensuring you are a candidate for this type of restoration. From a cosmetic standpoint, one of the most important ways that patients can prepare for their veneers is to consider how the color of their natural teeth will compare to that of the veneers. If the motivation for having veneers applied is to produce a brighter, natural-looking smile, minimizing the shade difference between the teeth with veneers and all other teeth, especially those that show when we smile or open our mouth, is crucial.

While it is possible to whiten the natural teeth surrounding a veneer after the fact, there are two advantages to whitening your teeth as part of your preparation for dental veneers. First, color-matching is part of the veneer application process, so if your natural teeth are already the shade you desire, your dentist will simply match the shade of your veneer to them. Also, while veneers are permanently attached to the front surface of your teeth, they are typically thin enough that if you experience significant yellowing of the tooth surface underneath, the tooth may end up looking darker than your natural teeth. By whitening all of your teeth before the veneer is applied, your dentist will be able to create a veneer with greater translucency, which is desirable because it creates a more natural appearance.

“Veneers are rarely applied to all the teeth in one’s mouth,” says Dr. Carol Ford, a Phoenix-based cosmetic dentist. “So it’s important to discuss with your dentist how your veneers will coexist with your natural teeth. Whitening your teeth before veneers are applied can ensure that your entire smile will look natural and attractive!”

Speak Your Mind