What Makes a Veneer Choice Successful?

Cosmetic DentistryWhat’s the difference between a veneer that lights up a bright, clean smile and a veneer that has the look of a kitchen appliance? Opacity—how light reflects off the surface. Translucency—how much light passes through the veneer—needs to be balanced with opacity. Real teeth have a certain amount of translucency. A white refrigerator has high opacity. An excellent veneer has a careful balance of enough opacity to look bright, clean and white, mixed with some translucency to mimic a real tooth’s surface.

There are two ways to create the balance—the type of veneer and the type of adhesive used to attach the veneer onto the teeth.

“Surface texture is a big part of translucency,” says Dr. Carol Ford from her Cosmetic Dentistry office in Phoenix. “Porcelain veneers have a smooth surface and higher opacity to prevent staining, so we count on a thin veneer and a careful bonding process for translucency that gives you the right look,” she explains.

Porcelain veneers are strong and offer the benefit of looking clean and white as well as re-shaping teeth that have gaps or aren’t straight.

In the article, “Porcelain Veneers—Smile Makeover,” the website AboutCosmeticDentistry says, “They are the cure for teeth that are severely discolored, chipped, have small holes or pits, misshapen or crooked, or for the correction of unwanted or uneven spaces. Unlike crowns, veneers won’t require the dentist to remove much of the tooth itself in most cases.” The thinness of the veneer allows the necessary translucency blended with the ability to solve the most common smile problems.

The adhesive that attaches the veneers to the teeth can also make a difference to the color and opacity of the veneer. Adhesives come in different colors, and some adhesives can blend with the veneer’s color to help achieve the right balance of opacity and translucency, according to the American Dental Association’s Product Guide.

“The best way to get the results you want is to talk to your dentist and discuss the results you want, “ says Dr. Ford. “So much is available today, but unless you talk to your dentist, we don’t know what your expectations for a beautiful smile are,” she adds.


  1. Hello, do you also specialize in Braces ?

    • Dr. Carol Ford says

      No I don’t specialize in braces and that is often the better choice to correct crooked teeth. But if your teeth are misshaped, full of old fillings, discolored, and only slightly out of alignment, veneers are a great solution. It’s fast easy and almost instant results. If your teeth are perfect and only misaligned, then braces are always the best option. It could mean no veneers necessary or only one or two as opposed to 6, 8 or 10 to straighten things out. I always would shoot for the most conservative route when it comes to tooth destruction, depending on the patients end goal.

      I completely recommend Dr. Paul Serrano for braces or Invisalign. skorthodontics.com

      I would be happy to see you for a personalized complimentary consultation.

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