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What Wichita, KS patients should know about treatment with porcelain veneers

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If you are looking for a convenient, effective, customized smile improvement treatment, porcelain veneers from Dr. David Koepsel of East Wichita Dentist may be the ideal answer.
In Wichita, KS and across the country, smiles are more important than ever. According to a survey by the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD), more than 99 percent of Americans consider an attractive smile an important social asset, and about three-quarters believe it is a career asset as well.

If you are looking for a convenient, effective, customized smile improvement treatment, porcelain veneers from Dr. David Koepsel of East Wichita Dentist may be the ideal answer. A veneer is a very thin layer of porcelain that covers the visible part of a tooth. It can change the size, shape, or color of a tooth, close wide spaces between teeth, and even improve the appearance of mild rotation.

Five things you should know before getting dental veneers


1. You can change your smile as much or as little as you like.

Maybe you just want that one odd shaped tooth to look like the rest. Maybe you want to dramatically change the color, size, and shape of all your visible teeth. Most likely, your cosmetic concerns are somewhere in between the extremes. Because veneers are completely customizable, they are a great option for any of these situations.

2. Every smile is different.

One of the best ways to define your cosmetic goals is by looking at smiles you like. This may be photos of celebrities, before and after pictures of dental patients, or even friends and family members. However, you need to be aware that a person’s lips, facial shape, and other factors impact the appearance of teeth. In other words, you don’t really want teeth identical to those of your favorite celebrity, because they would look very different with your face. Instead, try to define what qualities you like or dislike in a smile. Do you admire the soft and youthful appearance of longer, rounded teeth? Maybe you prefer mature and confident smiles, characterized by slightly flatter, shorter teeth?

3. Natural teeth aren’t as white as you think.

Even the youngest, healthiest teeth have a faintly dark cast. For a bright, natural looking smile, veneers should be bright, but not too bright. Alternately, ultra-white veneers can be made to look natural, but not as natural as slightly darker shades. Which is better? Only you can answer that question. It is your smile, and we are happy to design it according to your specifications.
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4. Preparation is minimal.

If you are imagining a painful and destructive process of grinding your teeth down, expect to be pleasantly surprised. The average dental veneer is about as thick as a fingernail or contact lens, and some are even thinner. At most, an equivalent amount of enamel needs to be shaved off. In some cases, it is less, because enamel is already quite thin due to wear and tear. We use conservative techniques to minimize preparation and preserve natural tooth structure as much as possible.

5. Good habits can extend the life of your veneers.
Image of a Happy couple smilling with showing thir brighter teeth

Dental porcelain does not decay, corrode, or even stain. Theoretically, they could last a lifetime. Yet, the average longevity of veneers is 10 to 15 years. Given the durability of porcelain, why do they fail? There are a few possible reasons, including:
  • Oral injury – A blow to the mouth, especially a direct impact to the veneer, can break lose the bonding cement. While some injuries are unavoidable, these types of accidents often happen while playing sports. Even if you are a casual weekend warrior, wear a sports mouth guard.
  • Cavities – A veneer only covers one surface of the tooth, leaving the rest exposed to plaque and bacteria. Without good hygiene and regular dental care, the underlying tooth can decay, eroding the surface that the veneer is attached to.
  • Bruxism – Clenching or grinding of teeth is a common habit. It usually happens in times of stress, or while sleeping. This extreme pressure and wear can damage veneers or natural teeth, as well as causing jaw pain and other problems. You may be able to avoid stress-induced clenching with effort, but nighttime bruxism is more challenging. Essentially, the only way to prevent it is a sleep mouth guard. This comfortable, custom-made oral appliance can protect your smile.

Are you a candidate for veneers?


Virtually any adult who is unhappy with the appearance of his or her smile is a potential candidate for veneers. However, oral health problems, such as gum disease, may need to be addressed before beginning cosmetic work. The best way to learn about your options is to visit us for a consultation. Just call East Wichita Dentist at (316) 686-7395 to schedule.

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