Veneers – Lake Forest, CA


Unsatisfied with how your teeth look? Teeth that are chipped, stained or misshapen can take away from an otherwise beautiful smile. Veneers can rejuvenate your lackluster teeth & transform your smile.

Veneers are the most conservative restorations we offer. They consist of a thin strip of porcelain that covers the front side of a tooth. We use porcelain because we can change the color to closely match your natural teeth. Unlike crowns, which cover the entirety of a tooth, veneers require less enamel removal, so most of your original tooth structure stays intact. Rather than replacing your whole tooth, a veneer gives your tooth a “new face.” Because they are minimally invasive, dental veneers are essential tools of cosmetic dentistry.

Getting a veneer requires at least two appointments. At the first appointment, the dentist prepares your tooth so a veneer can be placed. A couple weeks later, they will permanently attach the veneer to your tooth.

A dental veneer procedure begins with the dentist removing a very small amount of your front tooth enamel (usually less than one millimeter). Depending on how much enamel needs to be removed, this process may not require local anesthesia. Veneers bond more easily with the outer tooth structure than the inner tooth structure, so the dentist wants to remove as little as possible. They use a rotating device known as a dental bur to gently shave down some of the tooth’s surface.

After the tooth is shaved down, we need to take an impression (or mold) of your teeth. We send this impression to a lab so they can make a veneer that comfortably fits your smile. To expose more of your tooth for the impression, the dentist uses a small retraction cord to move the gums away from it. This is temporary; your gum line returns to its original position once the impression is complete. The final step is to bite into a tray filled with paste to a make a mold of your teeth. This takes a few minutes to set, so be patient!

When the mold is ready, we make any final adjustments & send it to a dental lab. It takes a couple weeks to receive your permanent veneer from the lab. In the meantime, you may receive a temporary veneer to cover the prepared tooth. This is not necessary in all cases. Temporaries are only needed if the dentist must remove a large amount of enamel, which can make your tooth more sensitive or prone to damage.

At your last appointment, we attach your personalized veneer. The dentist may need to make adjustments so the veneer looks good & feels right. If you have any concerns about the look & feel of your smile at this stage in the process, please feel free to tell us! We want to make sure you are satisfied with the result.

Once any last-minute trimming & refitting is finished, the dentist coats your tooth with bonding cement & attaches the veneer to your tooth. Then they use a special blue light to harden the cement & secure the veneer. After one final check to make sure the fit is still snug & comfy, you’re good to go!

You will be given special instructions on how to care for your veneer, including a list of foods to avoid. You may also need a night guard if your grind your teeth at night. Carefully following any directions or warnings will ensure the longest lifespan for your veneer, which can last over ten years.

Lumineers®

Want to improve the look of your smile with less hassle? Lumineers® are the no-prep solution for your cosmetic dentistry needs! Like traditional veneers, Lumineers® attach to the front of your teeth, discretely giving your smile a brand new look. Without the need for any shots or drilling, these ultra thin veneers are minimally invasive.

Though regular veneers are known for requiring less preparation & tooth removal than dental crowns, they still involve some level of dental intrusion. By contrast, Lumineers® don’t require any tooth removal at all. Because they are made of a thinner, more durable kind of porcelain, they can slide over your original tooth without adding too much extra bulk.

Ordinary veneers have a minimum thickness of 0.5mm while Lumineers® can be as thin as 0.2­–0.3mm. The difference may seem insignificant, but it actually makes a huge difference when it comes to the look of your teeth. Even just a few too many millimeters added to your teeth can create an awkward, artificial looking smile. This is why dentists have to shave down a tooth before it can get a veneer. Because they are smaller than regular veneers, Lumineers® reduce or eliminate the likelihood of an unnatural look.

In addition to a more natural look, one of the most attractive benefits of Lumineers® is that there is need for local anesthesia during your procedure! Since you do not any tooth structure removed, you can rest easy & do not need to worry about pain or shots. This is a rare benefit that is not found in many restorative or cosmetic dental services. If you are averse to needles or simply have dental anxiety, Lumineers® are a great way to upgrade your smile without fear.

Another advantage of Lumineers® is that you won’t need to wear temporary veneers while you wait for your permanent veneers to be milled by the dental lab. After an initial old-fashioned veneer appointment, you need to wear temporaries until your next appointment in order to protect your now-sensitive tooth & to cover up its misshapen appearance. These temporaries are not custom-made by a dental lab & may not blend well with your smile. As a result, many patients are dissatisfied with the look & feel of temporary veneers.

Your first Lumineers® appointment is faster, simpler & will not leave you with unsightly teeth & temporaries. All we need is a dental impression to send to a Lumineers® lab. When your ultra thin veneer is ready a couple weeks later, we will have you come back to get it attached.

Lumineers® attach more strongly to your teeth than ordinary veneers. This is because they don’t require any tooth trimming. When a dentist removes enamel to attach veneers, there is a risk of exposing dentin, the inner structure of the tooth. Veneers do not bond nearly as well to dentin as they do to enamel. Since you do not have to worry about exposed dentin with Lumineers®, you can be sure that your restoration is secure.

Lumineers® are very durable, but you still need to take good care of them if you want them to last. We can advise you about what foods you should avoid. You also need to maintain a high level of oral hygiene, including brushing twice a day, flossing at least once a day & coming to us for your regularly scheduled teeth cleanings. With proper care, your Lumineers® can last well over ten years.