If you take good care of them, porcelain veneers can last 15 to 20 years or longer. But what if your veneers look dull or are stained? A skilled cosmetic dentist might be able to help.
Polishing Dull or Stained Porcelain Veneers
Porcelain veneers can be polished to a gloss similar to their original glaze. But your dentist must have the specialized tools, materials, and training to achieve the correct results. Otherwise, your veneers can be permanently damaged.
The right tools and materials
Polishing porcelain requires your dentist to use a combination of specific tools and materials that are designed for use on dental restorations. Some tools and materials might include:
- Polishing instruments for use on dental ceramics
- Ultra-fine polishing strips
- Ultra-fine polishing paste
Porcelain veneers require maintenance to keep their luster. If you schedule regular polishing visits with an experienced cosmetic dentist, it can prolong the life and beauty of your veneers. Any accumulation of stains or dullness on your veneers will be minor if they are properly maintained.
What can you do to keep your porcelain veneers bright?
Avoid abrasive toothpaste – This includes whitening toothpaste that is not designed for use on porcelain veneers. Whitening toothpastes are abrasive and can scratch the surface of porcelain veneers. The tiny scratches will attract stains.
Use a soft bristle toothbrush – Soft bristles will gently clean your porcelain veneers and prevent scratches on the surface.
Use alcohol-free mouthwash – Alcohol can soften and loosen the bonding of your porcelain veneers. Fluid or bacteria can leak behind the veneers and cause staining or decay.
A family or general dentist who does not regularly place porcelain veneers won’t have the proper tools and materials to enhance the appearance of your veneers. If your porcelain veneers need to be polished, seek the advice of a trained cosmetic dentist. He or she will examine your veneers and let you know the results you can expect.
This post is sponsored by Dr. Michael Szarek, a Lowell, MA dentist and accredited member of the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry.
Read our October 2019 post about what can cause porcelain veneers to lose their shine.