Are you thinking about asking your dentist for sectional veneers to restore your teeth? Some skilled cosmetic dentists use this innovative treatment. But how do you know if it’s right for you? And should you insist that your dentist uses it?
Sectional Veneers vs. Porcelain Veneers
A porcelain veneer is a thin shell of porcelain that covers the entire front surface of a tooth. Porcelain is also used to make a sectional veneer, but it only covers the portion of a tooth that needs restoring—not the entire front surface.
When Are They Used?
Some cosmetic dentists use sectional veneers to correct small or minor issues on teeth, including:
- Small gaps
- Small chips
- Minor cracks or fractures
Sectional veneers preserve more of your natural tooth structure and require very minimal preparation of a tooth. If there is significant damage to a tooth, an entire porcelain veneer might be required.
Which Veneers Should You Request?
Before you ask your dentist for any cosmetic treatment, you should wait until you receive a diagnosis and explanation of your treatment options. Several factors affect whether or not your dentist will recommend sectional veneers or porcelain veneers.
1. The Condition of Your Teeth
The condition of your teeth and gums, the extent of damage to them, and the goals you want to achieve for your smile all affect treatment recommendations. Your dentist will examine and x-ray your teeth to make a thorough evaluation of the external and internal condition of your teeth. He or she will let you know if porcelain veneers—or sectional veneers—are an option.
2. Your Dentist’s Experience and Preference
Only highly skilled cosmetic dentists can produce beautiful results with porcelain veneers. And experienced cosmetic dentists work with private laboratories and skilled ceramists who understand how to manipulate porcelain to give you lifelike results. Many cosmetic dentists don’t offer sectional veneers at all. Their experience, preferences, and each patient case affect which treatment they recommend. Experienced cosmetic dentists often prefer cosmetic resin as the first choice in concealing minor flaws in teeth. And they achieve beautiful, long-lasting results.
3. Your Risks
So although you can ask a dentist for any treatment, you should wait until you understand the condition of your teeth and the results you can expect from your treatment options. If you’re determined to receive a certain type or brand of veneers, only receive them from a dentist who regularly uses them. Otherwise, you might be dissatisfied with the results.
What Matters Most
If you want excellent results and a natural-looking smile, search for accredited cosmetic dentists in your area. Accreditation requires a dentist to pass oral and written exams and submit several cosmetic cases of varying complexity. Accredited dentists have proven their ability to give you gorgeous results. And after all, isn’t a gorgeous smile what you want?
Accredited cosmetic dentist Dr. Michael Szarek of Lowell, MA, sponsors this blog. Visit Dr. Szarek’s smile gallery to see examples of his artwork.
Before-and-after porcelain veneers photos of one of Dr. Szarek’s patients.