Is your smile as white as you’d like it to be? A white smile is one of the keys to success, self-confidence, and excellent appearance. When a person isn’t satisfied with his or her teeth, the whole image suffers.
Numerous ways exist to make teeth sparkle, especially if you can get a professional dentist’s opinion. Two rather common approaches are porcelain veneers and teeth whitening. Which one is good for you? We asked expert dentists from a San Diego dental clinic Bajars and Bajars to shed some light on the matter.
How Does It Work?
Before we dive into the pros and cons of each process, you need to understand how they work.
#1. Teeth Whitening
Teeth whitening is a non-invasive procedure, which can be performed during your routine dentist’s visit. Usually, a dentist applies hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide to your teeth, waits up to an hour, and then removes it. Such a procedure can deal with surface stains and some of the tooth discoloration.
Teeth whitening comes in many different options. If you don’t want to do it professionally, you could buy a teeth whitening kit at your nearest pharmacy. Off-the-shelf strips and trays usually have less whitening power than the professional whitening.
While teeth whitening is quick and offers immediate results, it doesn’t work for all teeth color problems and doesn’t offer a long-lasting effect.
#2. Porcelain Veneers
A porcelain veneer is essentially a frontal cap for your tooth. Instead of applying whitening agents or correcting the tooth itself, a dentist puts a porcelain shell over it to hide enamel problems and stains.
Another advantage of dental veneers is that they can help with such tooth problems as cracks, chips, and spacing. However, in order to attach a veneer, a dentist needs to reshape the tooth, thus making the process irreversible.
Applying porcelain veneers requires at least two visits to the dentist. Each one can last a few hours. It may take several weeks to manufacture a proper veneer.
Since a tooth needs to be reshaped, anesthesia is required to keep the process painless. Veneers can last for up to 10 – 15 years with proper care, helping you forget about tooth color problem completely.
Are You A Candidate?
How can you tell which one of the above procedures is right for you? Ideally, you should make a dentist’s appointment and get a professional opinion. However, some signs exist to help you choose one over the other.
#1. Teeth Whitening Candidate
If you are suffering from tooth surface stains caused by food, smoking, and coffee, teeth whitening may be the procedure for you. In case your teeth are healthy and don’t require any mechanical corrections, you can settle either for professional teeth whitening or strips and trays at home.
Anyone suffering from teeth discoloration can benefit from a teeth-whitening procedure to a certain degree.
#2. Porcelain Veneer Candidate
If teeth whitening doesn’t help you get rid of discoloration, you can consider attaching a veneer. The most common reasons to opt for veneers are chipped and cracked teeth, tooth gaps, asymmetrical teeth, and minor crookedness problems.
Another good reason to get veneers is high tooth sensitivity. If you are constantly suffering from sharp pangs when eating or brushing teeth, veneers can solve the problem.
Since applying a porcelain veneer is an irreversible procedure (i.e. once attached, you can’t go back to living without one), it’s highly important to consider alternatives before opting for it.
Both teeth whitening and porcelain veneers are an excellent way to get a perfect smile. While teeth whitening is faster, cheaper, and non-invasive, it may not always solve the problem. That’s when veneers come in. It’s important to consult your dentist about all the options available before making the final decision.