Providing Better Smiles to Calgary & nearby areas of Alberta

Veneers are, without a doubt, modern dentistry’s best way to replicate nature. That is always the goal of cosmetic dentistry- to replicate nature, not try to improve upon it. Porcelain veneers are not the only option for changing one’s smile but are commonly used when a patient wants to gain a lot of control of their smile (change color, size, shape, etc).

The advantages to porcelain veneers are:

  • Aesthetics:
    • Porcelain is our most ‘natural’ looking enamel replacement material because it replicates many of the same properties as enamel. For example, enamel has a property called translucency (where light can enter and be reflected back out). Porcelain has that same characteristic and can be varied by the master ceramist to blend with the surrounding teeth.
  • Durability:
    • Porcelain veneers are bonded to the underlying tooth structure. Because of this, there is a chemical adhesion to the tooth and the veneer on a microscopic level.
  • Lack of staining:
    • Unlike bonding or natural teeth, porcelain veneers do not really stain because of the material (essentially a glass ceramic). Additionally, porcelain veneers are glazed in an oven as the final process in their fabrication so this prevents (or minimizes) staining.
  • Strength:
    • Besides using metal in your mouth, porcelain systems today are the strongest materials we have.

Nothing in dentistry is perfect though. There are some disadvantages associated with porcelain veneers:

  • Cost:
    • Porcelain veneers are expensive. Veneers range in quality across the board, just like most products we buy. For example, just like in automobiles, you may want to buy a sub-compact car or a high-end luxury sedan. Veneers can range from is $700 – $2000 per tooth. This does not mean that you can’t get quality at $700 nor does it guarantee a $2000 veneer is going to be perfect.
  • Invasive:
    • Porcelain veneers are typically more invasive to the enamel than other options (for example, tooth bonding is less invasive.) Even at a minimal thickness of 0.3mm, without a little tooth reduction, the tooth could appear bulky. There are situations, though, where the tooth does not require any reduction (i.e. drilling).
  • Not stronger than enamel:
    • It’s a myth that porcelain is good for people who have chipped or broken their teeth through grinding (or chewing ice, etc). Porcelain is not stronger than enamel. So basically anything that could chip or break a natural tooth will do the same to porcelain. In many instances, we mandate a night-guard in our cases to ensure protection on your investment.

Porcelain veneers can be a great investment, if they are the right option for you. Contact our office for a free consultation and find out if porcelain veneers are right for you!

Jennifer Silver Cosmetic Dentist

Dr. Jennifer Silver is a highly accomplished dental surgeon with a Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from the University of Melbourne, Australia. Her educational accomplishments include deans honours list, an oral surgery award and best research project. Prior to this degree, she graduated with honors from Dalhousie University’s Dental Hygiene Program and worked in this field for 10 years.

The areas of dentistry that holds special interest for Dr. Silver include oral medicine and whole-body dentistry. She currently devotes time and resources toward helping patients with TMJ pain and sleep apnea, while continuing to provide general dentistry as well. Future interests include devoting time to additional oral surgery training. Jen strives to treat her patients as if they were family. She strongly believes in a multi-disciplinary approach for patient care. She is part of a large network of specialists that she trusts and collaborates with when helping patients.