What Are Porcelain Veneers?

beautiful smile surpriseA veneer, in any sense, is a thin, often decorative piece of material that’s placed on top of a stronger, sturdier substance. Porcelain veneers, commonly referred to as dental porcelain laminates, are wafer-thin shells of lifelike dental porcelain that change the shape, size, and color of cosmetically-blemished teeth. While most cosmetic and other dentistry options are geared towards addressing a specific dental issue, porcelain veneers are recommended for a large and diverse variety of situations. Each veneer is hand-crafted by highly-skilled ceramists in a trusted, off-site dental laboratory, according to careful measurements of your mouth and teeth. Though dental veneers can be crafted from different materials, including composite resin, dental porcelain’s advanced aesthetic appeal and structural stability typically makes it the preferred material for dental veneers. 

What Veneers Fix

Because of their ability to conceal several teeth’s entire front surfaces at the same time, porcelain veneers can improve the appearance of smiles with several different cosmetic issues, including;
→     Dark, stubborn teeth stains that don’t respond to professional teeth whitening
→     Chipped or jagged tooth edges
→     Minor cracks that don’t expose the tooth’s inner chamber, or pulp
→     Excessive tooth wear
→     Slightly crooked teeth (unless orthodontic braces are required)
→     Conspicuous gaps between teeth, known as diastemas

Are Veneers Right for You?

Though they’re highly-versatile, dental porcelain laminates aren’t always the most beneficial option. If your smile’s issues can be resolved with a more conservative treatment, like teeth whitening, or if other dental conditions might interfere with their success, then you may not be a good candidate for porcelain veneers.

How’s Your Dental Health?

Tooth enamel describes the super-resilient, semi-translucent layer of mineral crystals that surrounds your teeth, protecting them from bacteria that lead to tooth decay. Before recommending porcelain veneers, which are bonded to the outer surfaces of your teeth, Dr. Allen will ensure that you possess enough enamel to support the veneers and still protect the healthy tooth structure underneath them. If your tooth enamel is too weak or thin—a frequent result of poor hygiene and a precursor to cavity development—then improved hygiene might strengthen it before porcelain veneers can be placed. Dr. Allen may recommend topical fluoride treatments and prescription mouthrinse strengthen your tooth enamel more quickly.


Jeffrey F. Allen, DDS, provides comfortable dental care to patients of all ages. Call our office today at (641) 628-1121 to schedule a checkup and cleaning, cosmetic consultation, or second-opinion visit. We are located on the west side of the historic town square in Pella, IA. Please see the map for directions.