What are porcelain veneers?

Porcelain veneers are one of the common solutions in cosmetic dentistry. Veneers are thin shells made of medical-grade ceramic. The shells are bonded to the fronts of teeth- sometimes one tooth, sometimes each tooth- to correct dental flaws. Dentists have methods and resources to correct most dental deficiencies, and veneers allow them to aesthetically perfect those corrections.

Getting veneers is a non-invasive procedure, which makes it a popular choice amongst patients all over the world. Recently, we’ve watched a craze evolve around perfectly white teeth and a perfect smile. A healthy smile is certainly an ingredient to the recipe for self-confidence and happiness.

Veneers, however, are not as new to the world as the craze is to the public. In fact, veneers have been around for a while- you might be surprised to learn about how they emerged and evolved in cosmetic dentistry.

The history of veneers

Porcelain veneers aren’t as new as you might think. Celebrities made famous their smile perfection abilities in recent years and popularity ensued, but the cosmetic procedure has been around since the 1920s!

That’s right, veneers have been in cosmetic dentistry for nearly a century.

In the late 1920s, a dentist from California invented the now famous smile. Dr. Charles Pincus was a dentist whose patients were mostly Hollywood celebrities. As teeth have always made an impact on a person’s smile, look and confidence, Pincus searched for a way to give celebrities a perfect smile for the cinema, and found one through acrylic material that attached to the fronts of teeth. Actors used a special adhesive to achieve the temporarily perfect smile for their move scenes.

Progression was slow through the 1930s and 1940s, but the positive reception to the use of veneers in Hollywood was vast. Dentists realized that many people- not just actors- could benefit from veneers. Many of their patients lost teeth to disease and fake teeth were usually noticeable.

At this time, the veneers were made from porcelain or composites, but the problem was in the bonding agent. Dentists were struggling to find a bonding process that was strong enough to hold the porcelain or composite for more than the length or filming a scene.

By the 1950s, Dr. Michael Bunocore discovered that light teeth etching with a mild acidic solution made a stronger bonding surface for sealants and restorations.

In 1982, J.R. Calamia and R.J. Simonsen combined the research and techniques of Pincus and Buonocore and found a way to make the bonding surface strong enough to permanently attach the porcelain to the enamel. Once the process was modernized, the procedure grew more affordable and with affordability, it became readily accessible to many.

Today, dental veneers are so advanced, it’s hard to tell that they’re fake. They blend in perfectly with enamel and can be me made to match the patient’s natural tooth color.

With good oral hygiene and care, patients rely on veneers lasting from 10 to 30 years- an immense improvement from their beginnings as temporary teeth on set.

Although veneers are a common way to get a perfect smile, they’re used for practical purposes, too. Dentists today use veneers for teeth for same-day restorations or to fill in gaps of missing teeth.

Veneers have come a long way over the last century and especially in the last few decades. If you are curious about exploring cosmetic dentistry to enhance or correct your smile, come into Doral Sedation Dentistry. Our friendly staff will help you find the best approach to your brightest smile yet.