Veneers are used in cosmetic dentistry to cover chips and discolored teeth. They can also be used to make a tooth longer or alter its shape. You might even get veneers to close a gap in your front teeth. Veneers can last for several years if you practice good oral hygiene. You'll want to get the longest life from your veneers and keep them looking their best so they blend in with your natural teeth. Here are some ways to help do this.

Protect The Health Of Your Gums

Gum health is important when it comes to the appearance of your veneers. One problem that can develop from poor oral hygiene is gum disease. When you have gum disease, your gums can pull away from your teeth and recede. When that happens, the top of the veneers may become noticeable and no longer blend in. You can maintain healthy gums by brushing and flossing daily. You'll also want to avoid brushing with a stiff brush that causes damage to your gums. Regular dental cleanings are important, too, as these scrape away plaque and tartar that cause gum inflammation.

Prevent Dental Cavities

Veneers are very thin layers of porcelain that adhere to the front of your teeth. They don't enclose your entire tooth, so your tooth is still susceptible to decay. If you get a cavity on the back of your tooth or near the gum, then you may lose the veneer if your tooth needs a crown or large filling. Avoid this problem by continuing to brush and floss and use products recommended by your dentist that include fluoride. By keeping your teeth healthy and free from cavities, you can prolong the life of your veneers.

Avoid Stains Around The Veneers

Porcelain resists stains, so discoloration isn't usually a problem for the veneer itself. However, the dental cement used to attach the veneer to your tooth can be discolored by food and smoking. When that happens, the outline of the veneer becomes visible, and that detracts from the appearance of the dental work. If you smoke, consider stopping if you have veneers put on so you reduce the risk of staining. Also, be cautious with foods such as tea, coffee, and berries, that can cause stains. Brush soon after consuming them so stains can't accumulate on the cement material. Be sure to use a brush with soft bristles so you don't scratch the veneers and create crevices for bacteria to thrive.

If you practice good oral hygiene now with regular brushing, flossing, and dental visits, then taking care of veneers will be automatic and not any additional effort. However, if you often get lax with your dental habits, then you'll want to improve your oral hygiene once you get veneers so they look natural for many years and give you good value for the investment in your smile. To learn more, talk to a dentist like those represented at