Have you noticed that your veneers have become somewhat discolored over time? Or maybe you have decided that you’d like to brighten them up a few shades? It may seem like a good idea to use a whitening kit in order to get them the color you’d like them to be. After all, they work for your enamel, so why would your veneers be any different? A cosmetic dentist in Fort Worth explains how porcelain veneers become discolored and what you can do to keep them white.
How Do Porcelain Veneers Become Stained?
While porcelain veneers are made out of a fairly stain-resistant material, they aren’t completely immune to discoloration. They do not become stained nearly as easy as your protective tooth enamel, but surface stains can still develop after they are exposed to highly pigmented foods and drinks over a long period of time. If you like to enjoy tea, red wine, coffee, or berries regularly, you may notice that this occurs throughout the years. Another way veneers can become stained is by tobacco products.
How Can You Whiten Veneers?
You may think that the easiest thing to do is head to your local drug store and purchase an over-the-counter teeth whitening kit in order to lift stains. Unfortunately, it isn’t that easy. The porcelain material that your veneers are made from does not respond well to this type of whitening. Instead, you should speak to your dentist. Even though veneers cannot necessarily be ‘whitened,’ your dentist may still be able to remove surface stains through professional cleanings. If your veneers have become very discolored throughout the years for one reason or another, your dentist may recommend that you have them replaced.
How Do You Prevent Veneers from Becoming Stained?
The best way to achieve white veneers is to prevent discoloration from happening in the first place. It is important that you maintain an excellent oral hygiene routine with regular brushing and flossing after you eat. Be careful when choosing your toothpaste because many ingredients in ones intended for whitening can be too abrasive for your veneers.
Another way to prevent staining is by avoiding highly pigmented foods. Curry, jam, tomatoes, soy sauce, red wine, and coffee are all known to stain your teeth. Acidic foods like hot sauce and lemon juice can also damage the surface of your veneers, but it is a good idea to keep them to the minimum.
While veneers don’t stain easily, it is not unheard of either. By taking extra special care of the, you can enjoy having a bright, white smile for many years to come.
About the Author
Dr. Johnny Cheng graduated from the Baylor College of Dentistry and has been serving patients at Hulen Dental for more than 20 years! He has completed more than 500 hours of postgraduate training and is currently a member of several professional organizations, including the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry. For more information on caring for porcelain veneers or to schedule an appointment, visit his website or call (817) 292-5957.