One of the reasons why people get porcelain veneers is that their natural teeth in the front have been worn down by years of grinding, chewing, and, possibly misuse. But will porcelain veneers just wear down, too?
Veneers Are Hard and Brittle
It’s important to understand that although they can look like your natural tooth enamel, porcelain veneers aren’t like your natural teeth. Instead, they are much more rigid than your natural teeth material, which is designed to flex. And as the tooth flexes, it tends to wear more than chipping and cracking, although it can chip and crack, too. Veneers are the opposite. Subjected to high forces, veneers are more likely to chip and crack, and less likely to wear.
Another factor in the wear of your natural teeth is their vulnerability to acid. Acid attack from foods, beverages, and oral bacteria, can remove your natural tooth enamel and dentin. And what it doesn’t remove, it softens, making your teeth more vulnerable to wear. But porcelain veneers are resistant to acidic attack and won’t be softened, so they won’t wear down.
Even when subjected to very abrasive forces, such as the additives in some toothpastes, veneers are just likely to get scratched.
In situations where your teeth have been worn down and need to be built up, we might recommend dental crowns or more extensive porcelain veneers that provide more structural support and protection for your teeth. This will reduce the risk of chipping or cracking your veneers.
We Will Adjust Your Bite
But the main problem with getting porcelain veneers after wearing down your natural teeth is that we control the forces that led to your initial tooth wear. Although veneers and crowns are stronger and less subject to wear than your natural teeth, they will be damaged if your bite is imbalanced.
Oral splints can help protect your veneers if you have bruxism, but even better would be to eliminate the bruxism or the imbalanced forces that might damage your veneers any time you bite down on food or chew.
This has many advantages for you. Not only will it protect your veneers, but it will protect your natural teeth, and it may eliminate jaw pain or headaches you may be having. Unfortunately, many dentists don’t understand the neuromuscular dentistry principles and techniques necessary to ensure a balanced bite. They may even lack the equipment to measure whether your bite is truly balanced. Equipment like the TekScan digital bite impression allows us to measure the exact forces in your mouth so we can identify any potential risks to your teeth or restorations.
If you are looking to repair teeth that have been damaged by wear, we can help. Please call (843) 706-2999 for an appointment with a Hilton Head cosmetic dentist at Beyond Exceptional Dentistry today.