If you ever considered getting veneers, a fine porcelain wafer that permanently attaches to a tooth to mask its color, shape or position in the mouth, read this first to fully understand the experience, courtesy of Michael Apa, DDS, a cosmetic dentist in New York, Los Angeles and Dubai (also known as LA sculpture of smiles; I mean, his name could very well be Michaelangelo). Because the veneers are A) forever (well, more or less) and B) very expensive.
1. You need to go to someone Amazing to get really awesome results.
This is an aesthetic procedure, but it is also a serious dental procedure (!!), so you will want to see the work of the cosmetic dentist to make sure they are good and that you like their style. Also, be sure to approve your before and after, and that you can see your work 10 years later and still like it. Think of veneers as a boob job for your mouth ... you'll want to make sure you like those babies before they are put on because taking them out is not a fun experience, that and you want them to look ~ REAL ~
2. Veneers aren't a must, but they are an option.
Anyone can benefit from veneers if they don't like the appearance of their teeth or the smile in general, but Dr. Apa sees mainly people who want to correct a problem. For example, you have patients who do not want to undergo orthopedic devices (again!) But they still have crooked teeth, others who do not like the color of their teeth and want to whiten them permanently, and some patients who have chipped front teeth. or that a gray front tooth falls face to the ground, or that you have simply made thicker porcelain veneers in the past and want a more natural finish.
3. One smile does not fit everyone.
"Patients have an idea of what they don't like about their teeth, and then my job is to take what they don't like and make it work for them." FYI: Unlike hairstyles, you can't just take a picture of Gigi Hadid in his or someone else's office and say I want his exact smile, please! Because what works for his face won't work for yours.
"The good thing about what I do revolves around personalization," says Dr. Apa. "First I talk to the patient about what is possible based on their wishes. I also take into account their personality, how they speak, the expressions they make, how high their real smile is in front of a social smile, etc., and then I make sure they get the smile they want, while making sure that their teeth also work in a functional way so they can eat. " Then, there are two ways to try a smile: "One is a direct sculpture of a temporary compound that is created and placed on top of your teeth to show you what we can achieve, and the second is to use technology to create a digital representation consisting of multiple images taken of the patient, "explains Dr. Apa. "Then, in 3D, my team shows the patient his proposed new smile and we move on."
4. Is Imperfections = perfection?
Dr. Apa does not believe in making the teeth look perfect; Instead, he wants to maintain the character of your smile, while improving it. Nor does he want his dental work to be remarkable (there are no gum-like teeth here!); He wants people to look at his patients and think that I feel they did something, but I can't say what it is. "I have practices in Dubai where we treat Asian patients, as well as people from the Middle East, and then we have patients in New York and Los Angeles, who bring different types of nationalities and each one requires different anatomically shaped teeth," Apa says. "For example, Eastern Europeans have teeth with different shapes than Asians, and so on, so it's about understanding that veneers resemble the teeth they were really born with. Because that's my aesthetic and ... when you give something back to people, that seems strange, you are not giving the patient back what he knows. "
5. If you're planning on getting lip injections (or any type of plastic surgery), tell your dentist about it before getting veneers.
"Any other work done on the face throws everything I have in mind when I look at my patients," he says. Side note: if you receive injections in the lips, whether you have veneers or not, you can cast a shadow on your teeth, making them appear more gray, he adds. Wild, right? WHO KNOWS.
6. The color of a veneer is a really tricky thing.
"People always want their teeth to look natural and white," he says. "But their teeth are yellowish-white or grayish-white by nature, but everyone wants white-white. So, the trick is to make their smile white without making their teeth look dense, dull and false." To find the perfect tone, look primarily at a person's skin tone to make a personalized decision, which he transmits to his potter's team. "But I always paint the temporary veneers of the color I am thinking so that the patient can imagine it beforehand," he adds.
7. There is a fee for the consultation
All of the above is discussed in the consultation, which, for Dr. Apa's patients, is $ 500, but if you decide to proceed with the procedure, the fee will be applied to the amount of your general bill. Attention: his veneers cost $ 4,000 per tooth, but in other parts of the country they can range between $ 1,000 and $ 4,000.
8. "Prep" doesn't mean your tooth is about to be shaved to a small nothing of a nub.
"99% of the time, I don't need to shave more than .5 millimeters to win all this before and after you see [think: thinner than your nail]," said Dr. Apa explains.
"All the crux of what makes my teeth different from most is that I am designing the final smile even before I start, so it allows me to be super minimal when it comes to what I have to do to prepare my teeth" . add.
For example, if you enter with large, gray-looking, crooked teeth, it is when you really would have to shave your teeth to get the look you want. But if you have short, hollow teeth, you won't have to do as much "preparation" as shaving.
9. You can either get partial (they don't cover your entire tooth) or full (they cover your entire tooth) veneers.
Each case is different, you can place the porcelain just above your teeth, according to your needs, or, at most, you will need 0.5 millimeters of reduction for a full coverage veneer.
10. After you get your full veneers, Try them for seven to 10 days.
Dr. Apa refers to this as a "test smile." This way you can see how you live with your new "smile". Then, after a week or so, come back and discuss the changes you want to make. Once you and your dentist agree with what you want, more molds are taken, which are sent to a potter for duplication. When the porcelain veneers are ready, they fit your teeth once more to make sure they are a perfect match.
11. That said, Dr. Apa offers a two-day turnaround for veneers, which means you'll only wear temporaries for 48 hours...but there's a rush fee of $20K.
Yes, you have read it correctly: now each office has internal laboratories where their dental gurus can make you smile in 48 hours, but it will cost you. "Everything we do is handmade," explains Dr. Apa. "The traditional way to make veneers is to layer them with a brush and dust, which takes time. But if people travel from outside the city, we don't have that luxury. So, we build a custom laboratory and create a workflow digital that scans your teeth, distributes that information to a computer and then designs your smile. From there, we can integrate your scanned smile into a digital representation of your face (we take 3D photos in advance to do so) plan your smile and see how It fits you ". This image prints a model of a digital printing machine that allows Dr. Apa and his team to start working on the real patient. "We start by numbing the teeth before drilling them [the amount of drilling depends on how tightly the teeth are initially] to create the temples that we will then put in your mouth," he says. "Once the storms are inside, we re-scan the patient's mouth and make adjustments. Based on those results, we approve the entire appearance of the teeth and print the veneers digitally in the office. A potter then makes the final touches. it shapes each tooth and adds natural staining and effects to the porcelain, which gives it character and makes it really look like a real tooth. "
The patient, who is sent home while Dr. Apa's team does their magic (AKA prints, shapes and adjusts the teeth), returns in two days, they go back to sleep and the veneers adhere to the teeth as usual. The only difference when it comes to this express sheet version? The price of a fee of $ 20K.
12. Before the multi-hour application process begins, you'll be numbed with localized anesthesia.
Regardless of whether you choose partial or partial veneers, you will undergo a medical procedure, so local anesthesia is required. Think of it as plastic surgery for your teeth. Oh, and depending on how many veneers you are getting, you could be in the chair for hours. For example, for 10 teeth it is approximately three hours.
13. Bonding cement is used to adhere the veneer onto each tooth.
"Bonding cement is a substance that microscopically creates bridges from the real tooth to the porcelain so that it adheres to the tooth and becomes one," explains Dr. Apa. "Think of it as the glue for a pressure nail, only you won't be able to remove it once it's on." Once the adhesive cement is in place and the veneer is in your tooth, the adhesive cement is cured with a small ultraviolet light to secure everything in place. This process takes about an hour for 10 teeth.
14. Bonding sensitivity is real and it can happen to you.
Fifty percent of patients have binding sensitivity, which is a reaction between the teeth and the bonding cement. The extreme pain with which it comes can last six hours after the anesthesia disappears, followed by a dull ache that comes in waves. Consider ibuprofen as your best friend during that period of time. Days after the procedure, there is often a period of adjustment in which the bite can feel bad and feel a twinge of pain. If either happens, consult your dentist so you can make small changes in your teeth with a file (this sounds more frightening than it is) and remove any excess microscopic cement stuck between the teeth (this is usually the culprit from pain) . The follow-ups are all free, by the way.
15. Your gums will be sore AF.
In addition to the possible bonding sensitivity, there is a general healing process through which the gums pass, because they need to be reformed around new teeth. Again, take out ibuprofen because you will need it.
16. The harder you are on your teeth, whether you grind or clench them, the longer the healing process will take.
That said, all this is a temporary pain. Dr. Apa assured me that each of his patients forgets that they have made their teeth because they * feel * like their natural body after a month or so.
17. Veneers are an investment that you have to take care of.
In Dr. Apa's practice, each veneer, whether partial or complete, costs $ 4,000 each, because he is making the initial teeth that are sent to the potter to copy. But in other practices, depending on where you live, they can cost between $ 1,000 and $ 4,000, therefore, $ 10K to $ 80K for a full mouth. Can't you balance that part of the change? You're not alone. Dr. Apa recommends asking your dentist if he or she offers a payment plan, because not everyone can pay that kind of cash at once.
18. Like fake boobs, veneers last for about 15 to 20 years, then they need replaced.
However, if you don't take care of them (brush and floss regularly), you should replace them before. Anyway, at some point you will have to change them for a new set.
19. To keep them looking amazing longer, you have to go to the dentist twice a year for cleanings and floss regularly.
To help promote oral health, Dr. Apa created products to ensure that his patients (and you, who are sold here!) Have good hygiene. For example, your electric toothbrush offers 50 revolutions per minute, which is comparable to a real polish that you would get at your dentist, it is also set in a 2 minute timer, so you know how long to brush.
Then, he prepared a toothpaste with hydroxylated appetite (HA) instead of fluoride (his teeth are made up of small HA cells), which creates an invisible network through each tooth, strengthening it. Your mouthwash also contains AH and does not contain alcohol, which can cause your gums to recede. And finally, it came out with its own gum gel full of antioxidants, so it helps eliminate inflammation, swelling and creates cell regeneration (also known as keeping pink and healthy gums).
20. To replace veneers, you gently and carefully drill off the old veneer and start the new process over.
Do not worry, more of your natural tooth is not removed when the old ones are removed; Your dentist will wear microscopic lenses to make sure you are not drilling the natural tooth, so do not panic.