I have eight veneers on my upper front teeth. I received them last October from a dentist in Indiana. Now that I live in NM, I am concerned about my dental exam and cleaning appointment with a new dentist. Is it possible that the hygienist will break or loosen my veneers around my gumline? – Thank you. Damon from NJ
Thank you for your question.
It is good that you are concerned about how a dental hygiene appointment will affect your porcelain veneers. A hygienist will not loosen or break your veneers. But if a hygienist uses incorrect tools, they can damage the glaze, which will make the surface of your veneers dull.
Dental Tools and Materials That Damage Porcelain Veneers
A dentist and hygienist who received advanced training in caring for porcelain veneers will avoid these tools and chemicals:
- Power polishing equipment – Although some equipment is safe for natural teeth, it can harm porcelain veneers. For example, Dentsply’s Prophy Jet is a device that sprays a mixture of sodium bicarbonate and water on your teeth to clean them quickly. But the chemical blasts away the glaze on your porcelain veneers, and they will begin to stain. And other brands of power polishers will damage your veneers.
- Ultrasonic scaler – The scaler can cause small chips at the margin of you veneers as it gets rid of calculus and bacteria. Plaque and stain can accumulate around your veneers and cause decay.
- Heavy-duty manual scalers – If used on the margins of veneers, a heavy-duty scaler can scrape or chip porcelain veneers.
- Coarse polishing pastes – Although polishing paste restores the gloss of natural teeth, it can scratch porcelain veneers. Trained hygienists use ultra-fine polishing paste instead.
- Acidulated fluoride – Acidulated fluoride etches the surface of porcelain veneers and removes the glaze. A hygienist will use neutral fluoride gel instead.
Ensure your new dentist is an advanced cosmetic who regularly places porcelain veneers. Team members know how to take care of your teeth and veneers without damaging them.
Dr. Steven Brooksher, an accredited cosmetic dentist in Baton Rouge, sponsors this post.