Not everyone is a candidate for whitening. Bleaching is not recommended if you have tooth-colored fillings, crowns, caps or bonding in your front teeth - the bleach will not change the color of these materials, making them stand out in your newly whitened smile. In these cases, you may want to investigate other options, like veneers or bonding.
- Veneers are thin pieces of porcelain or plastic glued to the front of your teeth. For teeth that are severely discoloured, chipped or misshapen, veneers create a durable and pleasing smile.
There are two types of veneers:
- Porcelain (indirect) veneers, which must first be created to fit your teeth in a dental laboratory and require two visits to the dentist.
- Composite (direct) veneers, which are bonded to your tooth enamel in a single visit.
Bonding uses composite resin to restore chipped or broken teeth, fill in gaps and reshape or recolour your smile. After applying a very mild etching solution that slightly roughs the surface of your teeth and permits the bonding material to adhere, your dentist applies the resin and sculpts, colours and shapes it to provide a pleasing result. A high-intensity light hardens the material, which is then finely polished.
Your dentist can tell you if you are a good candidate for veneers or bonding.