Veneers are very thin shells that are attached to the front part of teeth. They are often made of porcelain or composite resin. Porcelain veneers are stronger than composite resin veneers and do not change colour or stain. Generally, porcelain veneers take at least 2 dental visits to apply and composite resin veneers can be done in 1 visit. Porcelain veneers generally last longer than composite resin veneers.
Much like bonding, a mild chemical is placed on the front surface of the tooth to be veneered to make it a little rough. This helps the composite resin to stick to the enamel of the tooth. The composite resin that matches the colour of your natural teeth is chosen so that the veneer blends in with your teeth. The composite resin is then placed on your tooth in layers. A bright light is used to harden each layer of the composite resin. After the last layer of composite resin is hardened, shaping and polishing is performed to form your tooth. The finished tooth looks natural and smooth.
With porcelain veneers, local anesthetic (freezing) may be used. Thin layers of the enamel from your teeth is removed to make room for the veneers, an impression is made and sent to the laboratory to make a mold. This mold is used to custom-make your porcelain veneers. In the meantime, temporary veneers are fabricated to replace the portion of the tooth that was removed. These are worn until your porcelain veneers are ready. The temporary veneers are very fragile and need to be treated gently during eating and cleaning as they come loose very easily.
On your next visit, the temporary veneers are removed the porcelain veneers are then glued to your teeth one by one, using dental cement.