dental veneer maintenance mistakes

7 Dental Veneer Maintenance Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

Your smile is often the first thing people notice when meeting you. But according to the American Association of Orthodontists, over one-third of Americans are not satisfied with their teeth. 

If you suffer from tooth stains, crooked or damaged teeth, or are hiding a chipped tooth, you’re not alone. The good news is that there’s a fix: dental veneers. 

Dental veneers are a minimally invasive, quick way to fix minor cosmetic issues and give you the pearly whites you’ve always wanted. 

But there are several common dental veneer maintenance mistakes that can damage your new smile almost as soon as you leave the office.

It’s important to note that maintaining your veneers does take extra care. Check out the top 7 mistakes to avoid to keep your smile looking its best.

1. Drinking Coffee, Wine, and Other Stain-Causing Beverages

Many of us already know that drinks like coffee, red wine, and sodas can stain our teeth. But since most veneers are stain-resistant, you may be thinking that you don’t need to worry about what you’re eating and drinking. 

However, there are a few ways stain-causing beverages can negatively affect the look of your beautiful new veneers. They can discolor the bonding agent used to attach the veneers to your teeth. And if you don’t have veneers over all of your teeth, you may notice your veneers and natural tooth surfaces becoming different shades, as they stain at different rates.

This doesn’t mean you have to give up coffee or your other favorite drinks entirely. Using a straw to drink will help the beverage pass by your teeth, protecting your bright smile.

And if you do have a stain-causing drink, rinsing your mouth with water will help mitigate the staining effects, though brushing your teeth as soon as possible is recommended. 

2. Using the Wrong Toothpaste

Veneers are durable, but they are not made from the same material as your natural tooth enamel. Certain types of toothpaste that are great for whitening natural teeth are too harsh if you’re wearing dental veneers. The wrong toothpaste can cause damage, leading to a loss of shine and increased wear over time. 

It’s important to talk with your dentist about the type of material your veneers are made from. They can help you find what toothpaste is best for cleaning dental veneers. 

3. Using the Wrong Toothbrush

Along with using toothpaste that’s too harsh, using a hard-bristled brush can also be too rough for your new veneers. Hard bristles can cause the edges of your veneers to chip.

But they’re not just bad for veneers. Hard-bristled toothbrushes can damage your gums, causing them to recede. And they can scratch your natural tooth’s enamel, making them more vulnerable to damage and decay.  

Whether you use a manual or electric toothbrush doesn’t so much matter, as long as you’re using soft-bristled brushes.

4. Biting On Pens and Other Non-Food Items

Biting on pens, fingernails, and other non-food items is a bad habit for anyone. But if you have veneers, you can quickly damage and chip your new investment with this unconscious habit. 

Even certain foods should be avoided, like hard candies or ice, as these can damage your veneers. The best food for veneers will be on the softer side, but also not sticky like caramels, which could dislodge your veneer. 

It’s best to learn to be conscious of these habits and pay attention to the hardness of certain foods before you have the veneers put in. 

5. Improper Flossing Technique 

The unfortunate reality is that many people do not floss at all. And of those that do, many are doing it incorrectly.

If you fall into any of these categories, you’ll want to start practicing proper flossing techniques before you get veneers. Your dentist can also demonstrate proper flossing so you can know what it should feel like when you do it yourself. 

The process doesn’t change when you get veneers. You don’t need any special veneer cleaning tools, but you’ll want to be mindful of any areas that feel different after getting your veneers.

Especially look out for areas that you can no longer slide the floss through. You’ll want to schedule a follow-up with your dentist as soon as possible to address these issues. 

6. Unknowingly Grinding Your Teeth

Teeth grinding, also known as bruxism, can be caused by many things, such as certain medications or stress. 

Many people are unaware that they grind their teeth. It’s something they could be doing unconsciously while under pressure, or even while they are sleeping. 

Teeth grinding can damage natural teeth, and will quickly chip veneers. Your dentist can help you get fitted for a mouth guard that will help protect you from involuntary teeth grinding in your sleep. 

7. Not Addressing Pre-Existing Conditions 

In addition to teeth grinding, you’ll want to address any other pre-existing conditions that could affect your veneers. 

Overall mouth health is of the utmost importance. Regular brushing, flossing, and preventative dental treatments like cleanings can help you keep your teeth and gums healthy.

If you have serious gum health issues or need dental work on any of your teeth, it’s important to take care of these issues before having veneers put in. 

Putting a veneer over a cavity, for example, will cause the tooth to decay under the veneer. Not only with this compromise the veneer, but decay can become extensive while hidden under the veneer. If left untreated for too long, the entire tooth may need to be pulled and replaced. 

Other Dental Veneer Maintenance Mistakes

Certain veneer maintenance mistakes may go without saying, but just in case, here they are:

  • Don’t buy snap-on veneers off the internet that aren’t fitted to your teeth. Besides looking fake, these may cause damage to your gums. 
  • Don’t get veneers that are the wrong shape and size for your face.
  • Don’t get work done under the table or overseas by an unlicensed professional.

These options may seem tempting, as they cost less upfront. But the damage you could be doing to your teeth may cause you permanent damage that is costlier to fix in the long run. 

Ready to Improve Your Smile With Veneers? 

Now that you know what dental veneer maintenance mistakes to avoid, are you ready to start transforming your smile?

At Justice Dental, we’ve helped so many people in Lexington, Kentucky, get the smile of their dreams.

Check out these before and after veneer transformations to see the work we’ve done. When you’re ready, call to schedule an appointment today so we can create a customized treatment plan for you.