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Porcelain veneers are thin shells of ceramic that are bonded directly to the front surfaces of the teeth. They can be likened to ladies ‘false fingernails’. When bonded to teeth they are virtually undetectable and highly resistant to coffee, tea and even cigarette stains.

Porcelain veneers are indicated for discoloured, malformed or cosmetically compromised teeth. If correctly planned and looked after they can be used for many years (even though the studies say the average life span is 7-10 years). If your tooth is dark, it may be prudent to first bleach the teeth and then veneering them.

Most cases will require some minimal preparation in order to make space for the veneers. It is possible to have veneers which require no tooth preparation at all, but in order to get depth of colour and the most natural look some preparation is preferred.


  • Excellent cosmetic results are achievable
  • Conservative (compared to crowns)
  • Durable, can be used for many years


  • Not recommended for patients who grind their teeth unless the whole mouth is corrected to improve the bite. These patients have a tendency to chip and fracture the veneers
  • Not recommended for teeth with large existing restorations. In these cases crowns may be a better alternative
  • Requires some tooth removal
  • Difficult technique – sounds easier than it actually is.