5 Veneers for a Pearl Necklace Smile

Veneers Westport

No single part of your appearance has more of an impact than a beautiful smile.  But for all the time and money we put into our appearance, how much do we invest in our teeth?


Why Get Veneers?

Dental veneers are appealing because they are a pain-free way to transform your smile into a Colgate ad virtually overnight.

The classic veneer works by attaching a thin shield to your tooth that provides a flawless new external appearance.  Variations today include ultra-hard resin (composite veneers) and super-thin ceramic skin (Lumineers).  


Are Veneers Right for Me?

Veneers are a cosmetic procedure for teeth that are:

  • Chipped or cracked
  • Worn 
  • Miscolored 
  • Gapped or spaced too far apart
  • Small or misshapen

While veneers provide the appearance of perfect teeth, they do not actually improve your dental health.  You need to be free of gum disease or cavities before you consider this option.  If you suffer from teeth grinding (bruxism), you can damage some veneers.  

Veneers also won’t give you a pass from your oral hygiene regimen:  you’ll need to brush your veneers just as you do your regular teeth.  


A Pearl Necklace for Your Teeth

Dental insurance treats veneers as an “elective” cosmetic procedure because they are not required to maintain good dental health.  This means that you will have to pay for your veneers out-of-pocket.  

Veneers are paid for on a per tooth basis.  But don’t worry:  you don’t have to buy every pearl on the necklace to get a gorgeous smile.   

A full smile makeover can often be accomplished with veneers for the eight most visible upper teeth.  A lesser makeover might fix the four front upper teeth.  Even one veneer for an unsightly tooth can dramatically improve the appearance of your smile. 


How Much Do Veneers Cost

The per-tooth price range for the 5 main types of veneers are as follows:

  • Porcelain:  $925 – $2500 ($1500 average)
  • Composite:   $400 – $1,500 
  • Lumineers:   $800 – $2000
  • Palatal:  $650 – $1200
  • Removable:   less than $1000


How Long Do Veneers Take?

Traditional porcelain veneers typically take two visits to your dentist.  A one-day option is now possible at Distinctive Dental Services in Westport, saving you both time and expense.  Call (203) 222-1444 to learn about this option.

Composite veneers and Lumineers can be installed in one visit.  


Porcelain Veneers

Porcelain veneers have long been a top choice for their durability and visual appeal.  Porcelain looks remarkably similar to actual teeth.

Porcelain is highest in price because of its great qualities:

  • Natural, tooth-like appearance and shine
  • Resistant to staining, fading, or darkening
  • Durable; resists chipping or cracking
  • Easy to care for 

On your first visit, your dentist will remove a very thin layer of the tooth surface (enamel) in order to allow a perfect integration of the porcelain veneer to your existing tooth.  Your dentist will use imaging equipment to take a laser-perfect impression of your teeth.  These are then sent to the veneer manufacturer, who makes a precisely fitted veneer for each tooth.

Your dentist may attach temporary veneers for a few days until your custom veneers arrive from the manufacturer.  The final porcelain veneers are installed during your second visit.

Beyond the cost, the primary drawbacks of porcelain veneers are the additional dental work and the permanent removal of a thin layer of enamel from the surface of your teeth.

Replacement time:  10- 15 years


Composite Veneers

Composite veneers offer a simpler, more affordable option than porcelain.  They are made of the same tooth-colored material that is used for fillings.  Composite veneers may be better suited to specific types of fixes; your dentist can advise you about your best options after examining your teeth.

Composite veneers can be installed in one visit because the veneer does not have to be manufactured off-site.  Your dentist will apply a fast-curing resin to your tooth and shape a new veneer all in one visit.  It’s just as easy for your dentist to repair or alter a composite veneer in the future. 

  • Advantages of composite veneers:
  • More affordable
  • Easy to repair

Composites are perfectly good veneers, but are often qualified by the ways they fall short of porcelain:

  • Less lustrous appearance
  • More prone to stain
  • Require more care
  • Less resistant to chipping

Replacement time: 5-7 years



Lumineers are a new entrant into the veneer market.  Based on an ultra-thin ceramic film, they have the advantage of not requiring any removal of your tooth’s enamel.  This means they can also be removed without alteration to your existing teeth.

Lumineers are a brand-name product.  The manufacturer claims that they will last 20 years.  Some dentists are skeptical of this promise.  Lumineers have only been available since 2004, so the data on their durability is still coming in.


Palatal Veneers

Also called “onlays”, palatal veneers are applied to the inside surface of the front teeth.   They are used to improve the surface of teeth that have been damaged by bruxism, bite patterns, or other erosion.  

Palatals are still considered an elective cosmetic procedure, even though the insides of your teeth are less visible to other people.  Palatal veneers may actually help with some oral health problems associated with tooth wear, but dental insurance is unlikely to pay for them.  

You can choose from either porcelain or composite material for palatal veneers.  The cost of palatal veneers tends to be significantly less than veneers for the front side of your teeth.


Removable Veneers

Removable or “snap-on” veneers are custom mouthpiece that fits directly on top of your existing teeth.  They are a low-cost alternative that does not alter your existing teeth.  They are not adhesively attached and can be popped out.

Removable veneers may not fit as comfortably as other veneer options.  They also need to be replaced more often.   However, their affordability and the fact that they don’t require any work on your teeth make them attractive for those not ready to commit to traditional veneers.


Ask Us About Your Veneer Options

Distinctive Dental Service is a full-service family dentist in Westport that can walk you through your options for dental veneers.  Please call us at (203) 222-1444 to set up an appointment.  


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