Are Dental Veneers Reversible?

It is no secret that some veneer products are marketed that way. So, can you get your dental veneers removed or reversed? It seems like a simple enough question, but there are, of course, a few complications. The key point is that reversible and removable are two different things. Whether either is possible or even something you’d want, depends on what your original dental condition was and the type of veneers you received.

If you approach the removal question from an academic standpoint, the answer is yes. Veneers can be removed and leave the tooth somewhat intact depending on the skill of the dentist, but there should not be any reason to do this. If the consultation with your dentist was comprehensive and your veneers were high quality and properly fitted to begin with, they shouldn’t need to be removed anytime soon. And even if your veneers simply must come out, this does not mean the original condition or your teeth can be restored.

So, are veneers removable? Technically, yes. Are veneers reversible? No. It’s a little confusing, so let’s look at things more closely.

Fact: The best porcelain veneers are meant to be permanent

At Advanced Dental Artistry, from the very start of our discussions with you about porcelain veneers, our intention is that they will be a smile solution with longevity. It’s why we go through so much careful consultation and, when the time comes to fit your veneers, we do everything possible to do the procedure perfectly.

For smile makeovers, the veneers we use are quite simply the best available: 02.-0.3mm thick and custom made right here, in-house, by our own dental ceramists. Every single one is entirely unique because your dental condition is also entirely unique. If we were to place these right onto your existing teeth, it would make them thicker and larger. Sure, 0.3mm does not sound like much, but given the sensitivity of the mouth and the precision of bite function, it is a major change.

0.3mm veneer porcelain

To avoid thickening your tooth with the veneers, we remove a surface layer of dental enamel. When we do this, we also roughen the surface of the natural tooth to give the adhesive the best texture to bond with permanently. This process of removing a layer of dental enamel and texturing the surface underneath is called ‘tooth prep’. As dental enamel is body tissue, it can ‘re-mineralise’ to an extent, but it depends to what extent the tooth was prepared and if the veneer was ever bonded. You see, once a veneer is attached to your tooth using bonding agent the tooth cannot ever re-mineralise even if it is removed. This is why fitting veneers of the best possible quality in the best possible way means we must make irreversible changes to permanent body tissues.

To summarise, the veneer itself can be removed using special dental tools, but once bonded no matter how minimal the preparation the tooth enamel cannot be put back – although there are some veneer products and licensed dentists who would have you believe otherwise!

So you only take a tiny bit of tooth enamel?

If you are just getting porcelain veneers and nothing else, then yes. However, there is a lot of misconception around the different kinds of cosmetic dental procedures. There are many approaches that can give apparently similar end results. Crowns, for example, might seem pretty much the same, but fitting a crown involves removing a lot more of the dental enamel. After this is complete, the whole white part is replaced with a prosthetic tooth.

This is often done because the natural tooth was too unhealthy and needed reconstructing in order to save it. For cases where we use veneers, there are also times when we must remove more enamel or conduct other orthodontic work to in order to fit your veneers on the right surface in the right placement. Larger improvements, such as straightening or adjusting teeth, often require us to remove large amounts of enamel. On the other hand, covering minor damage or whitening a smile might only involve a minimal removal of enamel.

But other places offer reversible veneers…

Yes, there are some kinds of veneers that marketed as reversible because they only involve the slightest etching of the dental enamel needed to give the adhesive a bonding surface. If this kind of veneer is removed, the rough surface that results from the etching can be polished down smooth. The teeth will appear much the same as they did before the veneers, but there is still an overall loss of dental enamel and as we said before, and because of the bonding agent used, re-mineralisation will certainly not occur.

There are some very well know brands who market these types of veneers as reversible, but none of whom we shall name! They offer different scales of quality and customisation based on price, the cheapest being mass-produced overseas and fitted in 2 appointments without patients ever getting the chance to trial them. Yes, they’re cheaper than custom-made porcelain veneers but give little ability to tailor your smile to your unique face shape, bite and phonetics. This is certainly not the way we operate, nor would we want to. Some things should not be rushed!

Our view is that if are looking at veneers as reversible and not a permanent solution long term you have been misinformed. This product will change your natural tooth structure forever, you cant just take them off If you don’t like them or change your mind 6 months later. Do your research and think carefully. Can your dentist show you cases like Christina whose porcelain veneers were fitted 10 years ago?

Christina had her porcelain veneers fitted around 10 years ago

Veneers are a lifelong commitment to a new smile

When an attempt to reverse veneers must be made, it’s almost always a sign that something wasn’t done properly at a much earlier stage or it is that so much time has passed, your oral health or gum line has changed, and your cosmetics need updating. At Advanced Dental Artistry, we really mean it when we say we fit dental veneers as a long-term solution for your smile.

We strive to do everything properly right from the start, because our goal is always to fit your final porcelain with utter perfection.

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