If you’re a regular coffee or tea drinker, you probably would know by now that these drinks contain tannin that can turn your teeth yellow over time. But do the staining effects apply the same for veneers?
The good news is dental veneers are stain resistant, so you can still enjoy a cup of Joe everyday and no need worry about your veneers changing colour. However, an excessive amount of coffee, tea and even cola can stain the bonding agent used to cement the veneers to your teeth. The material of your veneers play a huge part too.
Do porcelain veneers stain?
Porcelain veneers are the most aesthetic and least harmful. They are extremely biocompatible, which means they rarely injure gum tissues and surrounding soft tissues in your mouth. Out of all veneer materials, porcelain veneers are also the strongest, longest lasting and least likely to stain.
If you are an avid coffee drinker, you might not want to choose composite resin veneers. Composite resin veneers are made of inorganic and organic materials, and the bonding material is the same material used to make dental fillings. While strong, less invasive and not as expensive, composite resin veneers are more prone to stains over time.
How do I prevent my veneers from staining?
Although dental veneers do not stain as easily as natural teeth, they can still become discoloured over time. To prevent staining, you should:
Avoid food and drinks with staining agents
Needless to say, the best way to prevent your veneers from staining is to avoid substances that are notorious for their staining effects, such as coffee, wine and tea. However, if you have to consume them, do so with a straw. With a straw, the liquid bypasses your teeth, preventing staining.
Technically, you can smoke after getting dental veneers as veneers are good at withstanding the effects of tobacco. However, smoking can stain the composite that attaches the veneer to your corresponding tooth, causing the edges of your tooth to look brownish. Moreover, smoking may potentially cause damage to your teeth and gums and cause other dental problems, such as gum disease. When this happens, your veneers may need to be removed to treat the underlying tooth structure.
For these reasons, we recommend kicking the habit of smoking entirely before receiving veneers or any dental restoration work.
Practice good oral hygiene
This includes flossing daily and brushing your teeth twice a day for 20 minutes. Regular toothpaste will suffice; while whitening toothpaste is preferred by many, it is actually quite abrasive and can wear down the resin on your veneers. If you are eating out, remember to rinse your mouth after. While dental veneers cannot develop decay, the teeth underneath and around them can. Any decay or periodontal disease will end up affecting your veneers. It is also good practice to visit the dentist every 6 months for regular cleanings and to check the condition of your veneers.
Wear a mouthguard
If you play contact sports or grind your teeth at night when you sleep (bruxism), consider wearing a mouthguard. Teeth that experience trauma or damage from injury can become discoloured due to ruined dentin. The dentin turns yellow, causing the veneer to appear discoloured.
Can veneers be whitened?
Unfortunately, veneers —including porcelain veneers— do not respond well to teeth whitening treatments. The same goes for dentures, crowns or implants. It is, however, possible to whiten veneers to your desired colour before installing them. Thus, if you whiten them ahead of time, you can count on them to maintain their colour most of the time.
However, you’d want to choose a shade that matches your neighbouring teeth, because the point of veneers is for them to look natural. In this case, you can either opt to have your natural teeth whitened first before choosing your desired veneer colour, or take care of your teeth to prevent stains. This way, you don’t have to replace your veneers in order to match your natural teeth colour.
While you may be unable to whiten dental restorations with teeth whitening treatment, professional cleanings can help remove surface stains and keep them looking pristine — so again, don’t forget to visit your dentist regularly.
Have questions? Read about what happens to your teeth under veneers.
- Guler, A. U., Yilmaz, F., Kulunk, T., Guler, E., & Kurt, S. (2005). Effects of different drinks on stainability of resin composite provisional restorative materials. The Journal of prosthetic dentistry, 94(2), 118–124. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.prosdent.2005.05.004
- Bagheri, R., Burrow, M. F., & Tyas, M. (2005). Influence of food-simulating solutions and surface finish on susceptibility to staining of aesthetic restorative materials. Journal of dentistry, 33(5), 389–398. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jdent.2004.10.018