Dental Implants: Stains, Whitenings and Other Considerations
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Dental Implants: Stains, Whitenings and Other Considerations

Dental implants can make a smile look fabulous – I know I have them. However, if you are just thinking about getting them, you may have a lot of questions. You may be wondering how smoking affects implants, whether or not wine will stain them, if they can be whitened or other concerns. I also know from experience that it can be intimidating to ask some of these questions to your dentist. In my dental implant blog, I am going to answer the questions that can be hard to ask. I hope you find the info you need in this blog and that it guides you to the right decision about dental implants. Thanks for reading!

Dental Implants: Stains, Whitenings and Other Considerations

How Stain Resistant Are Porcelain Veneers?

Isobel Berry

If you are considering porcelain veneers for your smile zone, obviously you want to ensure that they are worth it. After all, they don't come cheap. However, despite being only one millimetre thick, a porcelain veneer is capable of lasting 15 or more years. In regards to staining, because of the way that they are made, porcelain veneers are superior to enamel.

To help you understand just how stain-resistant porcelain veneers are, the following article will explore the history and science behind their creation.

Porcelain was Invented in 700 AD

The technique used to create porcelain was developed by the Chinese and is well over a thousand years old. When Europeans encountered pottery made of Chinese porcelain around 700 years ago, they were fascinated by its smooth, glazed surface. It took the Europeans another 300 years to discover how to create their own porcelain.

The Glaze Prevents Staining                           

To create porcelain, kaolin clay, also known as Chinese stone, is heated in a kiln at high temperatures until the water molecules within it evaporate. High quality porcelain, of which porcelain veneers are made, are heated for longer. This helps to close up the pores in the material, making it less porous and therefore waterproof and stain-resistant.

However, until the glaze is applied to its surface, porcelain is still slightly porous. To seal any remaining pores, a dental glaze, which is composed of glass powder, is added to the surface of the porcelain. This glaze coating creates a water-resistant and stain-resistant surface that is ideal for a high quality porcelain veneer.

Abrasive Toothpastes Remove the Glaze

To ensure that your porcelain veneers remain stain-resistant, avoid brushing your teeth with abrasive toothpastes. That means you should stay away from toothpastes that are designed to whiten teeth. Whitening toothpastes combat surface staining due to their abrasive nature. However, these toothpastes will also gradually strip away the glazed surface of your veneers.

Without the glaze, your veneers will lose their lustre and become less stain-resistant.

Micro-Cracks and Abrasions Lead to Stains

You should also take care not to scratch your veneers when eating especially hard foods, such as crispy fried chicken or hard candies. Even microscopic cracks can provide enough  space for staining molecules to accumulate on the surface of a veneer. Chew hard foods carefully or adjust your diet to prolong the stain-resistant quality of your veneers.

Take care of your veneers and they may never stain. However, regular smoking or consumption of wine or coffee may cause surface stains to form on your veneers. Fortunately, a dentist or hygienist can polish the surface of your veneers to remove stains. Polishing the surface of a veneer also helps to restore the shine to veneers that have become dull.