When you are embarrassed by your smile, it can affect all parts of your life. You are more likely to stay in the background at work instead of going for those promotions and are more opt to be a homebody then going out with friends and pursuing romantic relationships. With today’s advances in dentistry, however, you don’t have settle for an imperfect smile.

One option available to you is porcelain veneers, medical-grade ceramic shells that are attached to the surface of your teeth. They can help correct a lot of issues including yellowing teeth or gaps or uneven teeth. Veneers can also be used in combination with teeth whitening and dental crowns to get you the smile you have always dreamed of.

Here are some of the many benefits of getting veneers.

Offers a more natural smile

A lot of times when you need dental work, because of the materials used, your smile will lose its natural look and feel, but with porcelain veneers you don’t have to worry about that. Porcelains used today are stronger and are more like natural dental enamel, even reflecting light in a similar way. Veneers do not easily stain either, but you do have to be careful of the bonding material used because sometimes that can get discolored from certain foods and drinks. Most common types of veneers are pressed ceramic, stacked ceramic and lithium disilicate.

Boosts your self-confidence

The biggest benefit of getting veneers, of course, is a brighter, more beautiful smile. While we try to deny that appearance matters, we all know how more confident we feel when we are happy with our appearance. When you love your smile, you will be more likely to flash your pearly whites more, and your renewed confidence will be felt by everyone around you. No longer will you be afraid to go for what you want whether it is a promotion or a new relationship.

Boosts overall health

Besides aesthetic benefits, veneers also strengthen damaged teeth without there having to be removal of a lot of the tooth’s structure. If you have severely damaged or weakened tooth, however, then a dental crown will offer better protection.

Veneers also encourage better oral hygiene. When you are happy with your smile, you don’t want to do anything to mess with it so you are extra incentivized to keep your teeth and gums healthy to avoid tooth decay and gum disease. When you have a filling placed in a tooth that has a veneer, the veneer might not be able to be reattached after the procedure.

Offers quicker, cheaper solutions

Veneers are a quick and convenient way to improve your smile. Dentists can restore your teeth by adding veneers that match the shape and color of your teeth.

If your dental issues are more gapped or crooked teeth or minor alignment issues, then veneers might be a quicker, cheaper alternative to orthodontic treatment like braces and retainers which can take years for similar results and has a heftier price tag. Veneers also have a smaller price tag than dental crowns.

And while tooth whitening toothpaste or whitening kits might seem a quicker, more affordable solution to a simple problem of yellowing teeth, veneers will offer you a more permanent brighter smile. Veneers are stain resistant and offer more long-lasting whitening benefits that other treatments that need to be touched up a couple of times a year. If you have dark tetracycline stains on your teeth that don’t respond well to teeth whitening procedures, veneers might be a more effective solution.

No recovery needed

Unless you were sedated, you will be able to drive yourself home and resume your normal activities right away. There might be a slight tooth sensitivity after the enamel is removed for about a week. During this time, be careful eating very hot or cold foods or foods that are hard to chew.

Veneers are also very durable and usually last for about 10 years. Like your natural teeth though sometimes damage can occur. If a veneer breaks or comes off, make sure you safely store the piece until you can get to the dentist.

How do you know if you are a good candidate for veneers? You are a good candidate for veneers if you have overall good oral and periodontal health, but just have a minor structural or cosmetic issue with your teeth. Common issues include chips, cracks, gaps between teeth, minor misalignment or discoloration.

Because you need a good amount of healthy enamel for veneers to work (a thin layer of enamel is removed before the veneer is attached), you should first have a consultation with your dentist and ask if you would make a good candidate. If you have tooth decay, gum disease or root canal infection, these will need to be addressed before you can really consider getting veneers. If you tend to grind your teeth or clinch your jaw, your dentist will probably recommend that you seek a different type of restoration

One thing to keep in mind is that veneers are permanent so you will need to continue to have them replaced as you get older or you will have to choose a different type of restoration.

Keep in mind also that because veneers are designated as a cosmetic procedure, most insurances will not cover it. And even know they are cheaper than a dental crown or braces, they are still an out of pocket cost. And if you are getting more than one or two, it is still an investment. Your health and happiness shouldn’t have a price tag however and there are financing options available so talk to your dentist about what would fit your financial situation best.

Once you are ready to pursue getting veneers, take the selection of the provider carefully. Even if your regular dentist offers veneers, take the time to consult with a couple of dentists before deciding who you will go to for the procedure. For the best success, you will want a dentist who is very experienced in cosmetic dentistry, especially veneers. Ask if they create their own veneers or if they send out to a ceramist or dental lab. The quality of the ceramist is also an important considerations. The creation of individualized veneers that shape a particular person’s mouth is like artistry and you will want an experienced artisan in charge.