Can Dental Veneers Be Repaired?

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Can dental veneers be repaired? That’s a really tricky question. The majority of patients who have had some sort of chip or fracture to their veneer would have the inclination to want to ask for this repair, with the assumption that it would be cheaper than replacing a composite veneer. In theory, it can be repaired. In practice, even if it can be repaired- it’s always a compromise. It’s always a compromise in terms of aesthetics. It’s always a compromise in terms of longevity. It makes me wonder as to why that fracture or that damage has occurred to that veneer, and will this source of, I guess, that original fracture potentiate other problems to that veneer down the track, or even potentially break the repair?

In a lot of cases, repairing a veneer or doing what I believe to be just a patch up job is just delaying the inevitable. And in fact, in delaying the inevitable, the patient keeps coming back, repairing the veneer, repairing the veneer and the tally of all those appointments turns out to be far greater than just replacing the veneer for a better one. For me, whenever a patient presents with a broken veneer, a series of questions go through my mind. Has this veneer broken because of some sort of trauma? An isolated incident like a fall or a car accident. Is it a result of the way the patient bites? And this is definitely an issue that needs to be resolved, otherwise, the repair or even the new veneer is, I guess, in jeopardy of suffering damage. So I’d have to investigate that in a bit more detail.

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Is the reason for damage or failure of that veneer something to do with the patient’s hygiene? Is it a high decay rate? Really, is it a technique issue? Was that veneer not a suitable type of veneer for that particular situation? Should this patient have had a ceramic veneer as opposed to a composite veneer?

So I really try to click down on the causes of that fracture before we talk about the options in fixing that problem. And typically I will give the patients option of repair, but with a strong caveat and a strong warning and no guarantee of longevity and success, and always sort of ideally promote for them replacement because that to me is the most long term option for that issue.


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