As a society, we’ve become so obsessed with unrealistic standards of beauty that says even our pearly whites are in need of serious attention in order to be beautiful.

If you’ve ever been dissatisfied with your smile in photos or while looking in the mirror, you might be interested to know that hundreds of people are paying thousands of dollars each day to have the shape, color, or positioning of their teeth corrected with porcelain. You’ve heard of people getting veneers, and this purely cosmetic procedure involves attaching wafer-thin porcelain shells to the fronts of your existing teeth.

And while the end result is stunning, the prep work dentists have to do to attach the veneers is so cringeworthy.

These procedures are typically carried out over two appointments.

The first step of the process involves shaving off the front side of your teeth. In order to add veneers to the front of your teeth, the enamel needs to be trimmed down by the same thickness of the veneers. If you have second thoughts, it’s already too late by this point…

…unless this seems like a good look to you. The resulting patterns are freaking looking, aren’t they?

On average, 0.5 to 0.7 millimeters of the enamel is removed.

Next, in order to ensure that the veneers are the same shade as the rest of your teeth, your dentist will compare your teeth to their shade guide. This might be the most harmless step in the entire process.

With the trimming complete, your dentist will take an impression of your mouth in one of two ways. They may use a special impression paste or putty which is swished around in your mouth until it hardens.


In this impression process, the dentist may insert retraction cord into the space between your gum line and your tooth. While it may look incredibly painful, this step is necessary to ensure your veneer tucks just underneath your gum line.

Another way the dentist may take an impression of your teeth with a dental milling machine that will take an optical impression, rather than a hardened proof.


Once your veneers are fabricated to match the impressions, the time has come to test fit the veneers by pasting them onto your teeth before the permanent bond is complete.

During this step, the veneer shape, color, and fit are tested to make sure everything is a perfect match.

After washing off the trial paste and cleaning off the surface of your teeth by polishing the area before etching the surface with an acid etching gel. The etching gel creates a rough enamel surface, making it easier for the veneers to bond.

With your veneers in place, your dentist will then shine a “curing” light on your teeth to activate the bonding agent and the cement, which forces them to set in place as quickly as possible. And in just a minute’s time, the entire veneer procedure is done.

(via Animated Teeth)

I’ve never been that big of a fan of the dentist, so unless it’s an absolute necessity, I’m not sure veneers are for me. But for those of you considering the procedure, at least now you know exactly what you’re in for before diving head first in. I really just can’t get past the etching phase.


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