Diet and Dental Veneers: Foods to Avoid to Protect Your Investment

Dental veneers can truly revolutionize your smile. They are a worthy investment for people seeking to enhance their appearance, but like any investment, they require a level of maintenance to keep them looking their best. One of the most overlooked aspects is the diet; what we consume can greatly impact the lifespan and appearance of our veneers.

Dr. Peter Epstein, a renowned dentist with over 20 years of experience in cosmetic dentistry, provides valuable insights on maintaining your veneers. “You wouldn’t purchase a luxury car and put cheap fuel in it. The same goes for your dental veneers. The quality of what you put into your mouth can make a significant difference,” he explains.

The ‘NOT’ List: Foods to Avoid with Dental Veneers

Here are some of the foods that experts like Dr. Bernkrant recommend avoiding:

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1. Hard Foods

While dental veneers are durable, they’re not invincible. Hard foods can potentially crack or chip them. This includes certain fruits and vegetables like raw apples and carrots. If you must eat these, it’s advisable to cut them into smaller pieces to reduce the risk of damage.

2. Sticky Foods

Sticky foods are a veneer’s nemesis. Toffees, caramels, or sticky candies can dislodge a veneer, leading to unplanned and potentially costly visits to your dentist.

3. Highly Pigmented Foods & Drinks

While veneers are more resistant to stains than your natural teeth, repeated exposure to highly pigmented foods can lead to discoloration over time. Common culprits include coffee, red wine, and berries. Consider drinking pigmented liquids with a straw and rinse your mouth after consumption.

4. Acidic Foods

Acidic foods and beverages, like citrus fruits and soda, can weaken the bonding material that holds the veneer in place. Over time, this can lead to the veneer becoming loose. It’s best to minimize consumption of these foods and drinks, or at least rinse your mouth with water after having them.

5. Alcoholic Beverages

Alcohol can break down the composite material used in veneers. While an occasional drink won’t cause significant harm, regular consumption can degrade your veneers over time. If alcohol consumption is a regular part of your lifestyle, consider speaking with your dentist about ways to better protect your veneers.

The Safe List: Foods That are Kind to Your Veneers

While it may seem like the ‘NOT’ list is exhaustive, there’s still plenty of variety in the foods that are safe for your veneers. Most soft, non-sticky, and non-acidic foods will not damage your veneers. Lean proteins, dairy products, soft fruits and vegetables, and whole grains are all excellent choices.

Expert Tips for Protecting Your Dental Veneers

Here are a few bonus tips from dental experts on how to protect your veneers:

  • Practice good oral hygiene: This includes brushing twice a day, flossing daily, and regular dental check-ups.
  • Wear a mouthguard: If you play contact sports or grind your teeth, a mouthguard can protect your veneers from damage.
  • Use a straw: This simple habit can protect your veneers from pigmented drinks.

Dental veneers can bring confidence in your smile, and it’s crucial to take care of them. With the right diet and care practices, your veneers can last a long time, allowing you to continue enjoying that transformed smile. Always consult with your dentist if you’re unsure about any aspect of caring for your veneers. They are, after all, an investment worth protecting.

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