Can I Whiten My Dental Veneers? By Dr. Scott Parr on August 26, 2023

Smiling man holding toothpaste and toothbrush

Feeling confident in your smile can make a world of difference, which is why so many people get dental veneers. While these wafer-thin shells can add beauty and brilliance to your smile immediately, you may wonder if they lose their luster over time — and if there’s anything you can do about it.

Whether you’re considering getting dental veneers or have already had them placed, the team at our Virginia Beach, VA, practice is here to shed some light on whether or not you can whiten your dental veneers.

Do Veneers Stain?

Porcelain veneers do not stain. Porcelain is constructed from glass-ceramic and, unlike natural tooth enamel, is non-porous. This means it won’t absorb coffee, tea, red wine, or other common culprits behind stained teeth.

Veneers made from composite materials, on the other hand, may become stained over time. This is because resin — which is used to make them — is more porous than their porcelain counterparts. As a result, these types of veneers often must be replaced every 5 to 7 years.

Whitening Natural Teeth vs. Dental Veneers

Professional teeth whitening is a relatively straightforward process you can have done at the dentist’s office or with a take-home kit. In most cases, it involves applying a bleaching gel containing hydrogen peroxide to the teeth and using a UV light to activate it. The gel’s active ingredient removes the stains and whitens your teeth.

However, this process can’t be applied to veneers. This is because veneers are porcelain or a mixture of composite resins; materials that don’t respond to bleaching agents the same way our natural teeth do.

What Would Cause Veneers to Change Color?

There are a few notable factors that can contribute to discoloration over time:


As we age, the gumline naturally recedes. For those with veneers, it can cause the adhesive to become exposed; the compost material can become stained by the foods and beverages you consume. While not technically veneer discoloration, many can find it unsightly.

Dental Trauma

Your tooth may become discolored if there is damage to the dentin — the inner tissue — or an accident. Damaged dentin darkens in color, which may make it seem like the veneer is becoming discolored, although it’s really the natural tooth beneath it that’s the cause.

So, What Are My Options?

Good Oral Hygiene

The best way to achieve a stain-free smile is sustained care — and that applies to those who have veneers. Make sure to take care of your veneers the same way you would tend to your enamel.

Professional Cleanings

Even though you cannot whiten veneers, professional dental cleanings at our Virginia Beach practice can help remove surface stains.

Veneer Replacement

If your veneers are constructed from substandard materials or have become damaged, you should consult your dentist about replacing them entirely.

Ready for Veneers? Get in Touch With Us Today

At The Smile Center, we use advanced dental porcelain to provide stunning results for patients just like you. For more information about whether veneers are ideal for you or how you can make the dazzling results last as long as possible, get in touch with the team at our dental office in Virginia Beach today.

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The Smile Center

The Smile Center

The Smile Center in Virginia Beach has been providing high-quality dental care since 1988. We are proud to be affiliated with:

  • American Academy of Facial Esthetics
  • The American Orthodontic Society
  • American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry

For more information about our services, contact us online or call (757) 473-8482 today.

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