New glass-ceramic restorative materials have been developed over the last few years, with enhanced strength characteristics along with desirable optical properties that make them ideal for the fabrication of esthetic crowns and veneers. The purpose of this paper was to provide an overview of the current state of the art of porcelain veneers as a viable option for the esthetic treatment of anterior teeth, and to illustrate the potential of the newly-developed glass-ceramics. Some historical background about the development of the porcelain veneer concept is provided. A list of indications and contraindications for porcelain veneers is followed by their preparation designs, with emphasis on the importance of maintaining the preparation boundaries within the enamel. Impression-taking procedures, provisional restoration fabrication, the choice of porcelain materials and their intaglio surface treatment are all discussed. A case where veneers made with a lithium-disilicate glass-ceramic were used to improve the appearance of maxillary anterior teeth is included. Several studies reporting on the longevity of porcelain veneers up to 12 years are discussed.
Keywords: dental porcelain; glass-ceramic; longevity; update.