You would be forgiven for believing crowns and veneers are the same because both are common dental restoration methods. However, while they both improve appearance, there are major differences between the two.
What Are Veneers?
Dental veneers are a thin layer of porcelain (or composite) used to change the shape and appearance of teeth. The results are dramatic, and veneers can be used to address a variety of dental issues. This includes badly stained teeth, broken teeth, closing gaps, reshaping teeth, and even correcting crowding.
Composite veneers are the more affordable option and are built onto the tooth’s surface. The material is layered onto the tooth as a paste, and a curing light hardens them in place. While more affordable, it is less durable and stain-resistant. While porcelain veneers can last up to fifteen years, composite veneers will only last as long as five.
You will need to make two visits minimum for veneers. The first trip is for preparation and shade matching. The second visit is when a veneer is fitted.
What Are Crowns?
A crown is somewhat like a hat for teeth; it’s a covering. The crown of your tooth is what bites and chews; it’s the area of the tooth visible above your gum line. If it is cracked, broken, chipped, or damaged, the dental crown effectively restores it to its original state. The idea is to encase a damaged or defective to prevent further harm. Once fitted, it looks and acts like a new tooth. More importantly, it prevents (or delays) the need for extractions.
As far as material options go, crowns can be gold, porcelain, and zirconia. Gold is the most durable, but it is also the most noticeable.
For crowns, three visits are generally necessary. The first is an examination. The second is to begin crafting the crown and preparing the tooth; the final trip is fitting. As your tooth will be filed on the second visit, a temporary crown will be placed until your final match is fitted.
The Pros & Cons
A crown is generally the correct choice if you need a root canal, have a cracked or worn tooth, or already has a large filling. However, a veneer might be the better choice if you need a minor shape correction or you are looking for a cosmetic improvement.
The Pros of Veneers
- They are more aesthetically pleasing.
- With minimal trimming involved, the majority of the natural tooth remains.
- Veneered teeth experience minimal movement.
The Cons of Veneers
- They leave more of the tooth at risk of new decay.
- They aren’t reversible, and as composites only last around five years, you will have to replace them.
- Typically, insurance will not cover the cost of veneers.
- A polish can damage your veneers, so speak to a dental hygienist first.
The Pros of Crowns
- The tooth is fully covered therefore fully protected from new decay.
- There’s no need to remove them for cleanings.
- If you opt for porcelain, it looks and feels like natural teeth.
- Your insurance provider may cover a portion of the cost.
The Cons of Crowns
- Most of the tooth has to be removed to make space for a crown.
- Initially, you may experience increased sensitivity and gum pain.
- If you opt for porcelain, it is prone to damage over time due to its fragility.
When To See Your Dentist
If you’re interested in crowns or veneers, your next step is to speak to your dentist. You want to know their experience with completing both procedures, as well as how long the procedure takes, how long the results last, and whether there’s any special care required. A professional can also advise as to which solution is right for you.
Whether you need an emergency dentist or you want to speak to a Camden dentist about the cost of dental implants, contact Aesthetic Denture Clinic to learn more about your options. We accept all major health funds and also offer Afterpay dental for a variety of treatments.