Veneers and crowns are dental restoration methods that can help improve the appearance and function of your teeth. However, veneers and crowns are not the same; one difference is that veneers are placed on the front of the tooth, and crowns completely encompass the tooth. When considering veneers and crowns, your dentist will discuss your situation and help you arrive at an informed decision of which option is best for your dental needs. Continue reading to learn more about the differences between veneers and crowns.
WHAT ARE VENEERS?
Veneers are thin coverings placed on the front of the teeth; they are only about one millimeter thick. Veneers look natural and can correct many dental problems like teeth that are stained, chipped or worn.
There are two different types of veneers:
- Composite veneers also called direct veneers
- Porcelain veneers also called indirect veneers
Your dentist will discuss with you what type of veneers are best for your situation.
WHAT IS THE PROCESS FOR VENEERS?
Composite veneers are usually applied in one appointment, while porcelain veneers take two dental visits. Here is what to expect during the process if you get porcelain veneers:
- Your dentist will grind down approximately half a millimeter of your tooth’s enamel to roughen the surface of your tooth so it can bond successfully with a veneer.
- Your dentist will make an impression of your tooth and send it away to make a permanent veneer.
- The new permanent veneer will be bonded to your tooth with cement and hardened with ultraviolet light.
Just remember that veneer procedures are not reversible; you cannot restore the tooth enamel previously shaved down. Composite veneers usually last for around five to seven years, while porcelain veneers last for about ten years before they need to be replaced.
WHAT IS A CROWN?
A crown (also known as a dental cap) is a restoration procedure that completely encompasses a tooth or an implant; it is about two millimeters thick. Crowns are typically needed when a cavity is too large to fix and is threatening a tooth’s health.
There are many different types of crowns, including:
- Stainless steel
- Porcelain-fused to metal
- All-ceramic or all-porcelain
- Temporary crowns
- Permanent crowns
Your dentist will discuss with you what type of crown is best for your situation.
WHAT IS THE PROCESS FOR A CROWN?
There are typically two appointments to prepare you for a crown. Here is what to expect during the process if you get a crown:
- During your first visit, your dentist will examine your tooth and take x-rays. Next, he or she will numb your tooth and the surrounding gums and file down the tooth so the crown can fit around it. Your dentist will then use a paste to make an impression of your tooth and send that impression away to make your crown.
- A temporary crown is put over your tooth until the permanent crown is delivered. While you have a temporary crown, you should avoid sticky, chewy food, minimize the use of the side of your mouth and avoid chewing hard foods.
- During your second visit, your dentist will take off your temporary crown. Then, he or she will apply an anesthetic to your tooth and the surrounding gums and apply your new crown.
FINDING THE BEST OPTION FOR YOU | THE LANDING DENTAL SPA
Even though veneers and crowns are both types of dental restoration procedures, they are used differently by dentists. For example, a crown is probably the best option if your tooth needs a root canal, has a large filling or is cracked or worn. On the other hand, veneers are primarily used for cosmetic purposes — i.e., if your tooth is intact but needs minor shape corrections.
At The Landing Dental Spa, we accommodate all of our patients with full-service cosmetic and family dentistry. If you have any questions about whether crowns or veneers are right for you, our dental staff will help you find the best treatment option based on your oral care needs and goals. If you would like to make an appointment with us, please give us a call at 304-594-2200 or use our online contact form. We look forward to hearing from you!