Porcelain Veneers vs. Composite Veneers

 In cosmetic dentistry

When it comes to covering up what spoils your teeth and tarnishes your smile, porcelain veneers could be the answer. Thin skins of porcelain or resin bonded to the front of teeth to improve their appearance, veneers can mask the chips, cracks and unevenness caused by age, wear and tear, or grinding, as well as cover ugly permanent stains and even take away some unsightly small gaps.

In opting for veneers, you have a choice between using composite or porcelain ones.  Both perform the same function and will definitely enhance your smile, but as with any choice, the question is which type of veneer best suits you. Your trusted dentist in downtown Vancouver, BC presents you a comparison of composite and porcelain veneers.

Porcelain veneers

Porcelain Veneers

Getting a porcelain veneer is a more complicated process. It is going to cost more and will involve more visits to the dentist. The porcelain veneers are created at a laboratory, which takes time and special expertise, and a temporary veneer will usually be used to tide you over until the final one is bonded to your tooth.

Porcelain veneers are recommended when the defects are larger and more noticeable. They are extremely strong if applied to healthy teeth and can last for anything up to 20 years provided they are properly cared for both with proper oral hygiene and by avoiding biting hard objects. However, if they do break, they cannot be repaired. If you tend to grind your teeth, it may be necessary for you to use a bite guard at night.

Aesthetically, porcelain veneers look extremely natural because of porcelain’s translucent properties, and this, together with their ability to resist staining, makes them great smile enhancers. Contact your local downtown Vancouver dentist to learn more about how porcelain veneers can enhance your smile.

Composite resin veneers

Composite Veneers

Composite veneers are made of a tooth-colored resin and can be created and applied right away in your dentist’s chair, so they are a good deal cheaper than their porcelain counterparts and the smile-change is immediate.

They may look a little more obvious than porcelain ones as the resin is bonded to the front of the tooth and then shaped to ensure it fits and functions well in the mouth while you are sitting there. They are also not as durable or as resistant to staining as porcelain ones, and require more maintenance, but they involve less removal of your tooth structure and can be removed and replaced if necessary.

The downside of veneers

If you decide to have a veneer, you cannot change your mind later. Veneers are an irreversible treatment because of the removal of some tooth structure to allow them to fit in well with the other teeth in your mouth and your overall bite.

Certain adjustments can be made, or other veneers made, but your tooth cannot be returned to how it was before the veneer was applied. Veneers will also probably have to be replaced at some stage in the future as even porcelain ones have a limited life – even if that life is a long one.

Veneers will not solve some problems like bad bites or where there are badly positioned or badly aligned teeth. They also cannot be bonded to unhealthy teeth, or to teeth with too little enamel.

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