Dental treatments have come a long way in recent years, with advancements in materials, techniques, and technologies making it possible to achieve a flawless and long-lasting smile. Two popular dental treatments that have been helping people achieve the perfect smile are veneers and crowns. Both veneers and crowns are cosmetic dentistry options that can improve the appearance of your teeth, but there are important differences between the two that should be considered before deciding on a treatment option.
What are Veneers?
Veneers are thin, custom-made shells made of porcelain or resin that are bonded to the front of your teeth to improve their appearance. They are typically used to address cosmetic issues such as gaps between teeth, misshapen teeth, discolouration, and minor chips. Veneers are a non-invasive procedure and can transform your smile in just two or three visits to the dentist.
Pros of Veneers:
- Non-invasive: Veneers are a non-invasive treatment option and do not require the removal of any healthy tooth structure. This makes them an ideal choice for people who are looking to improve their smile without undergoing extensive dental work.
- Quick results: Veneers can be placed in just two or three visits to the dentist and the results are immediate. You can walk out of the dentist’s office with a brand-new smile, which can boost your confidence and self-esteem.
- Natural appearance: Veneers are made of porcelain or resin, which mimics the natural translucence and colour of your teeth. This makes them an ideal choice for people who want a natural-looking smile.
- Durable: Veneers are a durable and long-lasting option for improving your smile. With proper care, veneers can last for up to 20 years.
Cons of Veneers:
- Expense: Veneers are a cosmetic treatment and are not covered by insurance. They can be an expensive option for people who are looking to improve their smile.
- Permanent changes: Veneers are a permanent treatment option, and once they are placed, they cannot be removed. This means that you will have to live with the results for the rest of your life.
- Sensitivity: Veneers can cause sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures, which can be uncomfortable for some people. This sensitivity usually subsides within a few days or weeks after the veneers are placed.
- Requires a healthy tooth structure: Veneers can only be placed on teeth that have a healthy tooth structure. If you have significant decay or damage to your teeth, you may need to have a crown placed instead of a veneer.
What are Dental Crowns?
Crowns are dental restorations that are placed over your natural teeth to improve their appearance and function. They are typically used to address structural issues such as broken or cracked teeth, or to protect weakened teeth from further damage. Crowns can be made of various materials including porcelain, resin, and ceramic.
Pros of Dental Crowns:
- Strength: Crowns are an ideal choice for people who have damaged or weakened teeth. They are strong and durable and can protect your teeth from further damage.
- Versatile: Crowns can be used for both cosmetic and functional purposes. They can be used to improve the appearance of your teeth and to address structural issues such as broken or cracked teeth.
- Long-lasting: Crowns are a long-lasting treatment option and can last for up to 20 years with proper care.
- Improves appearance: Crowns can be custom-made to match the colour, shape, and size of your natural teeth, which can greatly improve the appearance of your smile. Crowns are also effective for covering up discoloured or stained teeth and can improve the overall aesthetics of your smile.
- Protect other teeth: Crowns can also be used to protect surrounding teeth from excessive wear or damage. This is particularly important if you have a misaligned bite or a missing tooth, which can put stress on your other teeth.
- Quick results: At Hamilton Dental Centre, we offer a same day crowns service which means your new crowns can be measured and fitted in just one day. Using CAD/CAM technology, the process of moulding your crowns has been digitised with 3D scans and virtual designs used in conjunction with state-of-the-art milling machines that can create tooth crowns from a single piece of ceramic.
Cons of Crowns:
- Invasive procedure: Tooth crowns require a more invasive procedure than other cosmetic dental treatments, as the visible portion of the tooth must be removed to make room for the crown. This can cause some discomfort and require multiple dental visits.
- Cost: Crowns can be quite expensive, especially if you need multiple teeth treated. The cost of a crown varies depending on the type of crown you choose and the number of teeth you are having treated.
- Risk of tooth sensitivity: Crowns can cause tooth sensitivity, especially if the crown is too high or if there is a gap between the crown and the tooth. This can cause discomfort when eating or drinking hot or cold foods and drinks.
What lasts longer, crowns or veneers?
Crowns and veneers can both last for many years with proper care, but crowns tend to have a longer lifespan compared to veneers. Crowns are designed to protect and strengthen damaged or weakened teeth, making them more durable than veneers. Crowns are made of stronger materials, such as porcelain, metal, or ceramic, and are anchored onto the existing tooth structure with dental cement. This provides additional support to the tooth, which can help to extend its lifespan.
On the other hand, veneers are thinner shells that are bonded to the front of the tooth. Although veneers are made of durable materials, such as porcelain or resin, they are not as strong as crowns. Over time, veneers can chip, fracture, or become loose, and may need to be replaced.
In terms of longevity, both crowns and veneers can last for many years, but the exact lifespan of each will depend on factors such as the materials used, your oral hygiene habits, and your overall dental health. To maximise the lifespan of your crowns or veneers, it is important to maintain good oral hygiene practices, such as brushing and flossing regularly, and visiting your dentist for regular check-ups and cleanings.
Do crowns look as natural as veneers?
The natural look of crowns and veneers depends on several factors, including the type of material used and the skill of the dentist. Crowns can be made of a variety of materials, such as porcelain, ceramic, and metal, and some materials can look more natural than others. For example, porcelain crowns are often chosen for their ability to mimic the colour, translucence, and texture of natural teeth, making them a popular choice for cosmetic dentistry.
However, not all crowns have a natural look, and some materials, such as metal, can be noticeable and unappealing. If a natural look is important to you, it is important to discuss your options with your dentist and choose a material that is well-suited to your needs.
In comparison, veneers are often chosen for their ability to create a natural-looking smile. Veneers are thin, custom-made shells that are designed to match the colour and shape of your natural teeth, making them a popular choice for cosmetic dentistry. Veneers are often made of materials, such as porcelain or resin, that mimic the natural translucence and colour of your teeth, giving them a very natural look and feel.
In conclusion, while both crowns and veneers can create a natural-looking smile, the natural look of each will depend on several factors, including the material used, the skill of the dentist, and your individual preferences. If you are looking for a more natural look, veneers may be a better option for you, but it is important to discuss your options with your dentist to determine which solution is right for you.
Both crowns and veneers have their pros and cons and it is important to talk through the options with your dentist to work out the best solution for your needs. At Hamilton Dental Centre, our dentists are highly skilled in fitting both crowns and veneers, with many years of experience working with different types of teeth. Talk to your dentist and discover the best option for your teeth.