Veneers and crowns are both types of restorative solutions that are used to save your smile. They have both been shown to enhance the appearance and functionality of your teeth. Because they appear to have the same benefits, many people mistake veneers and crowns for each other. However, while these two approaches may appear similar, there are significant differences between them. To assist you in determining which dental restoration method is most appropriate for you, Empire Dental can give you a brief overview of the differences between veneers and crowns, how they function, and when each method should be employed.
Veneers are composed of several thin layers of porcelain that are stain-resistant, typically having a thickness of around one millimeter. They are a non-invasive dental cosmetic procedure that leaves most of your existing tooth intact. They’re specifically crafted to accommodate each patient’s teeth, so they securely cover the front of the tooth. To prepare your tooth for a porcelain veneer, your dentist will remove about a half millimeter of enamel on the front of your tooth, this will make it easier for the veneer to adhere, as the cement will have the greatest success on a rougher surface. However, the volume of enamel that must be removed varies based on the type of veneer. It’s crucial to recognize that a veneer can only be applied to a tooth that already has a lot of enamel on it.
A dental crown is completely over the entire tooth, this means that more of the tooth’s original surface must be prepared before a crown can be installed. They are typically used to restore teeth that have been irreparably damaged by decay, cracks, or fractures. If the decay is the cause of your dental crown, your dentist will have to remove the decayed portion and possibly reconstruct the tooth to allow for the crown. Dental crowns are typically made from porcelain, a ceramic material, PFM, or an all-metal composition. Your dentist will construct the crown so it precisely fits over your tooth and then affixes it to the tooth.
The Difference Between The Two
The primary distinction between veneers and crowns is how they fit your tooth and why they are necessary.
- affixed to only the front surface of your tooth
- more visually appealing because they lack a greater amount of gumline
- may need to be replaced after a specific number of years has passed
- covers your entire tooth
- heavier and more lasting
- can typically last for the majority of your life
Both crowns and veneers are color matched with your teeth, except for all-metal crowns. Both can also enhance your smile’s functionality and your teeth’s health. These procedures are expensive, especially when multiple teeth are affected.
Which is Right For You
Since veneers and crowns seem to have the same basic purpose, can they be utilized interchangeably? Actually, no. Your dentist will choose one treatment option over another based on your specific situation. Dental crowns are typically the most effective option if your tooth is severely damaged, has a large filling, or has undergone a root canal because the tooth enamel is already compromised and needs to be more thoroughly protected. Porcelain veneers, however, are primarily intended for cosmetic purposes.
Do you have a tooth or a few teeth that would benefit from either? Empire Dental can assist you in determining the most appropriate treatment option for you. Whether you want your tooth to be completely repaired with a crown or just want to enhance the appearance of your smile with a porcelain-like set of dental veneers, we can provide you with the dental care and cosmetic procedures necessary to have a healthy, beautiful smile. Call us at (250) 374-7227 and set up an appointment today!