If you are looking for a way to fix various cosmetic issues with your smile, then you may be considering veneers. One of the most significant choices you might need to make is deciding between composite vs. porcelain veneers. Which one is better?
We prefer not to think of it in absolute terms of better or worse. Both composite and porcelain veneers can help you get the smile you want. Each has its own set of pros and cons. The question really isn’t which is better but which one fits your needs. This includes the issue you want the veneers to fix, your budget, your age, and where the veneers will be placed in your mouth.
Keep in mind that your smile is as unique as you are. This article isn’t a substitute for the individualized dental care you need. It is to give you some basic information so you can have informed decisions with your dentist.
Chances are you already know a little about veneers, but just in case, veneers are a thin tooth-colored shell attached to the tooth. Cosmetic dentists use them to improve the appearance of a specific tooth or a few teeth. Some aesthetic issues veneers can address include:
To find out whether veneers are right for you, talk with a cosmetic dentist about your goals and hopes. The dentist will help you learn about your best options and whether veneers may meet your needs.
A porcelain veneer is a thin translucent shell of porcelain that a cosmetic dentist affixes to the front of a tooth. They are a popular option since many believe they are more natural looking compared to composite veneers. As Colgate said, “With its translucent quality, porcelain most closely matches the look of a natural tooth.”
Porcelain veneers also have a reputation for durability, often lasting over a decade, while the typical composite veneer often lasts around a few years.
You will usually need to see your dentist more than once for a porcelain veneer. Your dentist will need to prep the tooth and then order a custom-made porcelain veneer from a lab. Once the veneer arrives, you will need to come back. In the meantime, you may have a protective temporary veneer. This process can also be done in one visit if they use the CEREC technology, where the veneer is made the same day in the dental office.
The prep work requires your dentist to remove a little of your protective tooth enamel. This means your tooth will have a little less of its natural protection, so you will always need either a veneer or cap to protect the tooth. You also may not be able to switch to a composite veneer since your tooth will need the reinforcement and protection of the porcelain.
Healthline summarized the benefits of porcelain veneers compared to composite veneers:
A composite veneer is crafted from a translucent tooth-colored, dental-grade resin. Your dentist can sculpt it, which makes it a good option for repairing cracks and chips in the tooth. The skill and technique of your dentist make a big difference in the durability and longevity of your composite veneer since it is sculpted for your mouth. Keep this in mind since your real-world results may be a little different from the average.
Composite resin veneers are less invasive than porcelain veneers meaning your dentist will not need to remove as much of the tooth’s enamel. Since the process of applying the two types of veneers vary, so does the number of office visits. If your dentist applies composite veneers, you may only need a single appointment.
Healthline summarized some of the benefits of composite veneers over porcelain:
While porcelain veneers may look more authentic and last longer, composite veneers are a better choice for some due to the convenience, cost savings, or because their dentist needs to sculpt the veneer directly on the tooth to cover a crack or chip. As you may be able to see, when it comes to cosmetic dentistry, there is no such thing as a “one size fits all” solution.
Southview Dentistry proudly offers both cosmetic and oral health dentistry services to members of the Charlotte community. During a consultation, we examine your teeth and help you understand your options based on your:
• Aesthetic goals: In the case of veneers, the best choice may vary depending on your specific goal, just like any other aesthetic treatment.
• Budget: In an ideal world, budget wouldn’t matter; however, we all must keep it in mind.
• Overall oral health.
As oral health professionals, this is paramount. We strive to help you look your best while improving or maintaining your health.
We love seeing our patients’ confident smiles when they love their results. Contact us today to schedule your consultation.