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Veneers vs Crowns: What is the difference?

Oct 18, 2023Cosmetic Dentistry, Dental Restoration

What is the difference in Veneers vs Crowns?

The never-ending dispute between Crowns and Veneers has been a topic of discussion for a considerable amount of time. These two dental procedures indeed have distinct objectives, as they both aim to enhance the overall look of your teeth. Dental veneers are designed to cover the front part of a tooth while leaving the rest of the tooth intact. Crowns have the power to alter the appearance of teeth. However, they are utilized when the tooth has extensive damage or when extensive restorations, like a large filling, are considered inappropriate.

Veneers and crowns both have the ability to enhance your smile, making it brighter and more aligned. However, the distinction lies in their application: dental veneers are utilized to cover multiple teeth while crowns are solely for specific teeth. This distinction allows veneers to be primarily associated with cosmetic improvements, while crowns are predominantly used for restorative purposes. Our cosmetic dentist focuses on achieving a consistent appearance by choosing a crown that blends well with the surrounding teeth. If you desire a different tooth appearance, it often involves treating multiple teeth simultaneously.

Simply put, crowns are used to restore and improve dental functionality, whereas veneers are solely utilized for aesthetic enhancements. However, both are made from the same durable and attractive material known as porcelain.


What Are Porcelain Dental Veneers?

Thin layers of stain-resistant dental porcelain compose porcelain veneers, measuring a mere one millimeter in thickness. Veneers provide a noninvasive option in cosmetic dentistry, as they help preserve the majority of your natural tooth. Patients are provided with personalized veneers that securely adhere to the front surface of their tooth for optimal safety. Every patient is provided with personalized porcelain veneers that are custom-made to fit their tooth’s front surface, ensuring a secure fit. The first step in the process requires the dentist to carefully grind down about 0.5 millimeter of the enamel on the front of your tooth. This minor adjustment creates a textured surface, which improves the bonding process with the veneer as the cement adheres more effectively. The amount of enamel reduction required may vary depending on the type of veneer being utilized. It is important to note that a tooth should have enough existing enamel to support the placement of a veneer.


What Are Dental Crowns?

Dental crowns cover the entire tooth and require some filing of the tooth surface before they are placed. Dental professionals often use dental crowns to restore teeth that have experienced significant damage from decay, cracks, or fractures. In cases involving dental crowns, tooth decay frequently requires the extraction of the affected area, which may result in the dentist having to reconstruct parts of the tooth to ensure optimal support for the crown. These crowns are usually made of porcelain, porcelain mixed with a metal alloy (PFM), or an all-metal alloy. The dentist will carefully create the crown to ensure it fits properly on your tooth, and then secure it in place with cement.

Is a Veneer or Crown Right for Me?

Are veneers and crowns interchangeable? This is a common misconception. The selection of a dental treatment relies on your unique circumstances, with your dentist providing the appropriate recommendation. When it comes to a severely damaged tooth, one with a large filling, or one that has undergone a root canal, dental crowns are generally preferred. This is because the tooth enamel has been compromised and needs extra protection. Porcelain veneers are commonly used for aesthetic enhancements. If your tooth has minimal damage and needs slight adjustments or cosmetic improvements, your dentist may suggest using porcelain veneers.

What’s involved with getting a veneer?

The dentist has the option to digitally scan or utilize a mold to create an impression of your tooth, which has been prepared beforehand. In case the dentist lacks an on-site facility, the image or mold will be sent to a laboratory for further processing.

If the amount of trimming done to your tooth is considered, a temporary veneer can be fixed onto it while waiting for the replacement.

After preparation, the temporary veneer will be replaced with the permanent one. A specific adhesive will be used to attach it to the tooth and then hardened using an ultraviolet lamp.

After the veneer is placed, there is typically minimal tooth movement. If you have a habit of grinding or clenching your teeth at night, it may be recommended to wear a protective night guard to protect the veneer.

What’s involved with getting a crown?

To obtain an precise image of your tooth, your dentist has the option of digitally scanning it or making a replica using a mold. If the dental office does not have a lab facility, they will send the image or mold to an external lab to make the crown.

During the process of creating your permanent crown, a temporary crown might be placed by the dentist on your tooth that has been worn down, in order to provide functionality to your tooth.

Once the permanent crown is prepared, the dentist will proceed to eliminate the provisional crown. Afterward, the permanent crown will be carefully placed on your tooth to ensure a perfect fit and proper alignment with your bite. Lastly, the dentist will secure the new crown in its position by applying cement.

When dental crowns are placed on teeth, minor shifting might occur, leading to alterations in your bite. In such cases, it becomes necessary to have the crown readjusted.


Advantages of Dental Crowns

Dental insurance usually covers dental crowns as they protect the underlying tooth from additional damage. Furthermore, our cosmetic dentist uses dental crowns in combination with dental implants or as protection for the chewing surface of a tooth after a root canal treatment.

When there is a large decayed portion on a tooth that cannot be filled, the usual option is to choose a crown. Crowns provide protection and improve the appearance of a tooth by covering it with a thin porcelain layer or a shell made of porcelain fused to metal. Crowns serve a dual purpose, unlike veneers. By safeguarding your oral well-being, these aids not only enhance the appearance of your smile, but also shield your mouth from any potential dental damage.

Our team of treatment coordinators will provide you with a comprehensive overview of your insurance coverage for crowns and estimate any applicable fees. In addition, we provide flexible financing options to ensure that your treatment is affordable.

Uses for Porcelain Veneers

Choosing between veneers and crowns is a breeze if your original tooth is in good shape and you simply desire a different look. Cosmetic veneers made of porcelain solely focus on enhancing the appearance of teeth. These veneers are effective in hiding stains, minor chips, small spaces between front teeth, and other aesthetic concerns.

Cosmetic veneers are designed to cover only the outer part of your teeth, and a typical installation includes 6-8 veneers that match the width of your smile. It is important to mention that some dental practices occasionally use same-day composite veneers, which are a less common alternative and typically involve the placement of only one or two veneers.

Veneers offer the perfect solution when it comes to altering the appearance of your teeth, even without requiring a crown. With veneers, you have the complete freedom to customize their appearance according to your preferences, including the shade, shape, and size that suits you best.

It is recommended to inquire about the availability of flexible payment plans for veneer expenses, as dental insurance usually does not cover them. The cost of veneers can vary based on individual needs, as some people may require more veneers than others.

Contact Our Redlands Dental Office!!

We invite you to visit our Redlands dental clinic. Our skilled professionals provide high-quality care and services. We are excited to meet you and help with all of your dental needs!

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