The Difference Between Porcelain and Composite Veneers

Dentist Chair

Your smile does a lot to show your personality to the world—but what if you’re not comfortable with how your teeth look? If your teeth are stained or uneven, you’ve probably come up with a whole range of ways to hide them, including simply not smiling.

Life doesn’t have to be that way. Dental veneers can correct problem areas and transform your smile into one you’re happy to flash any time. Here’s what you need to know about them.

What Are Dental Veneers?

Dental veneers are a permanent fix for a problematic smile. Veneers are a very thin layer of material that covers your tooth’s natural enamel.

These shells are permanently bonded to your teeth to provide a smoother texture, better color, and a more even shape to each individual tooth. People often choose to apply them to their most visible teeth; you don’t have to apply veneers to your whole mouth if you don’t want to.

What’s the Difference Between Crown and Veneer Procedures?

While dental veneers are composed of a thin layer of composite resin or porcelain, a crown is a cap that fits over the whole tooth. Crowns are designed for strength and are typically used to repair broken or damaged teeth. Veneers, on the other hand, are used to cover healthy teeth to alter their appearance.

Types of Dental Veneers

There are two main kinds of veneers: composite resin veneers and porcelain veneers. Each has its own set of advantages, and are suited to different applications.

What Are Composite Veneers? 

Composite veneers are made from composite resin, the same material used in dental fillings when you have a cavity. It’s similar to plastic and begins as a pliable material that your dentist can sculpt and shape inside your mouth.

Once the veneers are shaped properly, the dentist uses a bright light to harden the resin. Direct composite veneers can be applied to your teeth without altering the enamel, which means they can be applied quickly, with minimal stress and hassle. Composite veneers are cheaper than the alternatives, and can be removed for repair or replacement as needed.

What Are Porcelain Veneers?

Porcelain is a type of ceramic that is fired at very high temperatures to give it increased durability and a glassy sheen. Porcelain is the same material that many fine china plates are made of, and will look and feel very natural when applied to your teeth.

Porcelain veneers are made in a lab based on a mold your dentist makes of your existing teeth. Once your dentist receives the veneers, he must remove part of your tooth’s enamel in order to cement the veneers in place. This means that porcelain veneers are a permanent application.

Advantages of Composite Veneers

  • Lower cost
  • Faster application
  • Less invasive, requiring no removal of enamel
  • Can be removed if needed

Advantages of Porcelain Veneers

  • More natural appearance
  • More durable
  • Less prone to staining
  • Permanent

Before deciding on a procedure, it’s important to consult with your dentist to determine whether composite or porcelain veneers are the right choice for you. If you’re looking for a brighter smile that you can have confidence in, consider contacting us at Lasting Smiles Dental Care.