Dental Implants vs Veneers
Dental implants and veneers are two common dental treatments. Both can be effective options if you have damaged teeth. Read on to find out everything you need to know about each of these dental procedures.
What are veneers?
Veneers are a layer of material that are bonded to the surface of generally healthy teeth to help improve their appearance. They are a form of cosmetic dentistry.
You can use veneers to:
- cover discoloured teeth
- repair chipped or teeth
- hide worn teeth, and
- reduce teeth gaps.
Dental veneers can be made of either porcelain or composite resin. Porcelain veneers last longer and tend to look better for longer, so they are the more expensive option.
Composite resin veneers are a cheaper option, and they can offer similar short-term appearance benefits to porcelain veneers. However, resin veneers tend to lose their visual appeal over time.
Are dental implants and veneers the same thing?
No, even though both can have cosmetic benefits.
Dental implants are a procedure to replace teeth. The replacement teeth are artificial and are surgically attached to screws in the gum that perform the same role as tooth roots. You can have a dental implant procedure to replace a single tooth, multiple teeth, or all of your teeth.
Dental implants are a more major dental procedure than attaching veneers. The process to attach dental implants generally takes more dental visits (often several months) and it’s more expensive. Dental implants can also potentially last a lifetime, while veneers will eventually need replacing (both composite resin veneers and the longer-lasting porcelain veneers).
You can potentially have both implants and veneers in your mouth. Implants can be better suited to your back teeth, while veneers may be more suitable for your front teeth. Your dentist will be able to advise if either or both treatment options are suitable for you. It will depend on the overall health of your teeth and gums.
Are veneers dental implants?
Veneers are external front coverings to enhance the appearance of existing teeth, not artificial replacement teeth like dental implants are.
Dental implants can have oral health as well as cosmetic benefits. They can prevent bone loss in your jaw if you have lost a tooth (or teeth). They can be thought of as a restorative procedure. Veneers on the other hand are purely a cosmetic treatment that can help you to feel better about your smile.
How do veneers work?
Veneers are a cosmetic enhancement to your teeth. Your dentist will arrange for a custom designed and made shell to be bonded to your tooth (or teeth) using a dental adhesive. Before the veneer is bonded, your dentist will need to shave approximately half a millimetre off your tooth (or teeth).
The process of designing and attaching veneers can be achieved in as little as three dental visits. There is no surgery involved like there is with dental implants.
Are veneers permanent?
Veneers should be viewed as a dental procedure that permanently affects teeth because of the dental work required to attach them. However, they won’t last forever. Just like your natural teeth, they can stain, chip or break over time.
How long do porcelain veneers last?
This depends on how well you look after your oral health. You can help your porcelain veneers to last longer by:
- brushing and flossing your teeth each day.
- having regular dental check-ups (ideally, twice a year).
If you maintain good oral health, you can realistically expect your porcelain veneers to last for 15 or 20 years.
Can you still get cavities with dental veneers?
Yes you can. That’s because the veneer is an external front covering for a tooth, so the natural tooth still remains and is vulnerable to decay. However, if you practise good dental hygiene, you can reduce the risk of cavities for teeth with or without veneers.
You can’t get cavities with dental implants on the other hand because they are artificial teeth. Your artificial teeth can still attract bacteria like plaque and tartar which can damage your gums. Again, the best way to prevent or minimise any oral health issues is to maintain good oral hygiene.
How we can help
Contact us at our Hay Street clinic in the Perth CBD to find out more about your dental needs. We’d be happy to arrange an appointment to answer any questions you may have about dental implants prices and other dental needs.