Cosmetic dentists can use both porcelain veneers and dental bonding to improve a variety of dental issues. Each technique offers its own advantages. Using dental veneers is sometimes referred to as instant orthodontics because they can be used to cover up many problems involving the front teeth, giving the patient a new smile very quickly. Both dental bonding and porcelain veneers can be a good solution for problems such as poorly shaped or crooked teeth, broken or chipped teeth, gaps between teeth, stained teeth and unsightly fillings.
Dental bonding is a technique which uses a composite resin to mask imperfections. This is the same material that is used to fill cavities with a tooth colored composite instead of an amalgam. The resin can be matched perfectly to the patients existing teeth. It is applied freehand by the dentist and is similar to putty which can be contoured and molded to achieve the desired effect. Once the imperfections are masked, the resin is cured and polished. Dental bonding can look quite natural especially when used for smaller issues such as broken or chipped teeth. However, when it comes to using the composite for veneers, the results can vary depending on the skill of the cosmetic dentist as it is very technique sensitive. Since bonding is done right in the office it normally is completed in a single visit, it is also a less expensive alternative for the patient.
Porcelain veneers can be used to repair all of the same concerns that dental bonding can. They are crafted off-site in a dental laboratory. Because the porcelain veneers are custom made for each patient, it is hard to tell them apart from natural teeth (depending of course on the skills of the technician/lab you are using). Porcelain also has a translucent quality which gives the veneer a more natural look. Porcelain veneers won’t change color over the years as they resist staining from coffee, tea, wine and smoking. Because porcelain veneers are fabricated in a dental lab, it can take a week or more for the patient to receive their new smile. It also requires more than one visit to the dentist. The cost of porcelain veneers is considerably higher as well.
Which is Best?
Of course there are pros and cons for both dental bonding and porcelain veneers and both have the potential to be the perfect solution for a patient depending on their unique situation. However, when it comes to the question of which looks more natural, porcelain veneers are probably the most natural looking restoration. There are cosmetic dentists that produce beautiful direct bonded veneers but it does take artistic skill. On the other hand we have all seen people walking around with porcelain veneers that look fake. It is critical that the dentist work with a dental laboratory that has skilled technicians which can provide the end result they expect. Shape, texture, contour, anatomy and translucency are all a part of creating a natural looking restoration.
Image Dental Arts has a team of experienced and highly skilled technicians ready to work with you. If you have any further questions about dental bonding and porcelain veneers give us a call at 260-496-8800.