What’s the Difference Between Dental Crowns and Veneers?
Both dental crowns and veneers conceal dental imperfections irreversibly. Dental crowns encase the entire tooth, but veneers cover the front of the tooth. Crowns replace and protect damaged teeth. Veneers enhance the appearance of the smile.
Dr. Louis Buono offers high-tech restorative and cosmetic procedures for patients who need to improve their smiles. We serve patients from throughout Long Island, NY, at our Garden City, NY, office. Our dentist will examine the current state of your teeth and help you decide which treatment is suitable for your needs.
Restorative vs. Cosmetic Procedures
Dental crowns prolong the life of a tooth, restore function, and improve the appearance of damaged, asymmetrical, or discolored teeth. We recommend dental crowns to:
- Protect a tooth after root canal therapy
- Hide cosmetic issues (such as misshapen teeth or worn enamel)
- Strengthen weakened, cracked, or broken teeth
- Attach to a dental implant to replace a single tooth
Veneers are placed on the front of the teeth to hide cosmetic imperfections. They can modify the appearance of teeth that are:
Dental crowns and veneers are both customized, lab-created restorations.
Dental crowns, or caps, cover the entire visible portion of the tooth. They can be made of different materials to fit nearly any budget, including porcelain, gold, and zirconia. They are typically two millimeters thick and sturdy enough to withstand daily forces (such as chewing foods).
Crafted from wafer-thin porcelain, veneers are about one millimeter in thickness. They are color-matched to the adjacent teeth for a seamless appearance. Dental porcelain is durable, and veneers can withstand normal chewing forces. But they are not invincible. Patients must care for veneers like natural teeth to decrease the likelihood of breakage.
Dental crowns and porcelain veneers are considered permanent treatments because they require some degree of tooth reduction and a special bonding agent to cement the restorations to the teeth. However, the crowns and veneers themselves won’t last forever.
Most dental crowns last for ten years but can last even longer with proper care. Veneers can last over 15 years.
Here are some practices that lengthen the lifespan of both crowns and veneers:
- Visit the dentist at least twice a year for dental exams and cleanings.
- Brush and floss teeth in the morning and at night. Reduce the risk of plaque and bad breath with a non-alcoholic oral rinse.
- Avoid unnecessary pressure on the teeth (such as using teeth as tools or consuming hard or sticky foods).
- Avoid acidic foods and alcohol (which can degrade the bonding agent).
If you are susceptible to bruxism (tooth grinding or clenching), ask our dentists for a mouth guard to protect the teeth and restorations during sleep, high-stress situations, and sports. Replacement is necessary for damaged crowns and veneers.
Create a Custom Smile Improvement Plan Today
Crowns are used primarily for restorative dentistry, and veneers only conceal cosmetic imperfections. At Garden City Smiles in Long Island, NY, Dr. Buono’s knowledgeable, patient-centered dental team can help you decide if crowns or veneers are suitable for your needs. Call (516) 294-0375 or message us online to schedule a first-time consultation.