May 19

A Closer Look at Porcelain Veneers vs. Dental Bonding

Porcelain Veneers vs. Dental Bonding

by Bruno Lemay, D.M.D.

A smiling woman with beautiful teethMajor or even minor dental issues can make the smile look less than perfect and impact a person's confidence. Cosmetic dentistry treatments can help those who feel insecure about their smile achieve a beautiful, flawless smile they'll want to show off. Although there are a variety of cosmetic dentistry treatments available, today we will take a closer look at porcelain veneers versus dental bonding. If you live in or around Rancho Mirage, CA, Palm Springs, CA, or Palm Desert, CA and would like more information about cosmetic dentistry treatments, please schedule a consultation with Dr. Bruno Lemay.

What Are Porcelain Veneers?

Porcelain veneers are thin, tooth-shaped shells that cover the front surface of the teeth to mask dental flaws and minor dental damage. Porcelain veneers may be used to correct many cosmetic issues, such as tooth shape, size, and color, as well as close gaps between the teeth and treat minor chips. Veneers may also be used to correct mild alignment issues, which is why they are sometimes referred to as “instant orthodontics.”

The Treatment Process for Porcelain Veneers

Porcelain veneer treatment generally requires two dental appointments to complete. During the first appointment, the teeth are prepared by removing a thin layer of the enamel. Next, impressions are taken of the teeth and sent to a dental lab where the veneers will be custom made. Temporary veneers will be placed in the interim. Once the finished veneers are ready, a second appointment will be necessary to remove the temporary veneers and bond the finished veneers to the teeth with dental cement. Treatment is completed with a final polish. 

What Is Dental Bonding?

Like porcelain veneers, dental bonding treatment may be used to correct dental flaws and minor dental damage. Rather than using a tooth-shaped porcelain shell, dental bonding treatment is completed using a soft, putty-like resin. Similar to porcelain veneers treatment, dental bonding may be used to adjust the size, shape, and color of the teeth as well as close gaps and treat chips.

The Treatment Process for Dental Bonding

Dental bonding treatment may be completed in a single dental visit, unlike porcelain veneers treatment. During dental bonding treatment, no enamel needs to be removed and instead the teeth are prepared by brushing on a special solution. This solution makes the teeth porous, or slightly rough, which helps the bonding resin adhere to the teeth.

Once the teeth are ready, the soft resin is directly applied to the teeth where it is then shaped to the desired size and appearance. Once the desired look is achieved, a special light or heat will be applied to the treated teeth to harden the bonding resin. The hardened resin is then finely shaped and polished to complete treatment.

The Benefits and Disadvantages of Porcelain Veneers and Dental Bonding 

Porcelain veneers and dental bonding can be used to treat similar issues and provide similar results, but each has its own benefits and disadvantages. Porcelain veneers are more durable than dental bonding treatment, providing longer lasting results. The downside of porcelain veneers is that a layer of enamel must be removed from the teeth, making this treatment irreversible. Dental bonding treatment can be completed in a single dental visit, unlike porcelain veneers, but may require replacement sooner than veneers.

Schedule a Consultation

If you are interested in dental bonding and porcelain veneers but are unsure which treatment is right for you, we encourage you to schedule a consultation with Dr. Lemay.

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