When a patient is looking for a drastic dental make over, dentist will often suggest dental crowns or veneers. Although they can often create an almost identical cosmetic result, the two procedures are very different from one another. The biggest difference is the application process and how much of the tooth each product covers. A crown encases the entire tooth, where as a veneer only covers the front of the tooth.

Crowns are thicker than veneers and because of this they require a lot of tooth trimming. When a dentist is preparing the tooth for a crown they have to reduce its size and shape to a tapered nub. This way when the crown is adhered on, it becomes the new outer surface of the tooth. Because of this, a crown can give a tooth not only a new color but also a completely new shape as well. Most crowns are about 2mm thick, however that can depend on the materials the dentist is using such as porcelain or metal or a combination of both.

Veneers on the other hand do not require extensive tooth grinding. Instead only a small layer of enamel is removed from the front of the tooth so that the veneer can fit in the mouth and adhere properly to the front of the tooth. Veneers are usually about 1mm thick or less. With veneers less of the healthy tooth structure is damaged, and the preparation process is less extensive.

A dentist will typically feel that a crown is a better option for a patient for several reasons.

  • Dental crowns can create significant shape changes for a tooth
  • They create large color changes
  • Because crowns are strong and durable they work well on teeth that exposed to heavy chewing and biting, or for people who grind their teeth
  • Crowns can rebuild and strengthen decaying teeth

A dentist will usually recommend veneers for more cosmetic reasons.

  • Veneers can produce slight to moderate color changes
  • Create minor shape changing
  • In some cases veneers are reversible
  • Veneers are often attached to healthy stronger teeth to give them a better appearance

Your dentist will help you decide whether crowns or veneers are the best option for you and which one will give you the desired result you are looking for. Are you interested in cosmetic dentistry? Call the cosmetic dentistry experts at Tempe Dental Care and schedule an appointment to see how your smile can benefit from one of our many cosmetic dentistry services.