What is the Difference Between Porcelain Veneers and Dental Bonding?

Porcelain veneers and dental bonding are two of the best ways to change the shape, color and size of your teeth, which then enhances the appearance of your smile. A veneer is a thin piece of porcelain placed in the whole front of the tooth. On the other hand, with bonding, a dentist applies a resin to the tooth to cover an imperfection. The option that is best for you will depend on your particular dental issue and your goals. Read on and find out which one it is.


Porcelain Veneers


Porcelain veneers help with discolored or broken teeth, as well as change irregularly shaped teeth. Veneers are as strong as natural tooth enamel and create a natural look. They are considered a non-removable treatment because the dentist will have to change the shape of your natural teeth before applying veneers.


Veneers are custom-designed to fit the patient, which are made after a thorough evaluation by the dentist. After a small amount of enamel is removed from the natural teeth, the dentist will apply a thin ceramic layer to create the veneer. The veneer is attached using a special adhesive, which is then cured using a special light.


Porcelain Veneers Pros


  • Veneers are custom-designed and give a natural look
  • Veneers are stain-resistant, so your teeth will stay white and bright
  • Veneers are durable and sturdy, designed to withstand the same amount of regular use as natural teeth for up to 15 years


Porcelain Veneers Cons


  • Veneers change the natural tooth and are non-reversible, making this a non-option for those who want to preserve their natural teeth
  • Veneers can be damaged by some activities; those who grind their teeth at night might need a nightguard
  • Veneers are durable and customized, so this option can be very expensive compared to other procedures like bonding


Dental Bonding


Dental bonding involves the application of a composite resin using adhesive and a special light. It is mostly to fix a part of a tooth. After conditioning the underlying tooth, the dentist will add a soft resin and shape it to match the rest of the tooth before it is hardened using high-intensity light. The whole bonding procedure can take less than an hour.


Many dentists would recommend dental bonding for patients looking for small repairs in their tooth, not those that require covering the whole tooth. This procedure is most useful in repairing chipped teeth, as well as covering discolored teeth, protecting the tooth root in receding gums, and changing the shape of irregular teeth.


Dental Bonding Pros


  • Bonding is much easier compared to other procedures, and do not involve much waiting outside a laboratory to complete it
  • Bonding involves little to no change to the natural tooth, so patients can keep their underlying natural teeth intact
  • Bonding is less costly compared to many other cosmetic dental procedures, and it is more accessible to more patients


Dental Bonding Cons


  • Bonding uses a material that is not as stain-resistant as porcelain, which also makes it more prone to chipping and even breaking
  • Bonding uses composite resin that does not last as long as porcelain, so it will have to be replaced more frequently


The mission of every dentist is to help their patients get the smile that they want in a way that fits their budget and needs. If you want to repair your smile, the best first step is to talk to your dentist. Generally, bonding is the best solution for small changes, while veneers are best for bigger corrections. Your dentist should help you make the call, and help you pick the best option that matches your smile goals.


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