Porcelain vs Composite Veneers: Unveiling the Best Material for Your Dream Smile
Whether you’re looking to have only a few teeth or all of your front teeth covered by dental veneers you might be wondering; which material is the best, composite or porcelain? Dental veneers can be used alongside other cosmetic dental procedures to dramatically change the look of your smile. It’s an important question, so let’s dive in.
How Long Will Your Smile Last?
The lifespan of any type of dental veneer depends upon several factors. The most important of those is hygiene and overall oral health. Under ideal conditions, if a patient follows brushing, flossing, and twice annual dental checkup recommendations, both porcelain and composite veneers can last for many years. A common estimate for the lifespan of composite veneers is between 4 to 10 years. Porcelain veneers are estimated to last between 10 to 15 years if not longer.
- Porcelain: A Legacy of Longevity (10-15+ Years). Porcelain is generally fragile but after it is bonded to a tooth it becomes extremely durable.
- Composite: A Shorter, Repair-Friendly Journey (4-10 Years). Composite materials are strong as well but once attached are more prone to chipping than porcelain. However composite veneers can be repaired, similar to fillings for normal tooth enamel, while porcelain veneers must be replaced entirely if they are damaged.
Speed vs. Precision in Veneer Application
- Composite: In-and-Out Convenience (One Appointment). Composite veneers have the advantage of a faster application process compared to porcelain. Composite veneers can be fabricated in the office and can be applied during the same visit in which your teeth are prepped for them. Any dental veneers require some tooth material to be ground away to make room for them. With composite veneers, your dentist can complete that work, fabricate your veneers, and apply them all in the same visit.
- Porcelain: Two appointments for unmatched craftsmanship. Porcelain veneers generally require at least two appointments. Your dentist will remove the necessary material from your teeth, take an impression mold, and then will have to wait for a special lab to fabricate your veneers. Temporary veneers are available between appointments, so it’s not like you will walk around with obviously incomplete dental work, but if time is a factor this is worth considering. At your second appointment, your porcelain veneers will then be applied.
Porcelain veneers are also generally more expensive than composite. Because porcelain veneers cannot be fabricated in-office and are of a higher quality material they cost more to create and apply. The initial cost of porcelain veneers compared to composite often becomes equal over time however when considering the upfront costs versus repair and replacement costs over the lifetime of each material.
Achieving the Most Natural-Looking Smile
- Light-mimicking perfection for unmatched appearance. Porcelain veneers compared to composite veneers look more natural. The way that thin porcelain catches light mirrors a white tooth very closely.
- A natural choice, with staining considerations. Composite veneers still look quite natural but when considering cosmetics porcelain does have the edge. Porcelain is also more stain resistant, related to its general durability edge, compared to composite. Because composite veneers can stain that does mean they will naturally wear and change color just like your other teeth. Porcelain veneers on the other hand may start to stick out more over time compared to the teeth surrounding them. This might me you will need to consider whitening your teeth to match the shade of your porcelain veneers as time goes on.
Which Dental Veneers Are Best?
There are pros and cons to both composite and dental veneers. The best material for your veneers is ultimately something you will need to decide for yourself based on your lifestyle and preferences. There’s a question of lifespan, upfront versus lifetime costs, look, and time to consider when deciding between the two. If you’re still not sure, our dentists and staff are happy to help guide you through the decision-making process. There’s yet more information that can be provided to you and guidance that can be tailored to your specific needs and unique oral health situation.
Halloween can seem like a kid’s ultimate daydream. But for their dental health, it can actually be their greatest nightmare. Just because Halloween has the potential to be bad for teeth doesn’t mean you should only let your children eat apples and carrots.
That doesn’t mean that all candies are the same. There are certain candies that you need to pay a little extra attention to this Halloween season.
One of the best candies you can let your child eat is chocolate. Because it is soft, it easily dissolves off of the teeth after eating, which minimizes the risk of developing cavities.
Another good candy for your dental health are certain kinds of gum. Chewing gum after eating greatly reduces the risk of developing cavities. It can help clean the mouth out and promote the production of saliva, a natural cavity fighter. The best gum to chew is anything that is sugar-free.
The “Be Mindful” Zone
Certain candies are worse for teeth than others. Anything that is sticky can linger on the teeth longer, allowing bacteria to grow and create cavities. It can also pull out any fillings in the teeth, causing painful and potentially deeper cavities.
Hard candy can chip or crack teeth if you try to chew them. Make sure that your child sucks on hard candy, rather than biting it. A lot of hard candies can be sour, which tend to be very acidic and damaging to teeth.
Lastly, one of the greatest classic Halloween treats is the popcorn ball. While delicious, the kernels can become lodged in between teeth and into the gums. This creates areas where bacteria can flourish and eat away at the teeth.
Your Dental Saviors
At the end of the day, there is no particular candy that you should go out of your way to avoid. All candies have the potential to cause damage to the teeth. If you are mindful about what you are consuming and how you are consuming it, you will be just fine. It is important that you floss once a day and brush twice per day. Mouth rinses can also be beneficial after eating.
Happy Halloween and good luck Trick-or-Treating!