If you are looking to visually improve your smile, porcelain vs composite resin veneers might be a question that you are asking yourself.
Both options involve placing a tooth-coloured shell over the front surface of your teeth while improving its shape and appearance.
So, how do you decide which option is best for you?
Our team has outlined what is involved in the treatments and the differences between the two.
Who are veneers for?
Veneers are a cosmetic treatment used to improve the appearance of your smile. They can cover teeth that are misshaped, discoloured or don’t match the surrounding teeth. Whether you get porcelain or composite resin veneers, both treatments have the same goal. Generally, you may require veneers if your teeth are:
- Darkened or discoloured
- Crooked or positioned unevenly
- Spaced out with gaps in between
- Stained or being eroded
What are composite veneers?
Composite resin veneers consist of composite resin. In fact, this is the same material used for most filling treatments to match your teeth.
There are two types of composite veneers.
Direct composite veneers
Direct composite veneers are a quick and efficient treatment as they can be made by your dentist in one appointment. For this treatment, your dentist will place composite resin directly onto your teeth and prepare your veneers in the same application.
Indirect composite veneers
Indirect composite veneers follow a similar process to direct composite veneers. However, your dentist will take the resin out of your mouth for further customisation. Your veneers may also be taken to a dental laboratory for further assessment. Therefore, you will need to attend a second appointment.
During your next visit, your dentist will complete your procedure by placing your indirect veneers onto your teeth with a layer of adhesive cement.
What are porcelain veneers?
Porcelain veneers are made from porcelain, which is a strong, tooth-coloured material. Out of this material, a thin shell is created and bonded to the front of your teeth.
They are also customised to suit the surrounding teeth in shape, size and colour.
Porcelain veneer treatment steps
For this procedure your dentist will firstly take impressions of your teeth. The impressions will be sent to a dental laboratory where your veneers will be manufactured.
Please note, this phase may take over a week to complete depending on your case. During this period, you may receive temporary veneers.
Once your veneers have been made, your dentist will cement them to the front of your teeth. Moreover, your dentist will shape the veneers to match your surrounding teeth to ascertain a natural look.
Porcelain vs composite veneers
Porcelain and composite veneers are both used to improve the aesthetic of your teeth. However, one of the main differences between the two is price.
Composite veneers are a cheaper treatment option than porcelain veneers as the material is less expensive and the procedure can be completed in one visit.
Compared to composite veneers, porcelain is far more resistant to chipping and staining. Therefore, your teeth will become more durable and last longer.
Porcelain veneers can also be custom made providing you with a more natural and aesthetic look. As a result, you are required to visit your dentist more than once to complete your procedure.
How long do they last?
If you are after a long-term fix, porcelain veneers are the suitable treatment option for you. If you maintain oral hygiene and visit your dentist regularly, Porcelain veneers can last between 10 to 15 years.
On the other hand, veneers made from composite resin will likely last 3 to 5 years. Composite veneers are less durable than porcelain. Therefore, you may need to replace them more often as they are subject to chipping and staining.
From a dentist’s perspective, it is generally recommended that you consult with your dentist first to ensure you are provided with the right treatment.