Posted on: 12 September 2016Share
Cosmetic dentistry procedures are different than orthodontic procedures; an orthodontist is concerned with the overall shape of the jaw and mouth, whereas a cosmetic dentist is concerned just with the appearance of teeth and your smile. However, a cosmetic dentist can sometimes actually protect the health of your teeth and mouth, including adding veneers over your teeth. Note some important factors about veneers so you can know if they're the right choice for you.
What is the difference between bonding and veneers?
Veneers usually refers to porcelain veneers, which may come in a solid piece that is glued over the front of the teeth. This can make a tooth look larger, straighter, or even whiter. The veneer also protects the tooth over which it's glued; it might cover a hairline chip or crack in the tooth or keep it from eroding due to enamel loss.
Bonding refers to a putty substance that is dabbed onto the tooth and then shaped and formed. It then hardens in place. Bonding can also improve the appearance of teeth, but note that the quality of bonding relies more on the dentist applying it, since he or she will need to shape it to look like a real tooth. Bonding may also be less strong than veneers simply because of the material that is used. While both have their advantages, veneers can sometimes look better and last longer overall.
How long do veneers last?
Quality veneers can last for many years if not decades, but they may not be permanent. This is because they may eventually wear down or the glue holding them in place may get compromised. An impact that would chip or crack a natural tooth is also going to damage a veneer. Only your dentist can tell you how long veneers should last, but note that their longevity is often worth the cost, as it may be many years before you need to have one replaced or repaired.
Does it hurt to get veneers applied?
When you have caps or crowns applied, you may need to get your natural tooth drilled down to accommodate the cap, and this might be painful or uncomfortable. With veneers, you rarely need to have this done as the veneer is glued over the front of the tooth, not put over the entire tooth itself. While some removal of the tooth surface may be involved in the application of certain veneers, this is usually minimal so that the discomfort of any drilling is also minimal.