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Dental Bonding or Porcelain Veneers, Which Should I Choose?

Posted in Dental Bonding, Porcelain Veneers

4 minute read

You may be considering composite or porcelain veneers for one or more reasons, as these cosmetic dental treatments can improve your smile in many ways.

A woman's smile before and after veneers.

Dental bonding, otherwise known as composite veneers and their porcelain counterparts, provide dramatic results and can easily transform a smile from fair to fabulous in as little as one day. 

What’s the Difference Between Porcelain and Composite Veneers?

Before going into detail about the differences between your dental veneer options, let’s take a look at what’s similar. 

Bonding and porcelain veneers address the following cosmetic issues:

  • Deeply discolored teeth
  • Teeth with minor cracks
  • Worn down or small teeth
  • Teeth with chips 
  • Mildly misaligned teeth

However, one option may be better than the other, depending on your goals.

Porcelain Veneers 

These wafer-thin but strong porcelain shells are custom-made and color-matched to your smile. After the teeth are reshaped to accommodate these restorations, a precise dental impression is made and sent to the lab, where your veneers are crafted to fit perfectly over your prepared natural teeth. 

Dental Bonding 

Composite veneers involve a different process in which preparation is still required, but instead of creating a prosthetic, a composite resin is applied directly to the front of the teeth. This material hardens and is shaped to mimic the enamel of straight, intact teeth that blend seamlessly with the rest of your smile.

Composite Bonding and Porcelain Veneers – Weighing the Pros and Cons

Taking a closer look at a few factors may help you determine which cosmetic treatment is suitable for you.

  • Aesthetics: Porcelain veneers and bonding are both designed to blend in nicely with the rest of your smile. Porcelain provides a slightly more natural, translucent appearance than composite resin, which is closer to opaque.
  • Stain resistance: Porcelain veneers resist stains, while over time, the material used with bonding may darken if exposed to dark liquids or smoking. 
  • Durability: Porcelain veneers are known for their longevity and can last up to 25 years. However, your veneers must be well-cared for and your teeth not used for anything other than eating and smiling. 

Dental bonding can last between three and 10 years, depending on the quality and the care they receive. 

  • Convenience: Composite veneers can often be completed in one office visit, while porcelain veneers typically involve two appointments.
  • Cosmetic dental goals: If you have several dental flaws, including discoloration, porcelain veneers are versatile and long-lasting. For one or two chips in your teeth or minor gaps, bonding is an excellent and economical solution. You can even combine dental bonding, porcelain veneers, and professional teeth whitening if your dentist recommends this approach as an appropriate and cost-effective approach.
  • Cost: Because porcelain veneers are virtually permanent, it shouldn’t be surprising that they cost more than dental bonding.

Dental Veneer Tips

It’s vital to choose a highly skilled cosmetic dentist who is experienced with both smile restoration methods to help ensure the best and longest-lasting results.

If you are using veneers or bonding to treat structural damage but would also like a brighter smile, consider first undergoing professional teeth-whitening so that your restoration(s) can be color-matched to your brighter smile. 

If you suffer from bruxism (tooth-grinding), address this before receiving veneers or bonding, as you may damage your restored teeth.

Using teeth to open bottles or containers is strongly discouraged and will inevitably lead to broken veneers and natural teeth.

Star-Quality Dental Veneers in Beverly Hills, CA

Dr. Kevin Sands is known as Beverly Hills cosmetic dentist to the stars and welcomes you to schedule a visit to see how he can help you improve or completely transform your smile with porcelain veneers or bonding. Call our office today at (310) 273-0111.