To catch you up to speed, dental veneers are teeth-mimicking shells. Purely cosmetic, these pristine beauties boost your teeth’ overall appearance—in terms of color and shape; size and length. They attach to the front of your teeth and are affixed surgically—local anesthetic often required.
The surgery can also cost a pretty penny—usually out-of-pocket, as private health insurance rarely covers cosmetic procedures.
If your teeth are crooked, chipped, discolored, or smaller than average, then perhaps you should consider dental veneers. There are two types of veneers: composite resin veneers and porcelain or ceramic veneers.
Learn more about the costs involved, the procedure itself, and the results at the other end.
In Australia, composite veneers are $400 to $800 each, whilst the porcelain counterparts are in the ballpark of $1,600 to $2,500. Which veneers will suit your budget?
If you’re shopping for dental veneers, you should consider investing in quality, too. For a permanent cosmetic solution, it may be worthwhile forking over extra dough for high-quality porcelain veneers.
Forking over money may be jarring, but think of it as an investment in quality.
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Composite veneers do not last like their porcelain cousins, averaging a lifespan of four to eight years. They’re also higher maintenance and more vulnerable to chipping.
Porcelain veneers, however, can last between 10 to 15 years and don’t require much (if any) maintenance once attached. Porcelain veneers may not be easy on the purse strings, but the extra cost buys commendable durability.
Say what you want about their lifespan, but composite veneers are certainly the easiest to install. In fact, your dentist can install them in a single dental appointment. The process is as follows:
- Step one: your dentist will locate resin best resonating with your teeth’ complexion.
- Step two: your dentist will apply the chosen resin to your teeth, and finish the job with curing and polishing.
Porcelain veneers, however, require a minimum of two appointments. Have you purchased prescription orthotics before? If so, the first step is the same—only, instead of a podiatrist making a mold of your feet, a dentist will create an impression of your teeth.
Your dentist will then send your unique imprint to a lab. In appointment number two, your dentist will attach the customized veneers to your teeth—and voilà! You have a smile tailor-made for your face.
Composite veneers are something of a shortcut. Porcelain veneers take time due to their unique customization to your teeth’ shape.
If you’re choosing composite veneers, the dentist will locate resin that best resonates with your teeth’ complexion.
Both veneer types look good. However, when it comes to aesthetic quality, porcelain outshines composite resin: no contest. Porcelain is a stain-resistant material, giving it an advantage over composite resin—and even natural teeth.
Speaking of which, its resemblance to natural teeth is second to none, as it catches the light in the same way. The only drawback? Porcelain veneers are irreversible. You can always change your composite veneers if you find they’re not sitting with your smile.
Which ones are the fake ones?
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Building on the above, it’s important to note how permanent porcelain veneers are. If you’ve opted for this option, you’ve also committed to a lifetime of mouth-based maintenance.
Though they last between 10–15 years—or longer, in some cases—you will need to cough up for fresh porcelain veneers as they wear and tear. This is the largest difference between the two veneer types: porcelain is permanent; composite resin is temporary.
Throughout surgery, your dentist will reduce and reshape your teeth’ enamel. Without this step, your mouth could look clunky or crowded. The catch is that the tooth enamel can never grow back again. So be sure this is what you want!
If you were only wanting veneers to hide some light yellowing, you may want to research less permanent options. Alternatively, you could try a different path entirely, such as professional teeth whitening.