Dental veneers and dental crowns are two popular dental procedures used to improve the appearance of damaged teeth. However, veneers are typically used for the upper front 6 to 8 teeth, while crowns can be used on both front and back teeth. Additionally, crowns are used not only to restore the appearance of a tooth but also its strength and functionality.
We offer both of these options at 5th and Olive Dental in Seattle. In this article, we’ll explain more about each one and compare the two to help you decide which one is right for you.
Approximately 26% of the cosmetic dental procedures performed are veneers. Dental veneers are thin layer of porcelain or composite resin that is permanently bonded to the front surface of a tooth to improve its appearance. Patients often choose veneers when their teeth are:
- Varying sizes
- Excessively spaced
In order to place the veneer, some of the enamel must be removed. Patients may choose to only get one veneer or several. In most cases, patients opt to get veneers on the upper 6 to 8 front teeth to create a perfect “Hollywood” smile. This is often used when patients want to correct an issue that dental bonding cannot.
The cost of veneers varies from around $400 per tooth for composite veneers to $2,500 per tooth for porcelain. Since this is a cosmetic treatment, most dental insurance providers will not cover it. Therefore, many people choose to try dental bonding first before investing in dental veneers.
Composite veneers can typically be done in one appointment, while porcelain typically requires two. The teeth will be prepared for veneer placement in the first appointment and the permanent veneers will be placed in the second. Some dental clinics are able to fabricate the veneers on-site, which means you can have your new smile in a single appointment.
Dental Veneer Procedure
Typically, veneers require at least two dental visits. However, some clinics offer same-day CEREC veneers, which is a 3D dental technology that creates ceramic veneers in the office. This eliminates the need for multiple visits. In addition, direct composite veneers can be done in one day because the dentist directly applies and shapes the resin to the teeth that are being treated.
All dental veneers require a consultation, during which the dentist will explain your options and the fees associated with them. In addition, a comprehensive exam will be performed including images. This will determine your candidacy for veneers. If you do qualify, we will move forward with choosing the appropriate shade for your veneers.
Then, the dentist will prepare your teeth by removing some of the enamel to create space for the veneers to sit on the teeth. We will administer local anesthesia to prevent any discomfort during this portion of the procedure. Once the enamel is removed, impressions will be taken of the teeth that are being treated. This will ensure that the veneers fit properly.
If you are getting traditional porcelain veneers, the impressions and images will be sent to the dental lab and temporary veneers will be placed on your teeth to protect them. In most cases, it takes 2 to 3 weeks for the lab to fabricate veneers and send them back to the clinic.
When your permanent veneers are ready, the dentist will check the fit and make adjustments if needed. Finally, the veneers will be permanently cemented in place.
Dental crowns are caps that are placed over a damaged tooth to restore both functionality and appearance. Since this is primarily a restorative procedure, most dental insurance providers will cover a portion of the treatment- unless the reasoning behind the procedure is simply to improve the appearance of the tooth. Dental crowns offer more advantages over traditional dental fillings, including offering more support to the weakened tooth.
Dental crowns are recommended for:
- Failed dental fillings
- Irregularly shaped teeth
- Worn-down teeth
- Significant discoloration
- Chipped/fractured teeth
- Root canal-treated teeth
Dental crowns may be porcelain, composite, metal, or porcelain-fused-with-metal. The type that you choose depends on several factors including your budget and the location of the tooth. For example, you may prefer a porcelain crown on a front tooth, since they look more natural compared to other options. If you have a molar that requires a crown, you may opt for porcelain-fused-to-metal or all-metal, since these are stronger than other types.
The cost of dental crowns ranges from around $900 to $3,500, depending on several factors including the location of the tooth, the material used to make the crown, the experience/expertise and location of the dentist, and a few others. Since this is primarily considered a restorative procedure, most dental insurance providers will cover a portion of the treatment.
Dental crowns typically require 2 or more visits. The first one is to prepare the tooth for the crown and the second one is to place the permanent crown. Some dental clinics offer CEREC crowns, which can be done in one day.
Dental Crown Procedure
Typically, dental crowns require multiple steps over several visits. Some clinics offer same-day crowns with CEREC technology. Here’s what you can expect your dental crown procedure to look like:
The first step is the initial consultation. During this visit, the dentist will perform an examination and determine the extent of the damage. If decay has reached the tooth pulp, you may need root canal treatment.
The dentist will start by administering local anesthesia to numb the area around the tooth being treated. Then, some of the enamel will be removed to create space for the crown to fit on the tooth. If a significant portion of the tooth is missing, a dental filling will be used to create a core for the crown to fit on.
Then, the dentist will create a mold or take digital impressions of your teeth so that the crown can be created to fit. If your crown is created by a dental lab, the dentist will place a temporary crown while you wait. Once your permanent crown is received by the clinic, an appointment will be scheduled for placement.
Comparing Dental Crowns vs Veneers
|Dental Crowns||Dental Veneers|
|Which teeth can be treated?||Any teeth can be treated with dental crowns||Typically, just the upper 6 to 8 teeth are visible when smiling|
|Cost||$900 to $3,500 depending on several factors- but dental insurance often covers a portion of the treatment||Starts at around $400 per tooth for composite and goes up to around $2,500 per tooth for porcelain- dental insurance typically does not cover any part of this treatment|
|Type of treatment||Restorative (restores functionality and appearance of a damaged tooth)||Cosmetic (restores the appearance of a damaged tooth)|
|How long does it take?||1 to 2 appointments||1 to 2 appointments|
Which teeth can be treated?
Any teeth can be treated with dental crowns
Typically, just the upper 6 to 8 teeth are visible when smiling
$900 to $3,500 depending on several factors- but dental insurance often covers a portion of the treatment
Starts at around $400 per tooth for composite and goes up to around $2,500 per tooth for porcelain- dental insurance typically does not cover any part of this treatment
Type of treatment
Restorative (restores functionality and appearance of a damaged tooth)
Cosmetic (restores the appearance of a damaged tooth)
How long does it take?
1 to 2 appointments
1 to 2 appointments
Schedule Your Consultation with 5th and Olive Dental Today
Research shows that approximately 40% of people do not show their teeth when they smile because they are ashamed of the way they look. If you are one of these, schedule your consultation with the team at 5th and Olive Dental today. You can schedule your appointment by calling the office at (206) 567-7402 or by visiting the website. You can make the initial visit smoother by downloading the new patient forms and filling them out before you come in.
We will start by evaluating your current condition and discussing your concerns as well as your expectations for treatment. Then, we can explain your options for resolving your issues such as dental veneers or dental crowns. Once we’ve created a treatment plan, we’ll get started transforming your smile. In a few weeks, you’ll have a beautiful smile that you can be proud of.
In addition to cosmetic dentistry, we have the experience and training to provide a variety of dental services for your entire family. We are dedicated to supporting the oral health of all of our patients from pediatrics to seniors.