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Veneers and Bonding FAQ
Veneers and dental bonding are both great ways to improve your smile using cosmetic dentistry, but few people know the difference between them. Below you will find the questions most commonly associated with these procedures. If you still have questions, our doctors are always here to help!
What are dental veneers?
Dental veneers are a great solution to the aesthetic beauty of your smile while avoiding sometimes painful orthodontic procedures. They are thin, customized porcelain “shells” that attach to your teeth and match the surrounding teeth. In most cases, you improve the alignment, color, and any other cracks or chips in your teeth in only a matter of two appointments. Teeth can also appear less crooked once a permanent veneer is placed, improving the overall look of your smile.
What is composite dental bonding?
Dental bonding is also a great solution to improving the appearance of your smile while repairing cracked teeth, reducing gaps, and hiding tooth discoloration. It is a procedure in which resin material that matches your tooth color is bonded to the outer surface of your tooth.
What is the difference between veneers and bonding?
While both veneers and bonding improve your smile, they have differences in materials, methods, and cost. But the quick answer is that bonding involves putting a tooth-like resin onto your teeth to change the shape or to build it up. Veneers, on the other hand, involve putting a porcelain shell entirely over the tooth’s surface, effectively becoming part of the tooth.
Should I choose composite bonding or porcelain veneers?
We would always recommend that you ask your dentist which option is right for you. However, here are some quick facts to prepare you for that discussion with the dentist:
- Dental Bonding might be ideal if:
- The changes you want are minor and the teeth otherwise function normally.
- You need a less expensive solution for your cosmetic dental needs.
- You would like to have the procedure be quick and only involve one visit instead of multiple.
- You’re committed to still taking good care of your teeth as normal, and remain avoiding teeth-staining food and drink, as bonding tends to still stain.
- Veneers might be ideal if:
- Your teeth are exceedingly broken, crooked, or stained.
- You clench or grind your teeth often.
- You require a more durable solution to your cosmetic dental needs.
- You’re able to come to the office for more than one visit to have the procedure done.
- You’re committed to taking care of your veneers just like your other teeth.
Also, for more information, take a look at our blog post “Dental Veneers or Bonding: What is Right for Me?”
How do I care for my veneers?
Luckily, since the veneers are strong, durable and essentially apart of your teeth, you just need to treat them as such! You should still brush and floss daily– you don’t need to be afraid of brushing them either. Any non-abrasive toothpaste will work. Let your dentist know if you grind your teeth, as he or she might create a bite guard for you to protect your veneers for as long as possible. Finally, we recommend regular dental checkups for the overall health of your teeth and veneers.
How long will porcelain veneers last?
Porcelain veneers usually last around 10-15 years with some people having them for as long as 20! The differences in time depend on certain things that can affect the veneer. For example, the porcelain may be non-living, but your teeth and gums certainly are living and growing! This sometimes results in outgrowing, revealing the root surface. Also, sometimes outward circumstances occur and chips happen or the veneer comes off. When these things happen, you can normally rebond it to the tooth. Overall, with proper care, you can expect to have your veneers for years to come!
What is involved in a veneer procedure?
Generally, the dentist follows these steps
1) He or she will grind down about half of a millimeter from your tooth enamel. This is done because when you get the veneer placed, the thickness won’t feel as drastic and you mostly won’t be able to tell it is there.
2) The dentist takes a mold of your newly grinded teeth to send to a lab that creates the veneers. This typically takes about one or two weeks to make.
3) After the veneers are ready, you will schedule an appointment with your dentist to place them on your teeth.
4) Before the placement process, he or she will first check the fit and the color of the veneer to see if they match.
5) The dentist prepares your teeth by first cleaning them. Then he or she will typically numb your mouth for the remainder of the process. Finally, the dentist will gently roughen the surface of your tooth in order to improve the adhesion of your veneer.
6) While attaching the veneer, a special cement is used for adhesion of the veneer to your tooth. Then ultraviolet light rapidly hardens it.
7) The process is repeated for however many teeth are getting veneers.
8) Your dentist may want to schedule a follow up appointment to see if they are properly placed or if there are any problems.
How much do veneers cost?
It depends. There are several elements that go into the veneer process, including how many veneers you are getting, the cost of the x-rays and wax model, whether or not you need a bite guard, etc. The fees can perhaps range from $900 and even over $2,000.
Does dental insurance cover porcelain veneers?
That depends on your insurance company and their regulations. If this is for cosmetic purposes, you can expect to pay the full amount. Some insurance carriers may cover up to 50% if they deem it customary.
Dental Bonding FAQ
How long does dental bonding last?
Usually around seven or more years. The length of time dental bonding lasts depends on how well you maintain their health and schedule checkups regularly. If there is any wearing down, you might want to schedule an appointment to touch them up.
How do I care for dental bonding?
Dental bonding can stain just like your teeth, so you want to care for them as carefully as you care for your smile! Brush and floss regularly and visit your dentist for checkups at least twice a year. Avoid biting into hard surfaces like ice, pens, fingernails, and other hard foods which can weaken the bonding.
What happens during the dental bonding procedure?
Generally, dental bonding follows these steps:
1) If you feel dental bonding might be right for you, schedule a consultation and talk it over with your dentist.
2) if you’re prepared, you may be able to jump right in. The dentist chooses a shade of resin that most closely matches the color of your teeth.
3) Once the color is chosen from the shade guide, the dentist will lightly etch your tooth to roughen it. Then, it is lightly coated with a liquid that conditions it and helps bond the resin to your tooth.
4) When your tooth is ready, the dentist can apply a putty-like substance, molding and smoothing it onto the surface.
5) Once resin is properly shaped, then it is hardened with an ultraviolet light.
6) After hardening, the dentist may take even further steps to shape it in order to match the other teeth.
7) The process is repeated for however many teeth need dental bonding.
8) Your dentist may want to schedule a follow up appointment to see if there are any problems
How much does dental bonding cost?
It depends. But usually you might expect the procedure to be about $100 to $400. This depends on many factors, including how many teeth you wish to treat, the size of the treatment area (for example, a tiny chip vs. covering the entire tooth) and how much your dentist charges.
Does insurance cover dental bonding?
Much like other cosmetic dental procedures, it’s not always covered by insurance. However, if you are using the resin to treat some damages, the insurance company might cover a portion of the cost of treatment.
Contact us if you have any more questions about these procedures and which is right for you!
4220 N. Rodney Parham Rd., Suite 200
Little Rock, AR 72212
Phone: (501) 954-9900