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Composite Bonding Vs Veneers

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Last Reviewed 12 March 2024

Medically reviewed by Dr. Niall Vallely, Bachelor Dent. Sc. (Trinity College Dublin) 2003, Cosmetic Dentist

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If you're dreaming of a perfect smile and wondering which path to take - composite bonding vs veneers, you're in the right place.

In this comprehensive guide, we'll break down everything you need to know about these two popular smile-enhancing options. We'll dive into the basics, compare their benefits, and help you understand which choice might be the best for your smile goals.

Whether you're looking to fix a tiny chip or transform your smile completely, we've got you covered with simple explanations and helpful insights. Get ready to make an informed decision and take the first step toward the smile you've always wanted!

Understanding Composite Bonding

Regardless of whether you brush your teeth twice daily, floss and attend dental checkups, your natural teeth might be crooked or have gaps. Composite bonding is a cost-effective treatment that deals with various aesthetic issues.

Dentists use a resin material that replicates the colour of your teeth and apply it to your tooth's surface. Once they form it to the desired shape, your dentist will use a special light to harden the composite, resulting in a smooth finish.

It (composite bonding) is a very good option for fixing chipped, fractured or discoloured teeth, to close small gaps or to improve the general appearance of your smile.  Dr. Niall Vallely

Dental bonding can be a beneficial treatment if you have minor gaps or chips. It's also a hassle-free process, with most treatments taking between 60 and 120 minutes. Some dentists will recommend edge bonding, which goes on the edges of the teeth instead of over the entire tooth.

Advantages Of Composite Bonding

1. It's minimally invasive: The composite resin doesn't cause any pain, and your dentist won't need to give you an injection, do any tooth preparation, or perform any drilling or other extensive work that can cause pain.

2. The affordable solution: While composite bonding does require an initial investment, it's one of the most affordable cosmetic dentistry procedures. If you want excellent results, composite material is a great solution - without depleting your finances.

Composite Bonding - before - 3Dental

Rickie (Click to enlarge)

Dental Cosmetic Bonding

3. It's quick: As mentioned, most composite bonding treatments are performed over one appointment, making them convenient for people who don't want to spend ages in the dental chair.

4. Great results: People with gaps, and crooked and chipped teeth can witness impressive results from composite bonding.

Dental Cosmetic Bonding Limitations And Considerations

1. They don't last forever: Generally, composite veneers can last three to ten years with proper care and maintenance. However, you will need touch-ups to maintain their appeal.

2. Discolouration can occur: Composite material can lose its colour over time, resulting in yellowing or fading. In most cases, however, brushing regularly and maintaining oral hygiene will preserve their aesthetic appeal.

3. They can't treat severe issues: Most people have composite bonding for minor cosmetic issues, but large gaps or severe misalignment might require orthodontic treatment.

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Exploring Veneers

In some cases, a dentist might refer to composite bonding as composite veneers, but they're essentially the same treatments. Porcelain veneers are different in material, composition, and properties. They're made from porcelain shells that go onto the front teeth.

When preparing for porcelain veneers, your dentist will remove a small amount of tooth enamel and then get impressions of your teeth, helping them to create custom veneers.

Once they're ready, specialists use dental cement on the back of the veneers, helping them bond to your teeth. With help from a special light, the veneers will stay in place.

People with larger gaps and misshapen teeth can benefit from porcelain veneers, and the cosmetic procedure is renowned for its results.

Benefits Of Porcelain Veneers

Porcelain Veneers Before
Porcelain Veneers After

Porcelain Veneers Before and After

Porcelain Veneers

1. They're a long-term solution: With proper care, veneers can last up to 15 years, making them one of the more durable cosmetic dentistry options.

2. Stain resistance: Porcelain can mimic the appearance of natural teeth, and the veneers are highly stain-resistant with proper care.

3. Impressive results: Veneers can cover multiple teeth, hiding the imperfections of each underlying tooth, resulting in a uniform smile. Their ability to transform smiles is what makes them so popular.

4. They're bespoke: Each porcelain veneer is custom-made for the tooth, which ensures a personalised approach and better treatment outcomes.

Porcelain Veneers Limitations

1. Cost: Porcelain veneers are one of the more costly cosmetic procedures and might not be accessible to people on limited budgets.

2. It's an irreversible procedure: As your dentist will take enamel from the tooth surface, veneers are a permanent treatment. Once they wear down, you will need replacements.

3. Longer treatment process: As the dentist takes impressions of the teeth and makes custom veneers, you might need to wait a few weeks before they're ready.

Are Veneers Right For You?

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Composite Bonding Vs Veneers: Which Form Of Cosmetic Dentistry Is Best For My Needs?

Numerous factors will come into play when choosing between cosmetic bonding or veneers. There's no right or wrong answer because each treatment has distinct benefits and drawbacks. However, we compared the two so you can make an informed decision:

Cosmetic BondingCovers minor gaps and crooked teeth. Similar to your natural teeth.Can last between three to ten years with regular maintenance.Requires regular brushing and flossing. Avoid drinks and foods that can stain the teeth.Between €175 and €300 per tooth.
Porcelain VeneersCovers larger gaps, chips and alignment issues. Designed bespoke to match the colour of your natural teeth.Can last up to 15 years with care and maintenance.Requires regular brushing and flossing. Avoid hard foods and things that can stain the teeth.Between €550 and €700 per tooth.

Things To Ask yourself Before Choosing

Which Treatment Will Best Suit My Dental Issues?

While composite bonding offers many benefits, individuals with severe issues, including significant gaps or chips, might find veneers provide the best results.

How Long Am I Willing To Wait?

The composite bonding procedure takes place over one session, but you'll wait a few weeks for veneers.

What Results Do I Want?

Many people are happy with cosmetic or dental bonding, which offers impressive results. However, porcelain veneers are tailored to your natural teeth, giving them a slight edge in terms of results.

How Much Am I Willing To Spend?

It's no secret that porcelain veneers cost a little more than composite bonding, but that doesn't necessarily mean they're best for your needs. Remember, composite bonding veneers require touch-ups to maintain appeal, while you'll need to replace porcelain veneers.

Tips For Effective Maintenance And Care Post-treatment

Regular maintenance and care ensure your veneers and composite bonding treatment last longer and keep your smile looking fresh. Following these tips means you can enjoy the results and avoid touch-ups.

  • Don't bite on hard objects or chew crunchy and sticky foods.
  • Refrain - or cut down - on coffee, wine, and other beverages resulting in discoloured teeth. Nicotine products can also cause yellowing.
  • Brush and floss twice a day with a soft-bristle toothbrush.
  • Be sure to attend each dental checkup, as your dental practice will be able to check for any issues and offer advice.
  • If teeth grinding is a problem, wear a mouthguard at night to prevent the veneers and composite bonding from wearing.
  • Invest in professional teeth cleanings to ensure there's no plaque. This will also prevent stained teeth.
shannon dolan - dental nurse

Final Thoughts

Whether you choose veneers or composite bonding, it's important to be happy with your decision.

Consulting with a cosmetic dentist gives you access to a range of treatments that will offer your desired results.  

We offer free consultations and payment plans for your convenience. Book your free consultation today! We look forward to welcoming you in person soon :)

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