Teeth Bonding Vs Veneers

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Teeth bonding vs veneers – what are the strenghts of each of these cosmetic dentistry procedures, what are the potential drawbacks, and which one should you ultimately choose?

If you have discolored teeth, or if your teeth are either gapped or slightly crooked, getting dental veneers or bonding can often be the minimally invasive procedure you need to achieve a smile makeover.

Both dental bonding and porcelain veneers are most commonly used to treat minor imperfections in teeth. For this reason, bot hare generally considered cosmetic dental services, though either procedure might also help to protect and improve gapped, chipped or damaged teeth. 

In this article, we are going to describe the similarites, the differences, the pros and the cons of both dental bonding and dental veneers. By the time you have read all the way through to the end, you should have a much clearer idea of which procedure is going to be the right choice for you.

Dental bonding

Dental bonding is a very simple dental procedure with a wide range of applications. 

For this procedure, the general or cosmetic dentist will simply add tooth colored resin to your teeth as needed in order to cover up imperfections and weaknesses in the tooth. 

Dental bonding may be performed for either purely aesthetic or practical purposes. For example, dental bonding may be used to bulk out gapped teeth, in order to minimize the gaps between them. This can improve both the appearance of the teeth, and have a positive impact on the patient’s overall oral health.

Cosmetic bonding may also be used to reshape natural teeth. An example of this would be if the patient’s teeth have uneven edges. In this case, dental bonding can provide a simple solution by evening out the tooth’s surface. 

Tooth bonding can also be used to improve discolored teeth, cover exposed and sensitve tooth roots, fill cavities, and strengtehn and repair worn, cracked or chipped teeth.

Teeth bonding material tends to last anywhere from 3 years to a full decade, so you should expect the dental bonding resin to require replacement at least once every 10 years.

Bonding pros

One of the main advantages to dental bonding is that it is a very minimally invasive procedure.

And because of this, dental bonding is both pain free and inexpensive. If you want to learn more about the cost of dental bonding and the factors that can make it fluctuate, read our guide to dental bondig cost here.

Dental bonding is a very versatile cosmetic procedure and can be used to correct a great number of different cosmetic and practical dental issues, including tooth discoloration, gap teeth, tooth enamel erosion, exposd tooth roots, and minor cracks and chips in the teeth.

Bonding cons

The main downside to dental bonding is that it has its limitations, meaning it is only a vitable procedure if the dental issue you are looking to address or correct is minor.

Another con is that bonding doesn’t last as well as veneers. While dental bonding resin can last up to a decade, it can also get worn away or fall of in as little as 3 years.

Porcelain veneers 

Porcelain veneers are thin shells of porcelain (or, in some cases, composite bonding) that are bonded to the front surface of tooth. Getting veneers is a relatvely simple cosmetic procedure, but requires more time in the dentist’s chair than dental bonding.

Veneers can be used to correct the issues that dental bonding can also address, including discolored teeth, chipped, worn and cracked teeth, and gapped teeth.

Depending on what material they are made of, veneers can last anywhere from 5 to 15 years. There is no doubt that you should chosoe porcelain veneers over the composite resin variety, as they tend to last much longer (10-15 years instead of 5-7), and also have a much more tooth-like appearance.

Veneer pros 

Veneers, and specifically porcelain veneers, are extremely natural-looking. In other words, mosrt people will be unable to tell the difference between your veneer-covered teeth and your natural teeth.

Veneers can completely transform the appearnce of teeth that have sustained significant wear, damage or discoloration. 

Porcelain veneers are long-lasting, and you can reasonably expect to get at least a decade out of them before they will have to be replaced.

Veneer cons

On the downside, veneers are significantly more expensive than dental bonding. The cost of veneers can fluctuate, but it usually ranges between $925 – $2,500 per tooth.

Veneers have one signficant limitation, and that’s that they can only be attached to the front teeth.

Frequently asked questions about teeth bonding vs dental veneers

Is it better to get bonding or veneers?

Whether you should choose dental bonding or veneers depends on what the issue is you are seeking treatment for.

In cases where the problem you want to treat is very minor, bonding is often the minimally viable option. Bonding is the simples of the two procedures, and can be used to treat discolored teeth, fill gaps between front teeth, cover teeth roots that have become exposed as a result of receding gums, as well as repair minor chips and cracks in natural teeth.

If, however, the issue you are wanting to address requires more extensive treatment, most cosmetic dentists would recommend porcelin veneers instead. Whereas bonding has its limitaitons in terms of how much surface area it can cover, veneers cover the fronts of front teeth completely. In other words, porcelain veneers are a fantstic option if you have severely discolored teeth or badly worn or damaged teeth.

As a besides, veneers are only used on the front teeth, so there are cases where you will not have the option of getting veneers. If you want to improve any of the teeth further back in your mouth, dental bonding or perhaps crowns are needed instead.

Does bonding look more natural than veneers?

No. In fact, veneers are more natural looking than tooth bonding. 

The simple explanation for this is that porcelain veneers are slightly translucent, which gives them a much more tooth-like appearance than the tooth-colored resin used in dental bonding. 

Is bonding cheaper than veneers?

Yes, bonding is significantly cheaper than veneers.

Veneers are usually made of porcelain and are custom-made to fit your teeth perfectly. Much more time, skill and effort goes into veneers than bonding, so it is easy to understand why they’re more costly. 

Is bonding your teeth a good idea?

Bonding can be a great choice if your teeth have any of the minor imperfections or weakness that dental bonding can correct.

Dental bonding can be the perfect, minimally invasive treatment option if your teeth are slightly discolored, gapped, or have minor cracks or chips. 

Final thought

As far as cosmetic procedures that can improve the appearance of your teeth while also helping you to maintain an overall healthy mouth, dental bonding and veneers are both brilliant options.

Whether it makes more sense for you to choose one or the other procedure depends on the severity and location of the issue you are hoping to fix. Hopefully, this article has provided you with enough of an overview over both bonding and veneers to know which option is right for you.

Dr Febin Mary George - Editor

With more than 10 years as a dental surgeon, Dr Febin Mary George is passionate about educating consumers around the world to help look after their teeth.

She completed her Bachelor of Surgery at the Century Institute of Dental Science and Research Centre in 2010.

Alongside editing the International Journal of Dental Clinics she has also written for major publications including Thrive Global.