Should I Get Dental Crowns or Veneers? Let's Compare. By Dr. John Goodman on August 30, 2023

smiling man with veneers

If you’re considering enhancing your smile, you might be curious about the differences between porcelain veneers and dental crowns. Both can improve your appearance but it’s important to know the unique advantages of each procedure. I have decades of experience performing crowns and veneers treatment at my Kansas CityMO, dental practice. In addition, I use only the best materials and techniques for every type of dental solution. Keeping that in mind, let’s take a closer look at the two and why you might choose one over the other.

Veneers & Crowns: The Basics

Veneers are very thin shells that cover the front surface of one or more teeth. They’re typically made of porcelain for the most lifelike appearance.

In contrast, crowns cover the entire surface of the tooth that is visible above the gumline. Crowns can be made of metal, porcelain, zirconia, or porcelain-fused-to-metal (PFM), depending on your needs.

Candidates for Crowns

Crowns do have cosmetic applications but they’re more commonly recommended for structural issues, such as to strengthen a tooth weakened by root canal therapy. We might also recommend crowns for:

  • Large chips
  • Fractured teeth
  • Small teeth
  • Irregularly shaped teeth

Crowns are typically placed on the molars for restorative purposes. That said, they can achieve aesthetic results and might be recommended over veneers for cosmetic reasons as well. 

Candidates for Veneers

Veneer candidates need to have good oral health. Unlike crowns, this treatment cannot address large cavities or areas of decay. Another consideration is whether or not you have a sufficient amount of enamel present to support the restoration. Veneers can conceal:

  • Smaller chips and cracks
  • Gaps between teeth
  • Other types of cosmetic concerns affecting the front teeth

While both types of restorations can mask internal discoloration that doesn’t respond to whitening, you’ll need to keep in mind that veneers have some degree of translucence. Because they are somewhat transparent, veneers are even more natural-looking but very dark staining could show through.

Benefits of Crowns & Veneers

Some reasons to choose crowns include:

  • The procedure may be covered by insurance if it’s considered medically necessary
  • Provides strength and support to weakened teeth
  • Might be better for people who grind their teeth

Unique benefits of veneers include:

  • More conservative treatment since less of the tooth will be modified
  • Can achieve even more realistic effects, especially on the highly visible front teeth

Dental Bonding: Another Alternative

Whether you have restorative or cosmetic concerns, a popular alternative at our Kansas City office is dental bonding. Bonding–often referred to as tooth-colored fillings when it’s being used to treat cavities–involves applying a tooth-colored resin to the tooth. Though bonding is more conservative, it doesn’t last nearly as long and cannot achieve the same degree of realism as crowns and veneers.

Learn More in a Dental Consultation

Crowns and veneers do share some applications but they are very distinct procedures. The best way for my Kansas City team to recommend an appropriate treatment is for you to visit our office. Contact us today to get started on your new healthy and attractive smile.

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John P. Goodman, DDS

John P. Goodman, DDS We Give Kansas City a Reason to Smile!

Dr. John Goodman has more than two decades of experience serving the community of Kansas City, MO. He offers a comprehensive range of services to address all types of dental problems, and he accepts CareCredit® financing to make treatment as accessible as possible. 

To request a consultation, please fill out our online form or call us at (816) 842-8585.

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