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Home » What are composite veneers? Are they your best options?

What are composite veneers? Are they your best options?

Composite veneers, or composite resin veneers, are an advanced cosmetic dental treatment option that can solve several teeth problems, including the following:

  • Chipped teeth
  • Crooked teeth
  • Heavily stained teeth
  • Misshapen teeth
  • Teeth with severe enamel loss
  • Teeth with rough surfaces

They are made from tooth-colored resin and are less expensive than porcelain veneers.

The treatment is easy and fast. Most importantly, it is a reversible process. You do not have to shave off your tooth enamel. Your natural teeth remain the same underneath the veneers.

Will composite veneers match the natural color of my teeth?

Composite veneers will match the natural color of your teeth.

They have come a long way from the 1970’s when they were first introduced to the cosmetic dentistry industry. They were temporarily abandoned in favor of porcelain veneers because of the technological limitation of the time.

There was no shade guide for composite veneers at that time. The invention of the high-pressure molding system and the laser surface cooling technology has advanced composite veneers over the decades. Matching a desired shade of color is now a problem of the past.

Their color blends so well with your enamel that it is hard to say you have taken veneers.

Are composite veneers popular?

Composite dental veneers are a popular option for your chipped or crooked teeth.

According to British Dental Journal, when dental patients know about different veneers, they opt for composite veneers.

The reason behind this is the esthetic satisfaction provided by composite veneers.

Another research published in Operative Dentistry shows that composite veneers offer ‘significantly better hue/ chroma, value, and translucency match to the Vita shade guide than the other materials evaluated.’

Also Read: Dental Lumineers: A Mini Guide

What kinds of composite veneers are available for me?

Today, you get two types of composite resin veneers for your dental restoration in the cosmetic dentistry industry. They are:

  • Direct composite veneers, and
  • Indirect composite veneers

What are direct composite veneers?

Dental treatment with direct composite veneers has the following characteristics:

  • The process is minimally invasive.
  • Your teeth may or may not be prepared for the veneers.
  • The veneers are applied directly to your tooth surface with an adhesive agent.
  • The treatment requires only one appointment.
  • Direct veneers are cost-effective.

What are indirect composite veneers?

A treatment with indirect composite veneers has the following characteristics:

  • Your teeth need to be prepared for the treatment.
  • You need at least two appointments. One for temporary veneers and another for your custom-made veneers.
  • The dentist sends the impression of your teeth to an in-house or external lab to make the veneers for you.
  • Indirect veneers last longer than direct veneers.
  • Indirect veneers cost more than direct veneers.

Also Read: No-prep Veneers: A Mini Guide

Which composite veneers should I choose: direct or indirect?

Placing a veneer on an unprepared tooth makes the treatment process quicker. But that does not guarantee better esthetic results.

In addition, the placement of a resin veneer on an unprepared tooth makes that veneer less resistant to fracture.

Moreover, dental adhesive tends to bond to a prepared tooth better than an unprepared tooth.

Based on the above, you should prefer indirect resin veneers to direct resin veneers.

What are prefabricated composite veneers?

Prefabricated composite veneers are semidirect restorative veneers. They fall between direct and indirect veneers and are used to treat amelogenesis imperfect in young patients.

Amelogenesis imperfect is a genetic disease and can be passed on to children. They can also appear in someone without genetic history.

This disease affects the growth of tooth enamel in its formation phase. Placing direct resin veneers on the teeth of someone who suffers from this disease does not result in good restoration. Clinical results have shown that direct veneers have a high failure rate in such a case.

Indirect composite veneers need the target teeth to be prepared for treatment. In the case of young patients, preparing the teeth increases the risk of involuntary pulp exposure.

Dentists compromised between the two techniques and settled with prefabricated composite veneers.

How long do composite veneers last?

Composite veneers last 5 to 10 years. Based on your eating habits and lifestyle, they may last longer or shorter. However, you should check with your dentist every year after year 3 to ensure they are in optimal condition.

You may damage your resin veneers if you grind or clench your teeth. Eating excessive acidic food may damage them too.

Besides, if you are into sports drinks or alcoholic beverages, composite veneers may not last you for long.

Resin veneers are thin and fancy. You can lengthen their lifespan by maintaining good oral health.

Are resin veneers stain-resistant?

Resin veneers are not stain-resistant. Although they are difficult to stain, they may be stained over time, requiring replacement.

Both extrinsic and intrinsic causes can stain resin veneers. Extrinsic causes include:

  • Eating pigmented food.
  • Consuming tea, coffee, smoothies, and juice.
  • Consuming red wine and sporting beverages.
  • Eating greasy food.
  • Constantly eating spicy food. Food with turmeric and paprika may be avoided to keep your veneers clean.

Are resin veneers better than crowns?

Resin veneers are better than crowns because they are only minimally invasive, while you need to shave off a large part of your dental structure for crowns.

According to research, you must remove 63% to 73% of the dental structure to prepare a tooth for a crown. In comparison, you need to remove only 3% to 30% of the dental structure to prepare your teeth for resin veneers.

More tooth structure means the dental adhesive has more room to work. The result is less treatment failure.

Are composite resin veneers better than porcelain veneers?

Composite veneers are not better than porcelain veneers.

Porcelain veneers are custom-made. They are stronger. That makes them last longer.

They also offer a better color match to your other teeth.

However, they are more expensive than composite veneers. When replacing them, which you may expect to do every 10 years or so, you will have to pay a handsome amount of money.

On the other hand, composite veneers are less expensive. They are strong but weaker than porcelain veneers. They do not have to be custom-made.

Composite veneers offer a great color match. They blend with your existing teeth. But they get stained more easily than porcelain veneers.

Composite resin veneers cost

Although less expensive than porcelain veneers, composite resin veneers will cost you $600 to $1,500 per tooth. The amount may be as high as $6,000 if you want to treat four teeth.

You also have to be aware that you may have to replace them five years later, although they are designed to last much more. The replacement costs will be as high as getting them for the first time.

It may happen that your dental insurance does not pay for your veneer costs. Insurance companies consider veneers cosmetic treatment. But if you have insurance that covers dental cosmetics, they may pay as much as 50% of your treatment costs.

If you have CarePlus Dental Insurance, you will get 20% off your treatment costs. It may be a good idea to look at their plans.

Do thicker veneers last longer?

Research published in Restorative Dentistry & Endodontics in 2018 shows that thicker veneers last longer than their thinner counterparts.

They last longer because they are put under lower stress concentration.

The same study also established that thinner veneers might withstand the force exerted on them in the mouth environment just the same as thicker veneers. But since they have to fight a higher stress concentration, they may not last as long as thicker veneers.


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