Significant tooth appearance issues can require more dental assistance than simple crowns, whitening, or braces can provide. Dental bonding and veneers are two of the most common cosmetic dentistry methods to fix the appearance of teeth while maintaining the health of the natural tooth.
Some situations will make it clear whether bonding or veneers are the right choice. For example, teeth that are widely varied in size will require veneers, which involve shaving down the natural tooth so that the sizes will match up. But sometimes it isn't as clear whether bonding or veneers are the right choice.
Here are a few considerations to keep in mind before your next dentist appointment.
Dental bonding tends to be cheaper because there is less work involved for the dentist. But dental bonding material only has a lifespan between three to 10 years with proper care.
Veneers, however, have an average lifespan of about 10 to 15 years with proper care. That added time can make the veneers cost less over the lifetime of your dental work as the veneers will need fewer replacements than bonded teeth.
Consider whether you can afford more upfront cost or if you need to or want to pay less now with the chance of additional charges in the nearer future.
Tooth Root Health
The root canals of the tooth contain vital pulp material, which includes blood vessels and nerves that keep the tooth alive. Both bonding and veneers keep the root intact, but veneer tooth shavings can leave little else but the root intact.
If you suffer from frequent dental infections that require root canals, veneers might not be the best option. A standard root canal involves opening up the top of the tooth, cleaning out the infected material in the canal, then sealing it shut with a paste and an artificial tooth crown. Performing a root canal on a tooth with a veneer would prove complicated at best and could threaten the stability of the veneer.
Stick with dental bonding if you think you have several root canals in your future. Remember that you can always switch a bonding to a veneer at a later date, but it's hard to impossible to switch in the other direction, thanks to the tooth shaving.
The choice between veneers and bonding is ultimately a conversation you should have with your dentist. There could be extra considerations based on your specific problems that the dentist can present and discuss. Cosmetic dentistry can be a long-term commitment so it's important to know all of the options before you proceed. Contact a company like MyoTech Dental & Implant Center for more information.