The Similarities and Differences Between Crowns, Veneers, and Bridges

Posted Jul 2nd, 2020 in Dental Tips

The Similarities and Differences Between Crowns, Veneers, and Bridges

Do you have a cracked tooth you’d like to fix or a missing tooth that’s causing you embarrassment? If so, it’s time to get your teeth fixed. There are a number of cosmetic and dental restoration treatments that will solve your issues and provide you with a stunning smile, but which one is right for you? Let us show you all the similarities and differences between crowns, veneers, and bridges to help you better understand why your dentist may have recommended one over another.

Primary Purpose
A crown is a cap that is used to cover a damaged tooth. It is often the method of choice when tooth structure has been lost but there is enough of the tooth left in place. It is used to restore teeth without actually removing or implanting any teeth. A bridge is used to replace one or more missing teeth — its purpose is to close the gap by inserting a fake tooth (or multiple teeth) with one crown on either side of the bridge that function as anchors. A veneer is used to change the colour, shape, or size of a tooth (or teeth) by using a thin coating of porcelain to cover the front of an existing tooth.

The coverage that each of these provides is also quite different in comparison. For instance, a crown will cover the entire tooth that needs to be repaired, but a bridge will only cover the gap and any surrounding teeth that need to be trimmed. A veneer, on the other hand, will only cover the very front of the tooth as it is primarily for cosmetic purposes.

Level of Tooth Decay
What option is best for you will depend on the level of tooth decay that you are experiencing. For example, veneers are only used for mild improvements, such as chipped or crooked teeth. A crown is often best when the tooth is more damaged by a crack, enamel erosion, or infection but does not need a full extraction. For those who have fully lost a tooth or required an extraction, a bridge is what’s needed to fill in the spot of the missing tooth and to add more stability to support the surrounding teeth and gums.

Trimming Requirements
To place a crown, bridge, or veneer properly in place, trimming of the tooth or surrounding teeth may be required. This differs for each. A veneer only requires a small amount on the front side of the tooth. A crown requires a significant amount for the tooth and finally, a bridge may also require slight trimming of the two teeth on the opposite side of the gap.

Dental bridges are more expensive than crowns and veneers when comparing these treatments on an apples to apples basis. However, there are several different options for veneers and crowns that you can explore depending on your budget.

Made in a Lab
What do these cosmetic dentistry appliances have in common? They are all made in a lab that uses high heat to cure and harden the chosen material into the right shape and size. To make the form, your dentist will take an impression of your tooth and surrounding teeth to create a mould that is sent to the lab. This outlines the size and shape of your teeth and how they should fit together. It’s then used by the technician to create your cap, coating, or bridge.

Looks Like the Real Thing
You won’t need to feel embarrassed about your teeth anymore. Thanks to the latest in dental technology and innovation, crowns, bridges, and veneers can be made to match the appearance of your natural teeth in both shape, size, and hue (all with incredible accuracy).

Provides Stability and Protection
Each treatment also provides more stability and protection for the tooth. The materials used are strong, durable, and designed to last for years to come.

In most instances, it takes approximately two dental visits to get a crown, bridge, or veneer. The first day is for taking impressions and to prepare the tooth. The second visit is to apply the treatment to your teeth. There may be follow up appointments needed.

As you can see, there are many differences and similarities between the most popular dental restoration procedures. However, the most important consideration should be focused on what dental issue you are trying to solve and what your budget is. When visiting one of our dentists at Dentistry at the Crossing, we’ll carefully examine your teeth and make recommendations based on your requirements, preferred materials, and budget. We’ll get you the smile you deserve and ensure that your crown, bridge, or veneer gives you years of support and stability for optimal oral health. Call us today to book an appointment with one of our specialists.

(613) 225-7000