Last updated date: 01-Jun-2023

Medically Reviewed By

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Btissam Fatih

Originally Written in English

Everything you need to know about Veneers – Definition, cost, recommendations and more

    What are Veneers?

    Dental veneers are one possible solution that can help you get the look you want. They are a popular choice for people with tooth defects, tooth gaps, or tooth deformities. Dental veneers are thin coatings that adhere to teeth to give them a more estehtic appearance. There is a variety of dental veneer options for you to choose from on the market. Discuss with your dentist what is best for you.

    If you want to improve your smile, dental veneers are an easy option. The veneer is a thin layer that is placed on the front (visible) part of the tooth. They look like natural teeth. Veneers can be used to correct a wide range of dental problems, such as:

    • Stained teeth that cannot be whitened with bleaching
    • Fragmented or worn teeth
    • Curved or deformed teeth
    • Uneven spaces or between the upper front teeth with large spaces

    Veneers are made of porcelain or composite resin materials. Your dentist will help you choose the best material for you. Each type of coating has its own advantages.

    Porcelain Veneers: Porcelain Veneer is a thin layer customized to fit the teeth. Advantages of porcelain veneers include:

    • They are strong and durable
    • They have a natural looking surface
    • There is less tooth enamel that needs to be removed than with crowns
    • They are not easy to stain
    • Place ceramic veneers on missing teeth


    How are Porcelain Veneers placed?

    Porcelain veneers

    When preparing the teeth, the dentist usually removes a small amount of enamel on the front and side of the tooth. This leaves room for the veneer and makes your teeth look natural. The dentist makes an impression or a mold of the prepared tooth. The dentist will also determine the veneer color that best matches your smile. The impression is sent to the dental laboratory, which will customize a suitable porcelain veneer for your teeth. This may take a few days. During this period, the dentist may give you a temporary veneer. At the next visit, the dentist places the veneer on the teeth to verify fit and shape. After making adjustments, the dentist cleans the teeth and adheres the veneers to the teeth using a specific veneer sealant. You can make further adjustments to the veneers in future appointments if you are not pleased with the result or if there is discomfort caused by them.

    Composite Resin Veneers: Composite Resin Veneer is made of tooth-colored filling material that is bonded to the teeth.

    Benefits of composite resin veneers include:

    • generally, requires less enamel to remove than a porcelain crown.
    • may require fewer visits to the dentist; sometimes these veneers only require one visit.
    • costs less than porcelain veneers.
    • surfaces are easy to repair if damaged.
    • although the strength and wear resistance of composite veneers are generally not as good as porcelain veneers, composite veneers can be easily and quickly repaired


    How are composite resin veneers placed?

    After preparing the tooth, dentists use composites to carefully bond and sculpt the composites in the color that best suits their needs. A special light is used to harden composites and bond them to teeth. Veneers are smoothed and polished to look like natural teeth.

    Before receiving veneers, your teeth and gums must be healthy. Your dentist can treat any disease or tooth decay before placing the veneers. Veneers are not always a good choice for patients that have a habit of clenching or grinding their teeth, because thin veneers may chip or break. If you clench or grind your teeth, your dentist may recommend that you wear plastic braces while you sleep.

    Although your dentist will remove as little enamel as possible for veneers, once the enamel is removed, the process cannot be undone. Over time, the plate can loosen. In this case, a new one may be needed.

    As with all your dental care, discuss all of your expectations and treatment options with your dentist. Regular visits to the dentist are necessary to maintain healthy teeth and gums.


    After care for Veneers

    The coating chips or ruptures under pressure. Avoid biting your nails and chewing hard objects like pencils or ice.

    It may take a few days for you to get used to the feeling of the veneer. However, if you feel uncomfortable with the bite after applying the veneer, be sure to tell your dentist. Before you leave the office, he or she will modify and correct it.

    Brush and floss your teeth every day to keep your teeth and gums clean. You may still have holes under or around the veneer. Look for dental care products that display the American Dental Association seal of approval. This means that the product meets ADA's safety and effectiveness standards.

    Although porcelain veneers are resistant to staining, your dentist may recommend that you avoid foods and beverages that can cause stains (for example, coffee, tea, or red wine).



    Risks of veneers include:

    • The procedure cannot be undone
    • Veneers are more expensive than composite resin bonding.
    • If the veneer is chipped or cracked, it is usually impossible to repair it.
    • As tooth enamel is removed, your teeth may become more sensitive to hot and cold foods and drinks.
    • Veneers may not exactly match the color of your other teeth. In addition, the color of the veneer cannot be changed once it is in place. If you plan to whiten your teeth, you should do it before veneers.
    • Although unlikely, they may fall off. To minimize the chance of this happening, please do not bite your nails, chew on pencils, ice cubes or other hard objects, and do not put excessive pressure on your teeth.
    • Dental decay may still occur on veneer teeth, and it may be necessary to completely cover the teeth with a crown.
    • Veneers are not a good choice for people with diseased teeth (for example, people with tooth decay or active gum disease), weakened teeth (due to tooth decay, fractures, large fillings), or people who do not have enough existing teeth.
    • People who clench and grind their teeth are not suitable for porcelain veneers as this can cause cracking or chipping of the veneers.

    Tooth veneer does not require any special care. Continue to follow good oral hygiene habits, including brushing your teeth, flossing and rinsing your mouth with antibacterial mouthwash as usual.


    The cost of Dental Veneers

    The cost of dental veneers may depend on where you live and how much work you want to be done. Generally speaking, the price of each tooth ranges from US$1,000 to US$2,000. The cost is usually not covered by insurance. To be sure, check with your dental insurance company.


    Alternatives to Dental Veneers

    Alternatives to veneers include bondings and crowns. Veneers are a good intermediate option. If you want to change the shape of your teeth a bit, veneers may be your best option, but they are not enough to require a crown.


    Veneers vs Lumineers

    Less preparation. Lumineers is a veneer brand that requires less preparation and advanced dental work than traditional veneers. These are often referred to as "unprepared" veneers. They are not porcelain, but are made of "ultra-thin" laminate.

    Opacity. Lumineers are also more translucent than veneers As with traditional veneers, dentists use Lumineers to treat discolored and abnormally shaped teeth. They feel soft and smooth to the touch.  Lumineers are thinner and more translucent than traditional porcelain veneers. Therefore, they are not a good option for people with very discolored teeth. Lumineers are thinner than traditional veneers, so you do not need to have your teeth grinded to make them thinner. Your dentist will have a set of customized Lumineers to meet your specific treatment needs.

    Shorter preparation and application process. After your initial consultation, you still need to make at least two appointments. The first appointment will be shorter because your dentist does not need to trim or "prep" your teeth. They only need to leave an impression or mold.

    They are semi-permanent. Unlike veneers, Lumineers are semi-permanent. After use, they can be removed with minimal damage to the teeth. Similar to veneers, Lumineers can make cleaning around the gum line difficult. This will increase your risk of gum disease.

    Service life of 10-20 years. Lumineers manufacturers claim that they have a service life of up to 20 years. Other sources report that these types of veneers can only be used for a maximum of 10 years before they need to be replaced. There are few long-term studies on the shelf life of Lumineers.

    Cost. Lumineers’ cost per tooth is between 800 and 2,000 US dollars. In most cases, insurance will not cover them because they are considered elective cosmetic treatments.


    Dental Implants vs Veneers

    If you lose a tooth, your dentist may recommend dental implants. The titanium piece will be inserted into the upper or the lower jawbone. Once the bone and implant are fused, a crown restoration will be performed to complete the surgery. The implant looks almost the same as your natural tooth. Implants are very suitable for posterior teeth because the metal roots will not be visible. However, dental implants may not be suitable for the front teeth. If you are dealing with teeth that are chipped, stained, misplaced, or frayed, you may want to consider veneers. Also, if you are looking for a Hollywood smile, veneers may be your best option. Veneers are often the solution to some cosmetic problems: crooked teeth, gaps between teeth, or cracked and damaged enamel. Dental veneers are medical grade ceramics, carefully crafted to match your natural teeth. The process is relatively simple: the dentist uses dental adhesive to bond the veneer to each tooth.


    How lengthy is the procedure for Veneers vs. Implants?

    Implant: The entire process will vary depending on your treatment plan. It can take up to 10 months. Since the jaw must be fused with the implant before the operation is completed, the time will vary from person to person.

    Veneers: You can finish the veneer after seeing the dentist 3 times on average.


    How long can they hold on?

    Implant: It can last a lifetime through routine dental examination. The titanium material is fused with the lower jaw, and the metal can resist tooth decay and gum problems.

    Veneers: Usually can be used for 10-15 years. However, they are just as vulnerable to the same damage as your natural teeth; they can also chip and / or crack. The veneer is also easy to stain.


    How Much Does It Cost?

    Implants: The total cost of implants per tooth is approximately $1,500 to $6,000.

    Veneers: Veneers cost between $800 and $2,000 per tooth.


    Veneers vs Braces

    Veneers vs Braces

    Braces are commonly used to treat severely misaligned teeth, such as those seen in overbite or crossbite. They are also sometimes used to help correct gaps between teeth or certain types of crowding. Braces are a long-term commitment because they are used as semi-permanent accessories that are placed in the mouth and that have a predetermined time of use. They also require very complex cleaning methods to keep teeth free of bacteria. The most common complaint about braces is that you have restrictions on the types of food you can eat. Even the removable forms should stay in the mouth for at least 20 hours a day to reduce casual snacking or spontaneous eating.

    However, veneers are perfect for people who have crooked or discolored teeth, or those who want to correct tiny gaps. This operation requires only two to three appointments to obtain natural and beautiful teeth, which has a huge time advantage compared with braces. They are as effective as braces in filling the small spaces between existing teeth. Patients receiving veneers have almost no dietary restrictions, which is another advantage compared with braces. The veneer has incredible abrasion resistance and can be used for a long time. The process itself is very fast and relatively painless.


    How to decide between the two?

    In most cases, the nature of the oral dislocation may determine which is best for you. Certain types of oral health problems may even require braces and veneers. Before deciding on a treatment plan, you should meet with your dentist and seek his or her advice based on your specific needs.


    Veneers vs Dentures

    Dentures are removable dentures that are used for missing teeth. They are made of porcelain or plastic materials. Dentures are common among the elderly because they lose some or all of their teeth as they age. They are also suitable for people who have lost teeth after trauma or serious underlying oral diseases. Common causes of tooth loss include aging, cavities, severe cavities, facial damage, and periodontal disease. Fortunately, dentures can solve all the above situations because they look like natural teeth.

    Complete dentures. Complete dentures are used when all of a person's teeth are missing. They are made of plastic or acrylic base to match the color of your gums. The oral adhesive holds the entire denture in place. They are convenient because they can be easily removed. Complete dentures are divided into two categories. The prosthetist places the dentures immediately after the natural teeth are extracted. Candidates can wear dentures without waiting for the healing period. However, they are a temporary solution before placing traditional full dentures. The placement of the traditional prosthesis is usually performed 8-12 weeks after extraction. They are better than immediate dentures because the gums heal completely when they are placed.

    Partial dentures. Partial dentures are very convenient for candidates who still have some natural teeth. Like full dentures, they are easy to remove. They consist of dentures on a plastic base. To keep the teeth in place, the prosthesis has a metal frame. The dentist places the denture crown in the space where the tooth is missing and installs the denture. The molded partial denture consists of a strong and thin metal frame, which is where we can add teeth in the future. They contain ultrafine cobalt-chromium alloys, which help improve stability and strength. Cast partial dentures are beneficial because they are stronger and have minimal gum irritation. Some acrylic dentures are made from all acrylic resin materials, which look like natural teeth. They usually have metal support buckles, but this is optional, depending on the specific needs of the patient. Compared to partially cast dentures, they are cost-effective. However, due to the thick acrylic resin, dental flaps can be very uncomfortable. In addition, they can cause nausea, their alkalinity is weak, and long-term use can cause gum recession.

    Implant-supported dentures. Denture replacements are an excellent alternative for people who need a permanent fixture. With the help of implants consisting of titanium screws, custom crowns, and the implant itself, the dentist placed the denture in the space where the tooth was missing. However, this procedure requires multiple visits and the waiting time is approximately 3 to 6 months. This is because the titanium screw must be properly fused with the jawbone before the crown and denture are placed. Due to its excellent stability, implant-supported dentures are one of the most reliable restorations for missing teeth; titanium screws fix the implants containing dentures directly on the jawbone. In addition, the implant can prevent osteoporosis, which helps maintain the shape and strength of the candidate's jaw.

    Snap-on Dentures. Snap-on dentures consist of titanium screws fused into the candidate jaw and dentures with implants that can be removed at any time. The implant of the fixed prosthesis consists of clips fixed to the mandibular fusion screw. Push-in dentures are suitable for candidates who need a more stable solution than traditional dentures. In addition, they are versatile in comparison with implant-supported dentures. Similar to implant-supported dentures, alveolar socket prostheses can prevent bone atrophy.


    How are Dentures applied?

    First, the dental specialist will study the patient's jaw to make an impression of the shape of the teeth and jaw. This step is the most important, because it determines whether the customized prosthesis fits perfectly. The next step is to perform a complete radiological examination to ensure that there are no potential problems that may cause future complications. Then the orthodontist makes a model of the upper and lower gums.

    During the second visit, the dentist will check the alignment between the lower jaw and the upper jaw. This step ensures that the candidate gets suitable dentures.

    Dental experts recommend using temporary dentures with loose wax bases before placing the final custom dentures. Temporary dentures mimic the appearance and size of the candidate’s mouth. This includes the shape, color, size and length of the patient’s natural teeth.

    At the last visit, the dentist will place the customized final tooth on a base that mimics the color of the gums. Benefits of dentures include:

    • They are easy to remove.
    • They can last a long time with proper care.
    • Dentures look like natural teeth.
    • Each patient receives a unique prosthesis based on their specific needs.
    • Prosthetics improve your smile.
    • Prevents sagging of the face.
    • Tooth support function improves speaking and eating habits.

    Denture disadvantages:

    • Dentures may be uncomfortable during the first few days or weeks.
    • The prosthesis may loosen, making it difficult to speak and eat.
    • Requires a high level of maintenance to avoid infection.
    • Candidates must have their dentures removed overnight.


    Alternatives to Dentures

    Although they are more expensive, dental implants are more effective than dentures. The dental implant is supported by screws fused with the jaw, so there is no room to loosen. If properly cared for, the implant can last a lifetime. Overdentures are also a great alternative to dentures. Overdentures provide stability because they do not move. The prosthesis is supported by strong implants. Another good option is to use a dental bridge, which rests on the crowns of the teeth.


    The bottom line is everyone is different so it is essential that before you make a decision you talk to your doctor about your wishes, what you expect and your budget.