First impressions when meeting somebody new are everything. You could be the most wonderful person in the world, but a poor first interaction might spoil a stranger’s perception of you for the rest of their life. And unfortunately, you only have about 100 milliseconds or less to make that impression.
People use a lot of cues to formulate said impression, from your demeanor to the way you carry yourself. But how you look also matters, such as how good your smile is. A cracked or missing tooth is not a good start.
Dental implants vs. veneers: which one is best to improve your smile? In this guide, we discuss the pros and cons of each when you head to your cosmetic dentist.
What Are Dental Implants?
Losing one tooth, or several, can introduce a number of complications into a person’s life. They can experience challenges with chewing, difficulty speaking, and accelerated bone loss.
To combat this, a dentist will implant a tooth or teeth directly into your jaw. This tooth has a false, metal root that remains firmly in place. The tooth, by all external appearances, looks and functions like the real thing.
Pros of Dental Implants
Dental implants restore full functionality when it comes to talking and chewing. Once the dental implant heals fully, you won’t even notice that it’s there.
There is a massive reduction in bone loss after a dental implant. Surrounding teeth and gums also get proper support and structure.
You will still need to keep it clean and care for your gums. However, it restores any loss you may have experienced in speaking, eating, and having a pleasant facial structure.
Cons of Dental Implants
Unfortunately, dental implants are quite invasive and go beyond general dentistry. This is a full-blown surgery that involves placing a metal screw into your jawbone to secure the implant.
Naturally, there will be several months of recovery. There could be quite a bit of pain and discomfort in the process.
You may have limitations and what you can eat until fully healed. Smoking will not be allowed since it could cause the implant to fail.
There is a risk of infection that could lead to implant failure and worse problems. The implant might also damage surrounding teeth, bone, and tissues during surgery.
Further, the implant(s) may not feel like the tooth/teeth they are replacing. There may be some misalignment, some discomfort chewing, or an implant that is not securely in place. There is also a risk of nerve damage and periodontal disease.
What Are Dental Veneers?
What happens if you haven’t lost the tooth entirely? For example, a chipped tooth, one that is discolored, or one that is simply smaller than average. This is where veneers come in to improve your smile.
Veneers are just as the name implies: a thin covering over your tooth. Dentists will create a custom resin-based or porcelain-based shell out of a mold taken from your tooth.
To apply it, a dentist will bond it to your tooth permanently. The result is a tooth that looks brand new and regains the function that it lost.
Pros of Dental Veneers
Dental veneers are great for covering teeth in various conditions and giving instead a healthy, beautiful smile. They are capable of reducing gaps between your teeth or reshaping teeth so they look better. In severe cases, they can restore a chipped or broken tooth to its former glory.
Further, dental veneers are far less invasive than dental implants. They do you still require a not-insignificant procedure to install them–and may require anesthesia. But upon completion, you can keep them for over a decade in most cases.
Cons of Dental Veneers
The main downside to dental veneers is that they are a façade for your teeth. While they can hold broken teeth together, they may not be as durable as a crown or an implant.
Veneers will introduce some limitations to what you can eat. Dentists advise against chewing on anything hard, such as fingernails or ice. They recommend using your molars more often for tougher food.
In addition to this, veneers may require a retainer to avoid teeth clenching or grinding while you sleep. Those who love to play sports will definitely need a mouthguard. This is because resin or porcelain can crack under extreme stress.
In general, you will have to develop better habits with your teeth. That means no more using your teeth to rip open packages, or to chew on a pencil or pen. Veneers are not as strong as your teeth themselves, so keep that in mind.
Dental Implants vs. Veneers: Which One Is Right for You?
First and foremost, we recommend setting a dentist appointment to get a professional opinion, rather than self-diagnosing with an Internet article.
Generally speaking, though, the reasons to get dental implants or dental veneers are pretty straightforward. If you are missing a tooth entirely (or several teeth), you likely need dental implants. But if the tooth is still there–albeit chipped, cracked, discolored, and so on–then dental veneers should get the job done.
Remember, dental implants require invasive surgery and months of subsequent recovery. Getting veneers is a procedure that only take a couple of hours and lets you use your teeth normally shortly after. Discuss these options with your dentist and they will advise you on the best course for your oral health.
Set an Appointment with Toothologie
When it comes to dental implants vs. veneers, both serve very specific roles. Dental implants exist to replace one or several missing teeth. Dental veneers serve as a protective shell for an existing tooth.
Not sure which one you need? Toothologie is here to help. Drop by and see your options for cosmetic dentistry at our industry-leading clinic.