Call Southwest Smiles of Austin at 512-637-7333(512) 637-7333
5700 W. Slaughter Ln., Ste. 200
Austin, TX 78749
Fax: (512) 637-7336
Dr. Lakshmi Chittajallu
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Dental Crowns vs. Porcelain Veneers

Brunette woman wearing a white shirt smiles with dental veneers and her hand on her head in front of an old building

If you’re looking at restorative dental services, you probably have heard about porcelain crowns and veneers. Although both of these treatments can be used to improve your smile, they are not the same thing. Here, we’ll explain the important differences that make crowns and veneers two unique dental treatments.

What Are Dental Crowns?

Crowns, also known as caps, are tooth-shaped covers that are either prefabricated ahead of time, custom-made with a mold that is sent to a dental lab, or milled in-house at the dental practice. Southwest Smiles Family Dentistry proudly offers one-visit dental crowns using CEREC® technology. We complete your treatment the same day you come in, so you will walk out of our office flaunting a beautifully restored smile!

What Materials Make Up Crowns?

Crowns can be made of several materials, such as gold alloy, zirconia, porcelain-fused-to-metal, porcelain, or a special dental ceramic. Our dental crowns are made of a strong dental ceramic that will match the look of your natural teeth. Due to the durable nature of the materials used in modern-day crowns, they typically last between 5-15 years but can survive up to 25-30 years if they’re properly cared for.

When Are Crowns Used?

Crowns are utilized for both restorative and cosmetic purposes. They are commonly placed over a badly decayed and infected tooth that requires root canal therapy because it is past the point of repair with a filling. Dental crowns can also be used to hold a bridge in place or cover up a damaged, misshapen, or discolored tooth. If your front teeth are damaged, we can use porcelain tooth-colored crowns to blend seamlessly with your other teeth.

What Are Porcelain Veneers?

Veneers are thin shells of tooth-colored, durable porcelain that are custom-made to fit snugly on the front side of your teeth after part of the enamel is shaved down. They look completely natural and are stain-resistant. Moreover, they can last a long time with proper care.

When Are Veneers Used?

Veneers are mostly used for cosmetic reasons by covering up discolored, stained, chipped, misaligned, or uneven teeth. They can also fix small gaps between teeth! Porcelain veneers are a great way for you to get the smile of your dreams when professional teeth whitening and/or braces aren’t the right option.

How Are Veneers Placed?

The procedure of placing veneers takes two appointments. At your first visit, we’ll discuss your smile goals and design the look of your veneers via computer software. We’ll also remove a small layer of enamel so the veneers can be fitted properly. Then, we’ll take an impression of your teeth and send it off to our lab so the veneers can be handcrafted specially for you. While you’re waiting for your restoration to be made, we’ll fit you with temporary veneers. We will call you in for your second appointment when your permanent veneers arrive.

Discuss Your Smile Goals with Our Southwest Smiles Family Dentistry Team!

If you think you need a dental crown or dental veneers, give us a call to schedule a consultation at our office. Our Austin dental team will examine your teeth and gums, review your dental history, and discuss your smile goals to create a custom treatment plan that fits your unique needs and budget. We look forward to hearing from you! Contact us today.

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