Both dental implants and veneers aim to transform smiles, however the question of putting both against each other isn’t the correct way to look at it. Confused? Well, they both fall into different categories in dentistry terms because they actually do different things. It’s easy to get confused, so let’s dive into the worlds of implant and cosmetic dentistry to decipher what these treatments do and who they are suitable for.
Dental implants: a brief summary
Dental implants are a permanent solution to single or multiple missing teeth. They involve inserting a titanium root in the jawbone where the gap of your missing tooth is, and then attaching a natural looking crown on top to form your replacement tooth. The fitting process is done via a minor surgery and are usually made out of materials like porcelain and ceramics to ensure a sturdy and true to life colour to the replacement crown.
Veneers: a brief summary
Veneers are ever-growing in popularity as a cosmetic treatment that can provide you with the ‘perfect look’. Imagine a fitting over that’s places over an existing tooth like a false nail which are also made of thin sheets of porcelain because of its natural colour match to your existing teeth and its strength. You do not require to have surgery for Veneers, though some preparation of your teeth will be necessary. Dental adhesive is used to stick to the tooth surface and cover the whole tooth from top to bottom. They are used to improve the cosmetic appearance of your smile.
The main differences
- Who is suitable? Dental implants are for those only with missing teeth, as they are replacement teeth that fill the gaps in your smile. Veneers, on the other hand can only be fixed on existing teeth so they cannot act as a replacement to those teeth that are lost.
- Looks vs. Functionality. Dental implants both look and feel like a natural tooth and restore function to the mouth. They can help with everyday functionality such as biting, eating and chewing including an improved cosmetic appearance to an extent. While veneers do not improve your teeth function, they do create a more cosmetically pleasing smile and can boost your confidence in your smile.
How veneers are placed
Not needing minor surgery means that veneers are placed differently to dental implants. First, impressions are taken of your teeth so we can create your veneers to fit and shape accordingly to your natural tooth shape. Some minor preparation of your tooth is undergone by ‘roughing up’ the surface a little, which helps the work of the dental adhesive used to fix them in place. As always, every case is unique, so we estimate around three weeks to have your veneers back and ready to place on your teeth.
How dental implants are placed
Dental implants are slightly more invasive than veneers, but it only requires a minor surgery that requires local anaesthetic. Each treatment journey will of course, vary between patients as a lot of it is defined by how quickly you heal after the first placement. The root is placed first within the jawbone which may take a few months to heal. The second stage is the placing of the crown, the part that actually looks and feels like a natural tooth. Although this is a brief walkthrough of what the dental implant process is like, we take a personalised approach to all treatments and patient needs.
If you’re considering veneers or dental implants and want to know where to find them in Sussex, please don’t hesitate to contact us here at Down House Dental Practice to book your appointment today.