Porcelain Veneers vs. Crowns?

Last year, I chipped off 1/3 of the bottom of my front tooth. My dentist told me she wants to put on a 3/4 veneer. How is this different from a regular veneer? Is this a conservative approach or will a large amount of tooth be shaven down for a 3/4 veneer? How long should this replacement last, and can one veneer match all of my other teeth?

Doctor Answers 4

Veneer to match a single tooth

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It is said one of the most challenging things we do in dentistry is to match a single front tooth. Your dentist and lab will need to take several extra steps to ensure it looks good, but the result can be fantastic. You want to ensure that the most conservative option is taken during the preparation of the veneer. A veneer is a thin facing over a surface. You can even have a 360 degree veneer, one that is kept in all enamel and very thin. I am sure that your dentist will prepare what needs to be done to the existing tooth and nothing more.

Cincinnati Dentist

Veneers work great for chipped teeth.

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If you only have one chipped tooth then a veneer would be a good choice for treatment. A crown is too extensive for a chipped tooth..Keep your own tooth structure when possible. Veneers are conservative and the shade can be matched using a good lab and some tooth whitening home care...

Michael J. Thomas, DDS
Los Angeles Dentist

Porcelain dental veneers are better than crowns

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As a rule of thumb, if a porcelain veneer (or 3/4 crown even) is possible, it is a better option than a full crown.  Less tooth structure is removed which means a stronger tooth.  Crowns aren't BAD, but if I had a choice I would choose the most conservative approach that does not compromise the result. 

Matching color and shape to the other teeth is possible, but may take extra effort and skill by the dentist and lab.  Additional visits and fees may be required to achieve "perfect".

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Veneer for fractured tooth.

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Your broken tooth can likely be repaired with a Porcelain Veneer and YES - it is a more conservative approach and preserves tooth structure. The other teeth can be matched very closely, although it may require more effort and skill on the part of the dentist and will likely be a higher fee to match one tooth. 

Mickey Bernstein, DDS
Memphis Dentist

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.