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Veneers vs. Implants

Do you have chipped, broken, or missing teeth that disrupt your smile and sap your confidence? Both dental veneers and implants can repair damage and make your smile look more uniform. However, it can be difficult to know which procedure is best for your situation. 

The guide below explains what veneers and dental implants are, who’s a good candidate for each of them, and how much they cost. This information can help you decide which option is right for you when choosing veneers vs. implants. 

Do chipped, broken, or missing teeth cause you discomfort and make you self-conscious? Dr. Phong, D.D.S. is a leading name in cosmetic dentistry. He and his aesthetic team at Luminae are experts in dental veneers, implants, and much more. Contact Luminae today for more information. 

Dental Implants Replace Damaged or Missing Teeth

Dental implants are artificial prosthetic teeth that replace broken or missing teeth. A titanium root is set into the jaw and capped with a realistic-looking ceramic or porcelain tooth. These implants are permanent, so they’re made of durable materials—however, they still require regular care, just like the rest of your natural teeth. 

Types of Dental Implants

There are several common types of dental implants designed to remedy different problems, including: 

  • Single implants to replace one missing or damaged tooth
  • Implant-supported bridge to replace consecutive missing teeth
  • Implant-retained denture to replace several non-consecutive missing teeth

A dentist specializing in dental implants can help you determine which option is best for you. 

How Much Do Dental Implants Cost?

Depending on the extent of your needs, dental implants can cost from $1,500 to $4,000 or more. The cost of your procedure includes the implants themselves, the price of your examinations, the procedure, and surgeon’s fees. 

Though cosmetic dentistry isn’t usually covered by insurance, you may be able to get partial or full coverage if the procedure is deemed medically necessary. 

How Long is the Dental Implant Procedure?

From start to finish, getting a dental implant can take between 6 and 12 weeks. During your first procedural appointment, a titanium implant will be surgically placed into your jaw. The intervening weeks give your jaw time to heal around the dental implant so that it’s permanently affixed to your jaw. 

During your second procedural appointment, your dentist will secure a durable faux tooth to the titanium implant. At this point, your smile will be completely restored. 

How Long Do Dental Implants Last?

With proper care and maintenance, the implants in your jaw can last a lifetime. They’re designed to be permanent fixtures in your mouth, which is why they’re made from titanium or similar materials. 

The upper part of the implant that holds the faux tooth will need to be replaced every 10 to 15 years. However, regular brushing, flossing, and attending dental appointments help ensure their longevity.  

How Long is Recovery After Getting a Dental Implant?

After your implant is complete, recovery time is fairly short—most people experience mild pain and swelling for one to two days. Ice and over-the-counter pain medications are usually enough to alleviate any discomfort. 

Dental Implants Pros and Cons

Dental implants can completely and permanently replace a damaged or missing tooth. They require little maintenance to maintain and function just like the rest of your teeth. They may even make it easier to eat and speak. 

On the other hand, dental implants are more expensive than most other dental procedures. There’s also a lengthy waiting period between your first and second appointments, so completing the procedure is time-consuming. 

Veneers Cover the Surface of Damaged Teeth

Dental veneers are thin, porcelain or ceramic shells applied to the front of a chipped or damaged tooth. They’re also often used to cover stains or gaps to make teeth look more uniform. 

Since veneers are usually only used for cosmetic purposes, they’re most often applied to the front teeth, including the incisors and canines. 

Types of Veneers

Various types of dental veneers are available, depending on the state of your teeth and your aesthetic goals. 

Common veneer options include: 

  • Porcelain—most common type of veneer because it’s durable and stain-resistant
  • Composite/resin—creates a very realistic appearance but is delicate and easily damaged
  • Removable—can be worn during the day and removed at night
  • Lumineers—similar to porcelain, but the application is less invasive
  • Palatal overlays—used to support and strengthen damaged teeth

How Much Do Veneers Cost?

Veneers vary in cost based on the materials you choose and how many you need. Porcelain veneers typically cost about $1000 to $2500 per tooth, while composite veneers may only cost $200 to $1500 per tooth. 

How Long is the Veneer Application Procedure?

On average, the time from your first appointment to the final veneer application is about three weeks. At your first appointment, your dentist will scrape away some of the enamel from your teeth to prepare them for veneers. The dentist will then make an impression of your mouth and apply temporary veneers to protect your teeth. 

Once your custom veneers are ready, you’ll go back to your dentist so they can affix the veneers to your teeth. Permanent veneers are attached with bonding cement, while removable veneers are made to snap into place over your teeth.  

How Long Do Veneers Last?

Depending on the material you choose, veneers can last anywhere from 5 to 20 years. Composite veneers are the most delicate and will need to be replaced within 5 to 7 years. Porcelain veneers can last 10 to 20 years with the right care and maintenance. 

How Long is Recovery After Getting a Veneer?

There is no standard recovery time after getting veneers. You should be able to eat, drink, and speak as you normally would once the local anesthetic wears off. However, there may be an adjustment period while you get used to the new shape of your teeth. 

If you grind your teeth, you should consider wearing a mouthguard at night to prevent damaging your veneers. It’s also best to avoid chewing on hard objects, like ice, or biting your nails.

Veneers Pros and Cons

Compared to dental implants, veneers are a fast and minimally invasive procedure—especially if you opt for Lumineers. Porcelain veneers are fairly durable, long-lasting, and getting them takes just a few trips to the dentist’s office. 

However, veneers can become chipped and stained—especially the composite variety—and need to be replaced every so often. Veneers may also increase your teeth’s sensitivity to temperature, and they can’t be used to replace missing teeth. 

How to Choose Between Veneers vs. Implants

Whether you choose veneers vs. implants largely depends on your dentistry needs. Veneers are well-suited to correcting gaps between teeth, concealing stains or chips, reinforcing damaged teeth, or making your smile look more uniform. 

However, if your teeth are broken or missing, dental implants are the better solution. Veneers only cover the front of your teeth, while dental implants can replace a whole natural tooth. 

Luminae Offers Both Veneers and Implants in Las Vegas

As the lead dentist at Luminae, Dr. Phong D.D.S. has over a decade of experience completing dental implantations and veneer applications. Dental health is essential to your overall well-being, and a winning smile is crucial to confidence. Dr. Phong is dedicated to cosmetic dentistry because he wants to help people meet their dental health and aesthetic goals. 

Schedule a consultation with Dr. Phong today to learn more about whether dental implants or veneers are right for you. 

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Why Choose Luminae

Are you ready to cultivate your own award-winning smile? Dr. Phong and his team at Luminae will guide you toward a happier, healthier mouth with a wide variety of cosmetic dentistry services in Henderson, NV and Las Vegas.

To schedule a cosmetic dentistry consultation with Dr. Phong in Las Vegas, contact Luminae today.

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