Dental implants vs veneers: which is the right treatment for you?

When it comes to improving your smile, you have lots of options. It all depends on the issues you are experiencing and what treatment will be most suitable. Often patients confuse dental implants with dental veneers. Though they can both make a fantastic difference to your appearance and the way your smile functions, they are quite different in terms of the issues they fix and the treatment involved. In this blog post we’ll do our best to explain the two treatments, what they are used for and whether they might be beneficial to you.

What they are used for

Dental Implants

Implants are a popular solution for replacing a missing tooth or teeth. If you have knocked a tooth out, or lost one due to gum disease or periodontal decay, you will probably find that the gap it has left is bothering you. Not only can it impact your appearance when you smile, but it can also make chewing and talking more difficult. Dental implants provide a long-term, natural looking solution.  The implant itself replaces the natural tooth root, upon which a dental crown or bridge can be placed.

Dental Veneers

Veneers can fix a multitude of dental issues, including crooked, misshapen or discoloured teeth. They can also be used to resolve problems relating to eating, speaking and bite.

What the treatment involves

Dental Implants

If you are considering dental implants to replace a missing tooth, then you need to be aware that it is a more invasive and lengthier procedure compared to veneers. A titanium implant will need to be placed into the jawbone and allowed to fuse, before a crown (the part that replaces the actual tooth) can be fixed on top. The great thing about implants is that once they are placed, they act like a normal tooth and provide a very durable and long lasting solution.

Dental Veneers

A veneer is a composite or porcelain shell that is placed over the natural tooth to improve its appearance, shape, colour or position. Dental veneer treatment can be completed within a couple of appointments, firstly to take a mould of your mouth so that the veneer can be made to perfectly fit your teeth and secondly to fit the veneer. A small amount of the natural tooth’s surface will need to be removed in order to allow for a snug fit and natural looking appearance, but this is not painful and will result in a better overall aesthetic.

Is the treatment suitable for you?

Dental Implants

Whilst most people can have dental implants, there are a few exceptions. Heavy smokers and drinkers may be discouraged from treatment as a lifestyle that involves either or both of these may slow the healing process and increase the risk of infection. If you have active gum disease you will also be advised against dental implants because of the increased risk of infection which could lead to the failure of the implant.

How long your treatment takes will also depend on the issues it is fixing in the first place. For example, if you have had a missing tooth or teeth for a long time, then you may need a bone graft before the implants can be placed.

Dental Veneers

As dental veneers are used to treat minor cosmetic dentistry issues, they are generally suitable for most patients, so long as you have overall good health and an adequate amount of tooth enamel.

If you would like to discuss your options for replacing a missing tooth or improving the appearance of your smile, please contact Riverside Dental Spa on 020 7091 0677. We can arrange a consultation to advise you of your suitability for treatment.