Composite resin material is one of the most common materials for fabricating custom-made veneers. But how long does it last after 5 years vs porcelain (ceramic) veneers?
A dental veneer is custom-made ultra-thin shell of porcelain (ceramic) or composite resin material that is bonded to a tooth to the front surface of a tooth to improve its size, shape, length, or color.
Veneers are a great alternative to crowns and bonding in a good number of cosmetic dental cases. They deliver a more conservative approach to changing mishap teeth by masking any undesirable effects.
While veneer placement requires multiple appointments, bonding just requires one appointment, which means that it can be used as a faster (and more cost effective) alternative to veneers. Bonding is typically completed in-person during a single appointment, as opposed to veneers, which are created in a lab using a custom mold to obtain the ideal fit.
Dental crowns, which are sometimes referred to as tooth caps, are designed to completely enclose the visible section of a tooth that is located above the gum line, which means that some of the natural tooth structure must be removed to maintain the original size and shape of the tooth. So crowns are much more invasive compared to veneers, and may only be used if it’s necessary to also reinforce that tooth.
Veneers can be used for a variety of corrective dental procedures, including:
- Closing spaces between teeth
- Lengthening small or misshapen teeth
- Whitening stained or dark teeth – caused by excessive use of fluoride, or from the use of tetracycline and other drugs, or resulting from root canal treatment
- Protecting chipped or work worn teeth from damage and restoring them to their original appearance
- Fixing teeth that are uneven, misaligned, or irregularly shaped
Porcelain vs composite resin veneers
In terms of stain resistance, porcelain veneers are better than resin veneers, plus they are better able to imitate the light reflecting properties of natural teeth. Porcelain veneers are also stronger, which makes them last longer than their counterparts. Resin veneers, on the other hand, are thinner, and typically require less removal of the tooth surface before placement.
How composite resin veneers are applied
Composite resin veneers can be done in a single visit. First, the dentist puts a mild chemical on the front surface of the mishap tooth to roughen it. This is necessary to make the composite resin stick to the tooth enamel.
The resin that closely matches your natural teeth color is then chosen to ensure the veneer is not noticeable, and applied on your tooth in layers. The dentist uses a bright light to harden each layer of resin. After the last layer is done and well hardened, your dentist will shape and polish it to give your tooth a new, natural and smooth look.
How porcelain veneers are applied
Porcelain veneers require at least 2 dental visits to apply. During the first visit, you may be given a local anesthetic so the doctor can remove a thin layer of enamel from the concerned teeth to create room for the veneers.
Afterwards, your dentist will create a mold that will be used to custom-make your unique porcelain veneers. Before they’re ready, you will have to wear temporary ones.
On your next visit, the temporary veneers are removed. A mild chemical is applied to roughen the surface, and then the veneers are glued to your teeth.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long do veneers last?
When veneers are well bonded to tooth enamel, they can easily last for 10 to 15 years on average before you need to replace them. That said, it’s not unusual for hard porcelain veneers to last up to 20 years or even longer, whereas composite veneers typically last 7-10 years.
What happens to composite veneers after 5 years?
Composite veneers usually look great for the first 4 to 5 years on average. But after 5 years, they may begin to appear chipped, cracked, and generally worn down. The damage may appear sooner if you treat them roughly. The veneers may also begin to separate from the teeth, at which point you should think about replacing them.
How long can you expect composite veneers to last?
Composite veneers last about 3 to 5 years on average.
What is the durability of composite resin veneers vs porcelain veneers?
Composite veneers are not as durable as porcelain veneers. Porcelain veneers are known to last for 10 to 20 years without the need for replacement, if they were placed correctly. Composite veneers, on the other hand, may need to replaced in as little as 3 years or up to 10 years with proper oral care and hygiene.
Are veneers permanent white?
Veneers are largely stain resistant, but composite veneers are more likely to stain or discolor than porcelain veneers. That said, you’re likely to replace your veneers before any discoloration becomes a cosmetic concern for you.
Taking care of your veneers
Although your veneers are largely stain resistant, your natural teeth underneath are not. So you must maintain proper oral care by brushing and flossing every day. In addition, you must be extra careful about what you put in your mouth, including hard and chewy foods, or biting your nails, ice cubes, or opening a bottle, since all of these can damage your veneers.