When many patients approach me as, cosmetic dentist in Kennewick, they feel alone with their dental problems, but the reality is that millions of Americans suffer from dental issues every year.  To give you a general idea of how many suffer from dental problems, an estimated $108 billion dollars is spent each year in the United States on dental services alone.1

Investing in cosmetic dental procedures like veneers and crowns is more than just an investment in the way your smile looks. It can also improve overall dental health. Both veneers and dental crowns can help prevent cavities, tooth decay and other problems in addition to enhancing the overall appearance of the smile. Despite the fact that veneers and dental crowns have similar results, the procedures are entirely different. Let’s look at the differences between veneers and dental crowns, so that you can select which option may be the best for you.

What are Veneers?

Veneers, otherwise known as porcelain veneers, are made from layers of ceramic. The purpose of the ceramic is to replace the enamel of a tooth that has degraded over time due to a mixture of hygienic and genetic factors. In order to apply veneers, dentists shave away minimally from the natural tooth then apply the veneer to the tooth. As a result, the tooth is now restored and stronger than it was before.

What are Dental Crowns?

A dental crown replaces the entire exterior of the tooth. This means that pretty much everything you see externally of the tooth will be the crown. The crown generally reaches all the way to the gum level, but the inner core of the original tooth remains underneath the dental crown. It looks and acts just like the other teeth, although it may be stronger since it is reinforced.

So What are the Main Differences between Veneers and Dental Crowns?

The main difference between a veneer and dental crown is that the veneer just covers the front of tooth, while the dental crown actually covers the entirety of the exterior. This means that each has its advantages and disadvantages. Working as a dentist in Kennewick,WA for a long time now, I have to say it varies from patient to patient whether a veneer or dental crown is more appropriate for the given situation. Let us quickly break down the pros and cons of each to help you further differentiate the two types of tooth replacement.

Pros and Cons of Dental Crowns


  • Strong, durable and long-lasting
  • Can change the shape and color of the tooth dramatically
  • Great for situation where the tooth is really worn down


  • Requires the remainder of the tooth to be ground down
  • It is permanent

Pros and Cons of Veneers


  • Do a great job of matching other surrounding teeth
  • Great for people with just minor damage to the tooth
  • The remaining tooth need not be grinded down much


  • Teeth may become more sensitive
  • May not last as long
  • Irreversible

If you are interested in either of these procedures, we encourage you to visit with a cosmetic dentist for a professional consultation. Now that you have some background information, you’ll be prepared to decide with your dentist which of the two options may be a good match for you.