Dental crowns or veneers, which option is best for you?

Crowns or Veneers, Which Option is Best for you?

Whenever a tooth or even several teeth become cracked, chipped, damaged or discoloured, there are several cosmetic dental treatments available that can help to quickly and effectively restore your smile. Two of the most common cosmetic dental procedures used to restore the aesthetics of natural teeth are “crowns” and “veneers”.  Meza Dental, the best clinic for dental tourism in Costa Rica, explains here which of these options may be the best fit for you.

Definition of dental crown and veneer

Let’s start with the basics. First of all, what is a dental crown? A crown, also known as dental cap, is a type of dental restoration, which completely caps or encircles a tooth or the metal frame that will be placed on a dental implant.  The crown restores the shape, size, strength and appearance of the tooth.

On the other hand, the veneers, as mentioned in our previous blog entry; is a thin, custom-made shell or layer made of a special material, normally composite or porcelain, placed over a tooth to improve the aesthetics of a smile and to protect the tooth’s surface from damage.

Both dental crowns and veneers can achieve excellent results, but they are often confused as the same thing. In fact, these dental treatments are very different procedures with different applications.

To help you understand the differences between crowns and veneers, we have summarized the two dental treatments, explaining the procedure and recovery involved in each case and the reasons why you should consider one dental treatment over the other depending on your specific situation.

Differences between a dental crown and a veneer


Veneers are typically used for issues such as chipped or broken teeth, intrinsic discoloration which won’t respond to tooth whitening, and for misalignment or gaps in teeth. If there is significant damage or decay to the tooth, a crown may be more appropriate. For a veneer, your dentist at Meza will remove a small amount of enamel from the tooth; just enough to be able to place it.

Meza´s in-house world-class laboratory will manufacture a permanent custom veneer made specially for you and your physical features. A temporary veneer is placed while the lab is preparing your permanent veneer.

The amount of time it takes to prepare your custom veneer depends on how many teeth will be covered. A full mouth restoration for example, can take the lab approximately 10 business days to prepare the veneers. However, a single tooth veneer may take as little as 1 business day.

The recovery period for a veneer treatment is little to none. You may experience numbness and sensitivity to hot or cold foods in the first 24 hours. Otherwise, patients receiving a veneer are pretty much free to continue their daily routine directly after treatment.

To recap, here are some of the most common situations for using Veneers:

  • To restore a single tooth that may have been fractured or discolored
  • To restore multiple teeth for a full smile makeover
  • To close gaps between teeth
  • To improve the appearance of teeth when they have worn edges or appeared crooked

Veneers allow you to totally transform aesthetics of your smile in an effective non-invasive manner.


A dental crown fits over your entire tooth, right down to your gum line, replacing the natural tooth’s outer surface and masking decay, cracks or chips. Crowns are a long lasting way to improve the look of your smile.

In certain circumstances where the tooth has suffered major damage, a crown may be a better option than a veneer. These situations include teeth that are severely cracked or largely chipped and are causing ongoing pain, or where a root canal treatment has already taken place. In such cases a crown will be used to keep the tooth intact and prevent it from any further damage which could lead to an extraction becoming necessary.  Also, a crown may be used when having large fillings placed in a tooth.

Crowns are designed to match the look of surrounding teeth and generally improve the appearance of your smile as well as their masticatory functions.

Here are some uses for Dental Crowns:

  • To protect a tooth from breaking or to hold together parts of a cracked tooth.
  • To protect a tooth after a root canal treatment.
  • To restore a broken tooth or a tooth that has been severely worn down.
  • To cover and support a tooth with a large filling when there isn’t a lot of tooth left
  • To hold a dental bridge in place.
  • To cover severely discolored or crooked teeth.
  • To be placed on top of a dental implant.

If you’re considering a cosmetic treatment in Costa Rica, including crowns or veneers, consult with one of our experienced dentists at Meza Dental.

We provide a full range of cosmetic dentistry options. Contact us today for a free estimate and we’ll formulate a treatment plan that’s just right you.

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