If you notice that you have a chipped front tooth or mild spacing between your teeth, veneers or dental bonding may be the right solution.

While these two different procedures have a bit in common, they actually are quite different—although they can often be used to treat the same issues. But, what are they? And why would you want to choose veneers over other options?


They are pieces of porcelain that are placed over the front surface of a tooth that has been damaged from trauma or a cavity.

Essentially, a dentist will bond a veneer to on top of the front surface of the original tooth, and this will help to correct certain cosmetic issues, such as:

    • Cracked/fractured teeth
    • Mild spacing between teeth
    • Rotated teeth
    • Discoloration and mild stain that cannot be bleached
    • Malformed or malpositioned teeth

While porcelain veneers may involve removal of part of the tooth’s original surface, they are not as aggressive or as invasive as full coverage dental crowns.


For people that have minor cosmetic issues that they would like to fix, this may be a better option than dental crowns or veneers. The process involves the chairside/immediate application of a composite resin (tooth colored) filling. These bonded composite resins can address similar issues, but may not be considered as permanent or as strong as its porcelain counterpart.

West Mobile Dental Care is conveniently located in Mobile, AL but proudly services Daphne, Prichard, Montrose, Fairhope, Tillman’s Corner and other neighboring communities.


As you can see, these two procedures have a lot in common. So what exactly is the difference?

The first key difference is the material being used. Generally, veneers are made with porcelain or ceramics. On the other hand, resin or plastic is used for dental bonding. The process involved with veneers and dental bonding is also quite different in a number of ways. When you have veneers placed, there is a process of removing a minimal amount of the surface of the teeth that are being repaired.

An impression is taken of the teeth that is sent to a lab for custom fabrication. On the other hand, during dental bonding the enamel is generally left alone, and instead the resin is bonded in the space caused by the fracture or cavity in the existing tooth. This is also a much faster process, which may allow a patient to finished with the procedure within one visit.


The process isn’t unlike most other restorative trips to the dentist. Still, it’s important to understand what steps you will be going through to first see if you need them to begin with, and then have them properly fabricated.

The first step of the process is a simple consultation. Your dentist will take a look at your tooth or teeth that are in need of repair, and they will discuss with you different cosmetic treatment possibilities. If the issues aren’t too complex or if only minimal tooth structure is missing, they may suggest bonding.

If significant tooth is missing and the tooth is compromised, they may suggest a crown to surround and protect the entire tooth. Falling in the middle of this spectrum would be the placement of a veneer-providing more predictability than the bonding but not as aggressive as a crown.

This will also involve discussions of which option is best for you for different reasons—including the price point. While porcelain is the most popular, other options include: composite, prepless, and minimal prep.

Once you’ve made the decision as to what sort of veneer is the best fit for you, you will set a preparation appointment. During this appointment, the dentist will remove a layer of the enamel of the tooth or teeth that are being repaired. While most people find this procedure painless, some dentists will offer local anesthesia.

After preparation, your dentist will make a mold or impression of your teeth to ensure that you have the perfect shape to your veneers. The impression will be sent to a lab for custom fabrication.

The final visit will involve placement. This visit will begin with the doctor ensuring that they match your adjacent teeth’s color and shape. A cement will be applied, and they will be placed and dried.

At this point, they are permanently placed, and you can smile with your new, beautiful teeth!


Make sure that you make an appointment with the dentist as soon as possible for some of the more severe issues. You don’t want to risk them getting worse, or causing other issues with your teeth, gums, cheeks or tongue. If the changes are more cosmetic, then the choice of when to fix your dental issues is up to you (unless your dentist suggests otherwise).

Please, contact our team of dental professionals today regarding dental veneers. We also are will to consult for other potential dental procedural needs or cosmetic requests such as lumineers, whitening, implants and more.