Is there anything about your smile that is embarrassing or preventing you from smiling? There’s no better time than now to finally step into the spotlight and show the rest of the world just how friendly you are with a new, attractive smile.
The good news is that most dental imperfections can be fixed these days and in some cases, dental veneers may be the best choice of treatment. Whether it’s crooked or chipped teeth, discoloured teeth or an imperfect bite, dental veneers can vastly improve one’s appearance and hence self esteem. From correcting discoloration to closing in gaps, this thin porcelain or resin composite material is shaped and placed over the front of your teeth to give you that bright, perfect smile you’ve always dreamed of.
Unlike crowns, your natural teeth remain largely intact with only a minimal amount altered to fit the veneer. In some instances, a veneer can be placed with essentially no alteration of the natural tooth.
Now, I bet you’re wondering, how much do veneers cost? Here’s the lowdown on how much you can expect to spend on your perfect pearly whites.
Let’s Talk Numbers. Exactly How Many Veneers Should I Get?
When it comes to determining the cost of dental veneers, there’s no one-size-fits-all answer.
Because everyone’s mouths are different, the total expenditure will depend on the number of teeth that need to be treated, the current condition of the teeth, your “bite” (how functional are your current teeth), your gum health and any other treatments necessary to idealize the esthetics, health and function of your teeth.
How many teeth will need to be treated partly depends on one’s cosmetic expectations. This can be determined by looking at your widest smile in a mirror and asking yourself the following questions:
- How many teeth do you show when you smile?
- If there are only a few teeth which you feel need treatment, are you happy with the colour, size and shape of the rest of your teeth?
This is very important because we will have to match/blend the veneers with your own teeth to make your smile look natural.
On average, most cases involve eight upper teeth. However, we may only need to do four, and in others – up to 10 upper teeth. Depending of the amount of colour changes planned and how much the lower teeth show, there may be a need to do some whitening or other treatment for the lower teeth also.
The Type of Material Used for Veneers
There are two types of veneers to consider: porcelain and composite (also called resin…essentially it is a white filling material that is placed on top of the tooth). While both can be used for a variety of esthetic situations and the results can be amazing, either approach should begin with a thorough cosmetic analysis (see photos below) to access the patient’s desires, needs and to be able to see the potential results before any permanent treatment is begun.
Mock-up of potential result
Final porcelain veneer
When patients say they have or want veneers, they are usually referring to the porcelain variety. Porcelain is the most ideal material to use for the long term. Although there is no man made material that is as strong as tooth enamel, porcelain is the best material that is available from both a strength and esthetic standpoint. There are a variety of porcelain compositions available today, and each has its pros and cons with respect to strength, esthetics and long term durability. Nevertheless, porcelain veneers are stronger than composite resin veneers and do not change colour or stain.
Generally, porcelain veneers take 2 dental visits to apply….you can expect about 10-15 years from a porcelain veneer although they could last longer than average. The cost varies from around $1,100 to $2,000 per tooth based on fees in the Vancouver area.
Note: Our current porcelain veneer prices at the time of writing this article are $1,250 per tooth.
Final porcelain veneers
Porcelain isn’t the only option when it comes to restoring the beauty of your teeth – composite materials can also improve the look of your smile. Composite is another name for a white filling and is a more affordable option…some dentists and people also refer to this as “bonding”. This tooth-coloured plastic and glass mixture can also change the colour and shape of your teeth. The cost generally ranges from around $300 to $500 per tooth – once again, the total will depend on how many teeth are necessary to treat.
While it’s significantly lower cost than porcelain, composite veneers are more likely to stain, chip or break. On average, composite veneers last between 5 and 7 years before they’ll need to be redone again although just as with porcelain they can last longer.
Note: They are more likely to stain for people who smoke or drink a lot of tea. Tea stains more than coffee.
Bonding six teeth
Bonding four teeth
Other Veneers Costs to Consider
Usually, there is an initial consultation and exam for veneers that costs between $100 and $200 dollars. Note: Our fee is $100.
During the consultation, we’ll do a mockup of your smile in wax. While we generally do not charge for this step, we do charge for the lab fee. Lab costs are required before we start and are $50 per tooth.
Overall, the average cost for most patients we have treated is in the ballpark of $9,000 to $10,000. This total is based on eight teeth and the use of porcelain, which is the most popular and long-lasting of the two materials.
If these costs are an issue there are ‘cheaper’ options for a ‘toothy transformation,’ such as composite bonding/veneers as mentioned above, bleaching or using composite for the back teeth and placing porcelain on the front teeth only. The first step to creating the smile of your dreams is to book a consultation.