Porcelain Veneers vs. Dental Crowns: What’s the difference?

Many of our patients visit our office unsure of which dental services are most appropriate for meeting their dental health needs and cosmetic goals. Porcelain veneers and dental crowns are two dental solutions that we commonly recommend to patients. While these two treatment options are similar in some ways, they are also very different. Here are the main differences between porcelain veneers and dental crowns that you need to know:

Porcelain Veneers only cover the front-facing portion of your tooth.

With porcelain veneers, the tooth restoration is designed to only cover the front-facing portion of the tooth. This is great for patients looking to conceal blemishes on their smile including bleach resistant tooth stains or minor chips. Porcelain veneers can also be utilized to make your smile appear more symmetrical and aligned. Dental crowns, on the other hand, conceal your entire tooth. This means that they require significantly more enamel removal than porcelain veneers. With dental crowns, your existing tooth is shaved down to its foundational core that supports the crown while allowing it to replace the complete exterior of your tooth. With porcelain veneers, only a small amount of enamel is removed to make space for the porcelain cap.

Dental Crowns are more restorative, Porcelain Veneers are more cosmetic.

Because porcelain veneers only replace a small portion of your natural tooth, they are typically utilized for more cosmetic purposes. While they can be utilized to conceal minor chips or cracks in your tooth, if the crack is too severe, a dental crown will be recommended. A dental crown takes a broken tooth and completely replaces it in order to help you regain your smile’s overall functionality. Typically, we see dental crowns being utilized for back molars which take on the most pressure during chewing or speaking while porcelain veneers are usually utilized for the front teeth which are shown off more when we smile.

The best way to know if porcelain veneers or dental crowns will work for you is to schedule a consultation with Dr. Banks. He will provide you with a thorough consultation and help you determine what is best for your smile. Every smile is different and requires its own unique treatment plan. Dr. Banks will work with you to come up with a personalized plan that is specifically designed for you.


2 Wisconsin Circle
Chevy Chase, MD 20815

Request Appointment

new patients 301.654.5878

current patients 301.654.5878 or Text Us


By Appointment Only
8:00am – 5:00pm
8:00am – 5:00pm
9:00am – 4:00pm
8:00am -4:00pm
By Appointment Only