I’ve really wanted to get my smile re-done for quite some time. I finally got up the courage to talk to my dentist about it. I’d decided on Lumineers because you don’t have remove any teeth. My dentist thinks it’s a horrible idea. He said all porcelain veneers, including Lumineers, are obvious. People will be able to tell my teeth are fake. Instead, he wants me to do crowns. I’m not thrilled with that option because it’s removing a lot of healthy tooth. That’s why I wanted Lumineers to begin with. Do I have any other options?
Stacey L. – Indiana
I wanted to clear up a couple of misconceptions in your question. Lumineers or other brands of porcelain veneers aren’t fake teeth. Your natural teeth will still be there. It’s just a thin wafer of porcelain bonded to your teeth.
Your dentist is confused. People will not be able to tell you’re wearing porcelain veneers if they’re done correctly. In this case, your best option is to switch dentists for your cosmetic work. I’m sure your dentist is a fine family dentist. He’s just not familiar enough with cosmetic work to do a decent job. Even if you talked him into do the procedure, you’d be disappointed in the results.
I wouldn’t do the porcelain crowns either. As you already know, crowns require a lot of tooth structure to be removed. You want to save healthy teeth.
My suggestion is you find a dentist who enjoys cosmetic work. Many great cosmetic dentists even offer a beautiful smile guarantee. However, if they’re a decent cosmetic dentist they’d likely suggest you get a brand other the Lumineers. I know they’re advertised as being no-prep and that sounds appealing to you. However, the Lumineers company insists dentists use their lab. Many expert cosmetic dentists feel their lab isn’t very artistic. Their veneers often end up opaque and bulky.
If it will put your mind at ease, tooth preparation for porcelain veneers is very different from dental crowns. Porcelain veneers only gently shave about 3mm of enamel. It’s about the width of a fingernail. You won’t really be able to tell much different between a prepared or unprepared tooth.
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