Can my porcelain veneers be reshaped and darkened?

2018.05.09

In February, I went to a large dental practice for porcelain veneers because I saw commercials that said they specialize in veneers and that I could get the best results possible. I went in for a consultation and even got a computerized before and after picture taken. The veneers were more affordable than I expected, but they also look horrible. The dentist there assured me that I would get a completely natural look, but the teeth really look generic. They look like off the shelf veneers that really don’t belong in my mouth. The teeth are also too straight and too white. If you could have seen how happy the dentist was about the look of my smile, you would probably laugh. He even asked me if I was willing to do a photo for the company with the chances of it being published in one of their brochures or commercials. I refused so quickly. I feel like my smile has no personality and that it is detracting from my looks. Is there any way a cosmetic dentist can correct my veneers or will I have to start all over? – Lizi

Photo of dental forceps holding a single porcelain veneers, from the office of accredited cosmetic dentist Dr. Szarek of Lowell, MA.

Porcelain veneer

Lizi – Your experience is unfortunate but common. Although mega dental practices can quickly provide you with porcelain veneers, the results might not reflect your personality. A cosmetic dentist will provide you with a smile makeover that compliments your facial features, personality, and preferences.

Can Your Porcelain Veneers Be Corrected?

  • After porcelain veneers are made and bonded to your teeth, no changes can be made to them. The shape and color are permanent.
  • Attempts to change your porcelain veneers would likely ruin them.
  • Your veneers will need to be replaced with new ones.

You can request a consultation with an experienced cosmetic dentist. If you have pictures of your smile before you received porcelain veneers, it will help the dentist design a complimentary smile for you. Check the credentials of several dentists and request consultations. Be prepared to take notes and compare your options.

The good news is that you can receive a natural-looking smile that you’re completely comfortable with. A well-balanced smile can improve your social life and your quality of life.

This post is sponsored by Lowell accredited cosmetic dentist Dr. Michael Szarek.

 

Are you interested in advances in cosmetic dentistry? Learn how San Diego cosmetic dentist Dr. Doan uses Bioclear as an alternative to porcelain veneers for enhancing smiles.

How long should porcelain veneers last?

2018.03.14
Photo of dental forceps holding a single porcelain veneers, from the office of accredited cosmetic dentist Dr. Szarek of Lowell, MA.

Porcelain veneers are bonded to your teeth

I got 6 porcelain veneers in June 2012 when I lived in Chicago. At first, I was pretty happy with them except they didn’t look as white as I wanted. I got my teeth whitened BEFORE I got veneers and the veneers are not quite as white as my teeth. Anyway, everything was going well until the veneers started chipping in last summer. There is a little chip on my right incisor and a small one on my right front tooth. I called the dentist’s office where I got the veneers (I now live in MA) and she told me that it’s probably time to replace the veneers. I was furious. At $1200 per veneer and not even 6 years later, she tells me I probably need to replace them. I asked her how long veneers should last and she told me that the brand I chose (I didn’t choose the brand. I know nothing about how to choose a brand of porcelain veneers.) is known for chipping. First I am wondering how after 6 years she even remembers what brand I have and why she is lying about it being my choice. So I am guessing that there is another issue that she is not going to talk about. Shouldn’t porcelain veneers last longer than 6 years? Ceyda

Ceyda,

Yes, porcelain veneers should last longer—much longer—than six years. If quality veneers are properly bonded to your teeth, and if you take proper care of them, they can last 15 to 20 years. You are nowhere near the lifecycle of quality veneers, so quality must be the issue.

  • Brand – It is possible that the dentist who placed your veneers chose an inferior brand. That occurs sometimes to keep costs down and make getting veneers more enticing for patients. But as you have experienced, if they don’t last, what good is it?
  • Bonding – Another possibility is that your veneers were not correctly bonded to your teeth. It takes a lot of skill and the expertise of a highly trained cosmetic dentist to bond veneers to last. If they are poorly bonded or weak, they can chip.

Unfortunately, you probably do need new veneers. This time find an experienced cosmetic dentist in your area. If you can find one who is accredited, or who has extensive training in aesthetic or cosmetic dentistry, it will help you get amazing results. Select a few top cosmetic dentists first, have consultations with them, and compare your options before you select a provider for your new veneers.

This post is sponsored by Lowell, MA American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry accredited cosmetic dentist Dr. Michael Szarek.

Six Things You Should Know About Porcelain Veneers before You Get Them

2018.01.30
Photo of dental forceps holding a single porcelain veneers, from the office of accredited cosmetic dentist Dr. Szarek of Lowell, MA.

Porcelain veneers are bonded to your teeth

Porcelain veneers can provide a stunning smile makeover, but there are six things you should know about them before making the investment.

1. Great Results Require a Cosmetic Dentist

Porcelain veneers are a cosmetic improvement to your teeth. So the dentist you choose for your smile makeover should be a cosmetic dentist—an artist. Whether you want a super-white celebrity smile or a simple, natural-looking smile that complements your face, you need a cosmetic dentist. Why? Consider the facts:

  • Porcelain doesn’t automatically produce natural-looking results. If you want a smile makeover that looks natural, you need a dentist and ceramist who know how to manipulate porcelain so it has the color, characteristics, and translucency of natural teeth.
  • Bonding techniques are critical to the life of your porcelain veneers. Veneers that are improperly bonded to your natural teeth can slip, loosen, or fall off.
  • The shape and form of your veneers determine whether they complement your lips and other facial features. Only a cosmetic dentist can refine the details.

2. They Are Permanent

Your natural teeth are prepared before you receive porcelain veneers. This involves lightly shaving them to prevent the veneers from looking bulky over your teeth. After your teeth are prepared, it isn’t possible to reverse the process. You will always need veneers or some other form of cosmetic dentistry over your teeth.

3. Don’t Ask for a Specific Brand

  • Dentists become comfortable with various brands of veneers for a variety reasons.
  • The dentist’s skill level, the results produced, and other factors determine which brands a dentist uses.
  • Avoid asking your dentist for a specific brand. You might choose a brand the dentist isn’t comfortable with, and if you insist on it, the results might not look good.
  • Ask your dentist which brands he or she uses and why. The response can build your confidence in the dentist, instead of in a certain brand. If you select a cosmetic dentist, you can trust you’ll get great results.

4. Try Them On

You won’t have to ask a true cosmetic dentist to let you try on a trial set of your customized veneers. It will be part of the process. But you should know that in order to really see how the finished product—your porcelain veneers—will look and feel, you have to try on temporaries. If your dentist doesn’t offer you the opportunity to try on trial veneers, beware. And be certain to try on the final product before it’s permanently bonded to your teeth.

5. Ask About a Guarantee

A skilled cosmetic dentist can guarantee that you’ll love your new smile with porcelain veneers. Several factors make it possible to guarantee your satisfaction:

  • The dentist’s training, skill, and eye for beauty
  • Your dentist should ask for your feedback and preferences throughout the process of designing and creating the veneers
  • Skilled dentists use a master ceramist to craft the final product

Ask your dentist what he or she does to ensure your smile makeover will be exactly what you want.

6. Don’t Let Cost Alone Make the Decision for You

Porcelain veneers are an investment. So don’t let cost alone determine which dentist you choose. A highly skilled cosmetic dentist who uses quality materials and who is picky about the results will have higher fees than other dentists.

We recommend that you schedule consultations with at least two cosmetic dentists. If you can find an accredited cosmetic dentist in your area, you’ll likely get amazing results. Ask to see before-and-after photos of smile makeovers with porcelain veneers for actual patients of the dentist. You can get the celebrity smile—or the simple, but stunning smile makeover—you’ve always wanted.

This post is sponsored by Lowell, MA dentist Dr. Michael Szarek.

Can I get my porcelain veneers removed and go back to my natural teeth?

2017.08.30

Although I’ve had the same dentist since 2002, after getting porcelain veneers from him, I found out the hard way that he knows nothing about cosmetic dentistry. I guess I chose him because I trusted the other work he has done for me even though it wasn’t cosmetic. The reason I regret my decision is the way the veneers look. Although he took his time, the veneers are unnaturally square and unnaturally white. They actually look like squares. There is no way I can hide the fact that I don’t like the veneers. I don’t want to hurt my dentist’s feelings, but there is no way I can continue like this. I want the veneers off and just go back to my natural teeth, but I don’t trust my dentist to do it. I’m also concerned about going back to him for my regular checkup only for him to find out that I took all of his hard work off my teeth. What’s the best way for me to handle this? Mareesa

Mareesa – Many patients who received porcelain veneers from a dentist who isn’t highly trained in cosmetic dentistry express similar disappointment.

Can Porcelain Veneers Be Removed?

  • Unfortunately, porcelain veneers can’t be removed for you to go back to your natural teeth again. But they can be removed and replaced with new porcelain veneers.
  • The color, shape, and translucence of porcelain veneers cannot be changed.
  • A skilled cosmetic dentist ensures you’re completely satisfied with temporary veneers before they are made. You are given opportunity to wear temporary veneers for a week or two to get used to them, to let friends and family see how your new smile looks, and to decide if you love your temporary veneers or if you want any changes made.

Your description of what happened with your veneers shows that your dentist lacks sufficient skill, training, and artistry to create a beautiful smile. Even if you asked him to give you new porcelain veneers, you probably wouldn’t like the results.

We recommend that you find at least two accredited cosmetic dentists and schedule consultations with them. Each dentist will take a quick look at your veneers and let you know what he or she can do to provide you with veneers that you will love.

If you speak with your dentist, he might be able to give you at least a partial refund—if not a full refund. You can choose to use the money returned to you to get the smile you want.

This post is sponsored by Lowell, MA dentist Dr. Michael Szarek.

 

I hate my porcelain veneers and want to go back to my natural teeth

2017.04.17

I hate my porcelain veneers. I want them removed and I want to go back to my natural teeth. I’ve been seeing this dentist for about 7 years. He is quite confident in his skills. If you ask him, he can do any and everything that has to do with dentistry. He does implants, cosmetic dentistry. You name it. He received extra training to learn how to do porcelain veneers. He showed me some pictures of patients he did veneers on. Although he says he has done hundreds of veneers, I probably saw about 20 to 30 sets of photos for different patients. The pics looked good to me but my veneers don’t look good. And something about them is not right. When I floss my teeth, the floss gets hung up on on the side of 3 of my 8 veneers. There is another issue that is difficult to explain to my dentist but the veneers seem to create a lisp in my speech. The lisp is inconsistent so of course when I complained about it to my dentist, he had me read a few paragraphs and never once could we hear the lisp. So far nothing has been done. Just a series of appointments and exams where my dentist can’t find anything wrong. I’m exhausted. Can I just ask him to take off the veneers so I can go back to my natural teeth? What do patients usually do when their veneers are a hassle? Thanks. Janet

Janet – When your porcelain veneers are causing more stress than enjoyment, and your dentist doesn’t know what to do about it, the best thing to do is to get a second opinion.

Usually, your natural teeth are prepared before porcelain veneers are placed. If that’s true in your case, a small amount of your outer tooth structure was removed to ensure the veneers fit well and don’t look bulky. Some of the reasons you can’t go back to your natural teeth are listed below.

  • Removing the outer layer leaves unprotected teeth vulnerable to decay.
  • Your tooth structure is altered, so your natural teeth won’t look normal.
  • Your teeth will be very sensitive to heat and cold.

Although your dentist has received training in cosmetic dentistry, it wasn’t enough to give him insight on how to properly place veneers. Both your speech and the structure of the veneers are affected, so it’s time to get a second opinion.

You could ask your dentist to remove and replace the veneers, but you might get the same results. Schedule a consultation with at least two cosmetic dentists to help you select a provider to restore your teeth. If you can find an accredited cosmetic dentist in your area, his or her expertise will help you get the best results.

This post is sponsored by Lowell, MA dentist Dr. Michael Szarek.