My permanent teeth are too small

2012.06.30

My permanent teeth are embarrassingly small. I am 38 years old, but my teeth are the size of a 7 year old child’s teeth. I am a corporate banking professional, and I am frequently giving presentations at our branches. I feel very self conscious when I smile. What can be done to make my teeth look the size of adult teeth? Thanks in advance for your help. – Michaela T.

Michaela – Your concern about the size of your permanent teeth and the embarrassment that your teeth causes is understandable. Genetics or the environment can cause teeth to develop incorrectly.

There are two permanent procedures for which you might be a candidate—porcelain crowns and porcelain veneers.

A porcelain crown requires the natural tooth to be shaved down. The crown is placed over the natural tooth and it completely covers the tooth. A cosmetic dentist will make crowns that look like your natural teeth.

Porcelain veneers cover only the front of the teeth. Usually, teeth are lightly shaved before the veneers are placed. Veneers from a cosmetic dentist will have the color and translucency of natural teeth. They will give you a beautiful smile makeover.

You can schedule a consultation with a cosmetic dentist to find out your options and to get the best results. Cosmetic dentists are dental artists. Find one who has been specifically trained in cosmetic dentistry. You also can check the dentist’s credentials and his or her smile gallery for pictures of smile makeovers that the dentist has completed.

The blog post is courtesy of Lowell cosmetic dentist Dr. Michael Szarek.

What can be done to remove a stain on a porcelain veneer?

2012.06.28

I have six porcelain veneers on my upper front teeth. I’ve had them for years. The left canine veneer is starting to stain. More specifically there is a small gray stain near the margin. The color of the veneers is fine. Is there any way to remove the stain? Thanks! Sandy P. from Connecticut.

Sandy – It’s difficult to discern the problem without seeing your porcelain veneers and knowing how long you’ve had them.

Porcelain veneers are actually more stain-resistant than natural teeth, and they retain their color. If they do stain, it’s usually a result of something getting between the veneer and your tooth, or the glaze of the veneer is broken. Acid fluorides and power-polishing equipment can break the glaze.

If veneers are ten or twenty years old, it is possible that tiny particles are between the tooth and your veneers, as a result of leakage. The leakage can occur if the margin of the porcelain veneers breaks down. Microleakage must be addressed to prevent decay. In this case, the veneer will need to be replaced with a new one.

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