My teeth are worn and discolored. I am going to make appointments with 2 different dentists to see what they recommend. I just need some direction before I see the dentists so I don’t get oversold or undersold. Should I go with one who recommends porcelain veneers or one who recommends porcelain crowns? Jon
Jon – A conservative, conscientious dentist will first examine your teeth to identify the cause of the wear and discoloration.
If the wear is caused by bruxism, or teeth grinding, that issue must be addressed first. Many patients who grind their teeth are not good candidates for porcelain veneers. The force on the teeth from grinding can fracture a veneer.
An experienced cosmetic dentist will recommend the most conservative treatment. If you do not grind your teeth, and if you have adequate healthy tooth structure, porcelain veneers are a more conservative treatment than porcelain crowns. Teeth are minimally prepared before the veneers are bonded to them. If preparation is required, only 0.5mm to 1mm of the enamel surface is removed. A disadvantage is that veneers cost more than crowns. Porcelain crowns require reducing the size of natural teeth so that crowns will fit over them. This is a process that reduces a significant amount of tooth structure, and it cannot be reversed.
It is possible that your smile can be rejuvenated with teeth whitening and dental composite. An artistic cosmetic dentist can manipulate composite to match the characteristics and translucence of your natural teeth. This is a minimally invasive treatment that will last for years if you take proper care of it. Some patients only require cosmetic contouring, which shapes the teeth to help them appear symmetrical and balanced.
When looking for dentists with whom you can have a consultation, we recommend that you find experienced cosmetic dentists who have artistic talent. A cosmetic dentist’s goal is to help you achieve a smile that is both healthy and beautiful. He or she may recommend one or more treatment options to help you achieve your goals for your smile. An examination and diagnostic studies are required to accurately inform you of your options.
This post is sponsored by Lowell, MA dentist Dr. Michael Szarek.