Tag Archives: Smile Makeover

Worried Dentist Ruined My Porcelain Veneer

I just had a set of porcelain veneers placed. I did like them but noticed one of them had a scratch on it. I mentioned it to him and he said it’s no problem he could even fix it before I left. I was thrilled and he bonded them on. Then he did some something he called “buffing out the scratch”. It looked fine and I left happy. It’s been a couple of days and now that tooth he buffed looks different from the rest of them. It looks duller. I’m worried something is wrong with it. Am I overreacting?

Alora

Dear Alora,

A single porcelain veneer being placed

No, you’re not overreacting. Your worry is quite founded in reality as well. It sounds like your dentist removed the scratch by removing the glazing. Not only is the glazing what gives your porcelain veneers their shine, but it’s also what protects them. Your veneers will quickly begin to pick up stains.

You need to have him replace this porcelain veneer. It’s best you call him right away. If you wait, he could try to say you did something to it. This way, if you call right away, he’ll have to admit it’s something he did.

Make Sure Your Dental Office Knows How to Care for Porcelain Veneers

Though as a patient this shouldn’t be your responsibility, it sounds like your dentist isn’t a true cosmetic dentist and doesn’t quite understand how he’s supposed to care for or repair porcelain veneers.

The key for you, in keeping them healthy, will be making sure your hygienist doesn’t use anything like a power prophy jet during your cleaning. It will take the entire glazing off your teeth.

When You Need an Expert Cosmetic Dentist

There isn’t a recognized specialty in cosmetic dentistry. A cosmetic dentist is actually just a general dentist who does cosmetic procedures. However, it isn’t something really taught in dental school. For a dentist to become skilled in it they have to invest in post-doctoral training.

However, it’s hard for patients to know who is trained and artistic. One way I’d recommend patients get an edge is by going to the mynewsmile.com website. They have a link to help patients find excellent cosmetic dentists in their area. All of them are pre-screened. Dentists can’t just pay to get listed, they have to show their technical knowledge, skill, and artistry.

This blog is brought to you by New Orleans Dentist Dr. Duane Delaune

Do I Need to Replace Every Crown for them to Match?

I’m kind of hoping you give me the answer I want, but am willing to follow your advice regardless. I had crowns on eight teeth on my top arch for a smile makeover. One of them became loose. I went back to my dentist. He said there is decay on the edge and the crown needs to be replaced. However, he wants me to replace all of them so they’ll match. I want my teeth to match but don’t have a ton of money. Is that really necessary?

Candace

Dear Candace,

A porcelain crown being placed over the prepared tooth

I think the biggest problem here is your dentist isn’t a cosmetic dentist. Was there a particular reason he gave you a makeover with dental crowns instead of with porcelain veneers? Veneers are the standard treatment for a smile makeover because it doesn’t require your teeth to be ground down the way crowns do.

While there’s nothing you can do about that now, and those teeth will always require crowns now that the tooth structure is gone, you don’t have to replace all of them in order to get them to match. Though, to get a good result you will have to use a different dentist for this procedure.

Your Crown Replacement Options

You basically have two choices here: replace them all at once or replace them one at a time. The benefit to doing them all at once isn’t for them to match. A great cosmetic dentist can match a single tooth. It’s more to save you time. You’d replace them all and be done.

If you do them one at a time, it means a new trip to the dentist every time one goes bad. That could get annoying. The benefit to that is you’re only having to fork out money a little at a time instead of all at once.

Either decision will still require you to find a skilled cosmetic dentist if you want an attractive result.

Finding a Cosmetic Dentist

I’m going to suggest you go to mynewsmile.com. They have a “find a cosmetic dentist” link. You simply input your zip code and the distance you’re willing to travel. They’ll provide a list of qualified cosmetic dentists for you. The best part about this is they’ve carefully screened every single one of them for both technical knowledge as well as artistic ability in their work. No matter which dentist on their list you choose, they can give you a gorgeous smile.

This blog is brought to you by New Orleans Dentist Dr. Duane Delaune.

Dentist Stained My Lumineers

I am so angry, but don’t know if I can do anything about it. Before getting my “smile makeover” my dentist and I discussed what I wanted it to look like. One thing I specifically said was how white I wanted them. Despite my instructions, he put a stain on my Lumineers. When I asked him about it he said, “I want smiles I do to look natural.” When I let him know I wasn’t thrilled, he said, “Well it’s certainly prettier than your natural smile.” I’m furious. Can anything be done?

Stephanie

Dear Stephanie,

Advertisement with Lumineers including a woman smiling and a single veneer being held by a tool

I understand your anger and have heard these type of stories so often it makes me sad. It’s so hard to get patients the information they truly need before getting their smile makeovers done. Here’s the thing, the only thing which guarantees a great result in your smile makeover is the dentist you choose. Too many patients think their family dentist is qualified.

I don’t blame the patients. They’re supposed to trust their medical and dental providers. However, doing proper smile makeovers aren’t taught in dental school. In order to be a great cosmetic dentist, your dentist would have had to invest in post-doctoral training at a reputable institute which trains in cosmetic dentistry.

It’s not a recognized specialty so it’s completely up to the dentist how much time and money they invest in this type of training. At the same time, there are companies (like the Lumineers company) which heavily markets their products to dentists as being “easy” to place because they’re not required to do tooth prep. While they may be easy to place, that doesn’t make them any easier to get a beautiful result.

Evidence Your Dentist Isn’t a Skilled Cosmetic Dentist

In dental school, dentists are taught that they know better than the patient and should tell them what to do. However, cosmetic dentistry is different. Notice your dentist said, “I want smiles I do to look natural.” What he’s not realizing is cosmetic dentistry is about what you want, not what he wants.

Additionally, he thinks a stain is what makes a smile look natural. But, patients who come for cosmetic work aren’t looking for a “natural” smile. They’re looking for a gorgeous smile.

Finally, he didn’t do a try in. Based on what you described, he didn’t let you see them before he permanently bonded on your porcelain veneers. Any cosmetic dentist worth his salt will use a temporary try-in paste to make sure the patient is satisfied before bonding them.

What to Do About Your Lumineers

You have a reason to get a refund. You gave your dentist specific instructions about the color. He ignored them. That means he didn’t have your permission to place those porcelain veneers. Tell him, either you get a refund or you’ll go to the dental board about him not following your instructions and then bonding them on without giving you an option.

Then, once you get your money back, go see an expert cosmetic dentist to have them redone. My suggestion to find the right dentist is to go to the mynewsmile.com website and use their “Find a Cosmetic Dentist” link. They only recommend expert cosmetic dentists who can create gorgeous smiles and know how to follow a patient’s instructions. In fact, most of them have a beautiful smile guarantee.

This blog is brought to you by New Orleans Dentist Dr. Duane Delaune.

Did I Make a Mistake Getting Porcelain Veneers?

I’m wondering if I made a mistake getting porcelain veneers. My teeth have been getting shorter and shorter recently and it was really beginning to bug me. My dentist suggested I get porcelain veneers. They were expensive but my dentist said they could make my teeth longer. I was excited about that. I went forward. I wasn’t crazy about how they turned out. While they are longer, they look a bit boxy. Plus, two of them have popped off. My dentist always puts them back on for free, but it does take time off work. I’m wondering if this was a mistake. I kept thinking for that much money they’d be beautiful, not just longer. Did I have unrealistic expectations?

Melanie

Dear Melanie,
A single porcelain veneer being placed

Porcelain veneers are a great way to remake your smile. I think the mistake is simply allowing your family dentist to do it instead of an expert cosmetic dentist. I have another concern aside from your dentist’s cosmetic skill. You mentioned your teeth have been getting shorter. That combined with your veneers popping off, makes me think you’ve been grinding your teeth at night. Your dentist should have recognized these signs.

It’s important this is dealt with or your teeth will continue to grind down until they’re nubs. Then, you’ll be forced to get a mouth full of porcelain crowns in order to chew. I’d be lying if I didn’t say I was concerned about your dentist not bringing this up.

There is a simple solution. You just need to wear a night guard and then it will protect your teeth and your porcelain veneers from being damaged any further.

Getting Gorgeous Porcelain Veneers

Getting a smile makeover is a bit like commissioning an artist to do your portrait. You want to research the artist carefully. They need to have post-graduate training. But, like any art, there also has to be some natural skill there. Your dentist needs an artistic eye. So, how is a patient to research all of that? Well, you could check their credentials, research their smile gallery, check their reviews, etc.

Fortunately, the mynewsmile.com website does all of that for you. If you go to their site and click on “Find a cosmetic dentist”, you simply input your zip code along with how far you’re willing to travel to get a beautiful smile and they’ll list all the expert cosmetic dentists within that range.

Best of Luck to you.
This blog is brought to you by New Orleans Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Duane Delaune.