I had four porcelain veneers placed for my front teeth. I’m having a couple of issues even a few weeks out even though he told me these would last for ten years. First, I wasn’t thinking about how wide my smile was so the teeth next to the porcelain veneers look very dark comparatively. If I whiten my teeth will it damage the porcelain veneers? My second issue is a bit more serious. Two days after they were bonded one of the porcelain veneers popped off while I was eating dinner. My dentist bonded it back on saying my bite was a bit off and he needs to shorten the veneer a bit. I wasn’t sure why he hadn’t caught that ahead of time but was grateful he was willing to fix it now. A few days later, the same porcelain veneer fell off again while I was eating donuts. Now he’s saying I need to go to a dental crown. I have healthy teeth and don’t want to grind down the healthy tooth structure. Is the crown my only option?
I am going to say right off the bat that you need a new dentist for this work to be repaired properly. Most patients don’t realize that cosmetic dentistry isn’t a recognized specialty. This means any dentist can call themselves a cosmetic dentist regardless of how much cosmetic training they have had. Dental school focuses on general dentistry from more of an engineering standpoint. To do beautiful cosmetic dentistry requires a significant amount of post-doctoral training. I find it difficult to believe your current dentist has invested in this.
That being said, let’s go over your questions so you can get the smile you paid for. We’ll start with the color. It wasn’t your job to think about how wide your smile is. It was your dentists. He should have known that most smiles are 8-10 teeth wide. The standard recommendation is to have patients whiten their teeth before their porcelain veneers are made. He didn’t do that. There is good news, though. It is not too late to fix this now. Teeth whitening will only affect your natural tooth structure. There will be no damage to your porcelain veneers.
As for the second issue with your porcelain veneer falling off. This is also the fault of your dentist. Do not let him put you in a dental crown. This will grind down your healthy tooth structure and that is not what you want. Nor do you need it. Let’s say, for argument’s sake, that your bite was off. If your porcelain veneer had been properly bonded on to begin with the veneer would have been more likely to chip. It wouldn’t just fall off.
What I’d like you to do is look on the mynewsmile.com website. Find a cosmetic dentist they have listed in your area. These are the dentists who have the training you need. Any one of them will be able to properly re-bond your porcelain veneer.
This blog is brought to you by Naperville Cosmetic Dentist Dr. David Newkirk.