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One Opaque Tooth

I have translucent teeth expcept for one of my top front teeth, which is opaque. When I look at pictures of my youth, both top front teeth were white. I did not fall or have any trauma to the tooth. I am not having success with whitening my translucent teeth to bring them up to the opaque tooth. Having this one opaque tooth ruins my smile. Would an in office whitening procedure work? My teeth are healthy, I don’t like the idea of shaving them down for veneers. Any suggestions?
– Pam from Connecticut

Teeth bleaching or whitening will not help your teeth match any better. In fact, it may make your smile look worse. Bleaching doesn’t work for any unevenness of color – it tends to accentuate unevenness. It will make your tranlucent teeth more translucent.

My recommendation would be to find an excellent cosmetic dentist and have the one tooth bonded or one porcelain veneer so that it matches the others. It won’t really require grinding the tooth down – at the most it would require a very slight amount of tooth preparation on the one tooth. There’s really no other way to get them right, if they look different.

But you need an excellent cosmetic dentist. The way you are describing this sounds very tricky – the dentist and the laboratory would have to be able to mimic the translucency of the translucent tooth without making the veneer or bonding actually translucent. It can be done – but it’s not a job for your typical family dentist.