Tag Archives: porcelain veneers

Are Lumineers Bad For Your Teeth?

I’ve been looking into my smile makeover options and was excited about the prospect of Lumineers because my dentist told me they don’t require any grinding down of your teeth. However, as I’ve looked online, I see a lot of mixed information about them. Some love them and some say that they destroyed their smile. Should I be concerned?

Alexis

Dear Alexis,

An advertisement for Lumineers

Lumineers won’t destroy your smile on their own. That is why there are mixed reviews. If you have a dentist who is skilled in cosmetic dentistry, then you have a better chance at a successful outcome than if you have a dentist who hasn’t invested a lot of time and training in learning cosmetic work.

That being said, there are two big problems with Lumineers. The first is that they are heavily marketed to inexperienced cosmetic dentists as being easy to place because they are ultra thin, which Lumineers says makes them no-prep.

While an occasional smile can get away with a no-prep makeover, most need at least some tooth preparation or else the smile ends up looking bulky. Some have even described it as having horse teeth.

Your dentist was mistaken in saying that your teeth will need to be ground down with another brand. That is simply not the case. The only procedure that would require your teeth to be ground down is with dental crowns. For porcelain veneers, you only need about the depth of a fingernail gently shaved to make room for the porcelain veneers.

Your dentist’s claim gives me pause to think he is not experienced enough in cosmetic dentistry to give you a beautiful result.

The second issue with Lumineers is their lab. The company that owns them forces dentists to use their lab, which is not known for producing beautiful results.

In your place, I would not worry about the brand as much as the dentist. Ask to see some before and after pictures of porcelain veneer procedures they’ve done. If you like their results, you should be fine. Then, let them pick the brand that will give you the look you want.

This blog is brought to you by Phoenix Dentist Dr. Hillary Peck.

Lumineers Disaster. What Should She Do?

I have a situation. I spent a ton of money getting Lumineers on my top six teeth. When I first went in, I told this dentist that I have had two dental bonding procedures done on my teeth that has made them look a bit bulky and I’d like that to be corrected with my Lumineers. The dentist assured me the Lumineers people knew exactly what they were doing. They did provide an image of what my smile would look like when they were completed and I was really excited about that. However, the result turned out nothing like expected. The closest I can explain it is saying I now have horse teeth. They are bulky and I have a huge overbite. My top teeth actually come out to the middle of my lower lip. They told me my muscles would adjust. I’ve been in tears since they bonded it. Is there any way to get my money back?

Catherine

Dear Catherine,

Lumineers Advertisement

I cringed when I read your dentist’s comment that the Lumineers people will know exactly what to do. There are two things wrong with that statement. First, it is the dentist who is supposed to know exactly what to do and give the laboratory specific instructions. Think about it like a doctor writing a prescription and the pharmacy filling that prescription. If the doctor writes the wrong prescription, there is no way for the pharmacist to know that. They can only do what they’ve been told. Second, the laboratory that does Lumineers’ work is not known for its beautiful results.

Getting a refund, however, could be tricky. Because cosmetic dentistry is not a recognized specialty, which means it is judged by the standards of general dentistry. That means to get a refund, it doesn’t matter what the results look like, but rather whether or not the smile is functional. If it is, all you can do is appeal to your dentist’s sense of pride in his or her work. If that doesn’t matter to them, I would tell them you’ll be posting a review about how they don’t care whether their “smile makeovers” are attractive or even feel comfortable in or mouth.

I’m sorry for what you went through.
This blog is brought to you by Phoenix Dentist Dr. Hillary Peck.

How Can I Make My Lumineers Last Longer?

Hi there,

I want a new smile, and am interested in getting porcelain veneers. My cosmetic dentist works with Lumineers, so I was thinking of getting them. However, I want my smile makeover to last a long time. What can I do to make sure my Lumineers last 15-20 years?

Sidney, from Amarillo, TX

 

Hi Sidney,

It is good that your dentist is comfortable working with Lumineers. The first step to making sure your cosmetic dental work lasts a long time is choosing an expert cosmetic dentist. Lumineers are a type of ultra-thin porcelain, but they are placed directly over your natural teeth with no preparation. For this reason, Lumineers can look bulky or unnatural if not placed with skill and care.

You can keep your oral hygiene routine the same at home, as neither tooth brushes, tooth paste, nor mouth wash can harm porcelain. Keep up with your regular dental appointments to prevent gum disease. Also, be sure to let your oral hygienist know you have veneers, to avoid any harsh tools that can leave scratches.

Porcelain may be durable but it can be stained. Coffee and red wine are major culprits, as can be tobacco use. Try to use a straw when drinking coffee or red wine in order to minimize contact with your teeth.

Lumineers can also be ground down like your natural teeth, so make your dentist aware if you grind your teeth. A night guard will take the pressure off your veneers at night, and can prevent any fracturing.

This blog post is brought to you by Phoenix  Dentist, Dr. Hillary Peck, of Peck Family Dentistry.

 

Lumineers Disaster

I went into my dentist for a smile makeover. He gave me four Lumineers. When I went there, I was very specific with him that I wanted a white smile. Yet, when my Lumineers came in and were placed, I noticed they weren’t white like we’d discussed. I tried to like them, but after a few days, I called him. I expressed that I didn’t like the color. That’s when he told me he placed a stain on them so they’d look “normal”. I was quite disappointed to hear that as it went against my expressed desires. He offered to take the stain off. That idea thrilled me. I went there with high hopes. Those hopes were dashed when I saw the results. Essentially, all he did was drill off the top layer. This made the teeth look dull and uneven, which is even worse. Do I have any way of affordably getting this fixed?

Brandon.

Dear Brandon,

A porcelain veneer being placed on a tooth

The smile makeover procedure you had reminds me a little to much of the middle-grade books, A Series of Unfortunate Events. I can tell from the way you described things that your dentist is either fairly new at cosmetic dentistry and is dipping his toes in the smile makeover waters, or he’s just completely incompetent. Because Lumineers is highly marketed to inexperienced cosmetic dentists as being easier to place than other brands of porcelain veneers, I suspect (or maybe hope) it is the former.

Let’s start with the fact that he did four Lumineers. Most people’s smiles are around eight to ten teeth wide. If you don’t want a bi-color smile, you have two choices. First, you can get that many porcelain veneers. A great option if you can afford it. However, not everyone can. In that case, your second option is to have your teeth whitened before you have your veneers made. This way the teeth will be close enough in color to make sense and blend.

The next disastrous decision is he stained them. Yes, you said you wanted a white smile, but your dentist thought, “I’m the professional and know better.” So, he put a stain on them to make them look like regular teeth. This is an attitude taught in general dental school. However, people paying for a new smile don’t want “regular” teeth. They want gorgeous teeth. This is why dentists who invest in post-doctoral training in smile makeovers learn the opposite. You aren’t creating normal smiles. Instead, you are creating your patient’s dream smile.

Amateur move number three is him bonding them on without you getting a look at them. True cosmetic dentists will use a temporary try-in paste, give you plenty of time to look at the veneers in various lightings, and decide if you are thrilled with them. If you’re not, they don’t get bonded on. The dentist will make the changes necessary to achieve the results you want. You’re paying for a stunning smile. You should get one.

His Disastrous Lumineers “Fix”

Finally, let’s get into your dentist’s “fix” for his misjudgment. What he should have done when you told him this wasn’t the color you agreed to was to start over and provide you with new Lumineers. That, however, would cost him time and money. So, he takes a short cut and drills off the stain. While this ruined your Lumineers, this is actually good news for you.

Because he damaged them, he is now obligated to fix them. I would not just get a refund or have him re-do them. He’s shown a disregard for your wishes, as well as a lack of commitment to the quality of his work. What you need to do is tell him you would like him to cover the cost of another dentist replacing them.

Before deciding on a second dentist, look at their smile gallery. Make sure there are before and after pictures of cases they’ve done personally, not just stock photos. Even then, only go forward if you absolutely love the after results they acheived.

This blog is brought to you by Phoenix Dentist Dr. Hillary Peck.

Why Doesn’t My Crown Match?

Hello there,

I had a discolored front tooth, so my dentist made me a porcelain crown. It’s well made, but it’s an unnatural color.  I’m not happy with it, but it’s already cemented into my mouth. My dentist is willing to redo the crown, but should I go see my same dentist? Or try to find someone who specializes in crowns? I went to my family dentist because I thought it was most affordable, but I’m worried I should have gone to a cosmetic dentist in the first place.

Larry, from Rome, NY

Hello Larry,

If cost is that much of a factor, and you are willing to give your dentist another chance, stay with your current dentist. He sounds like he is willing to work with you so you can get a crown that matches your teeth. However, if you want a perfect-looking crown, you should look into starting over with a cosmetic dentist.

Your dentist sounds like he realizes he made a mistake with your crown, and is trying to make it right. Matching a crown to the front teeth takes a lot of skill. After each try-in, it must be sent back to the lab before a successful color match can be made. Even a skilled dentist or ceramist will take several tries before they can make a natural-looking match.

Your dentist was likely inexperienced in making natural-looking crowns. He may not have known how much time or effort it would take to make a crown for a front tooth.

A sign of an inexperienced dentist is when they ask to crown both front teeth, in order to ensure a color match. While this is one way to make sure the shades match, it does add an expense to the crown procedure .

One suggestion you can make to your dentist is to ask him to take photos of your smile using a high-tech intra-oral camera. This can help him get the most natural looking colors to match your future crown. Make sure the  pictures of your smile are taken under natural lighting can help your dentist match your crown to your natural tooth’s color. If he lacks the skill, the technology, or is unwilling to try, your best bet would be to go to a different cosmetic dentist and start over.

This blog post is brought to you by Scottsdale affordable dentist, Dr. Hillary Peck, of Peck Family Dentistry

 

 

 

 

Can I Get Cosmetic Dentistry at a Discount?

Hi,

I really dislike my smile. Many of my teeth are crooked or broken – my lateral incisors nearly stick straight out! I don’t have any photos of myself smiling as a child because I’ve always hated my teeth. I was wondering if there was a payment program I could sign up for to get a smile makeover? The majority of my teeth need to be redone, but I can’t afford it. Is there a way to get discounted cosmetic dentistry? I’d let them use my photos as promotional material, would that help me get a discount?

Sincerely,

Pam, from Sterling, Colorado

 

Hi Pam,

Unfortunately, offering the dentist the use of your photo in exchange for a smile makeover isn’t going to get you a discount. Most patients are so happy with their crowns or veneers that they agree to let the dentist use their photo anyway. So that isn’t the best bargaining chip.

The good news is, the dental field is full of dentists with integrity and empathy. Many dentists volunteer or work with charities to help others access care they may not otherwise get. Affordable dental offices understand that many people need extensive dental work, but lack the savings or insurance to get it.

Fortunately, many dentists offer payment plans or Care Credit to help patients afford the care they need. However, offering these options to a patient with bad credit or who couldn’t afford it in the first place can ruin the relationship between doctors and patients, so have an open and honest conversation with your dentist.

Avoid going to a “cheap” dentist for cosmetic work, as it can cost more in the long run. Luckily, many offices will let you make payments on your treatment, as long as it is fully paid for prior to your first appointment. You can also talk to you dentist to see which parts of your smile to prioritize. In your case, you probably want a treatment plan for lateral incisors.  Doing a little bit at a time is the most affordable way to access cosmetic dentistry.

This blog post is brought to you by Phoenix affordable dentist, Dr. Hillary Peck, of Peck Family Dentistry. Please note Dr. Peck is a licensed general dentist with years of experience in treating cosmetic dentistry cases.

 

Should I Get Lumineers?

Hi,

I’m writing to you because I have several chipped teeth I’d like to take care of.  They were covered with bonding material, but over the years it has worn down. I’m interested in a more permanent solution, such as  porcelain veneers to cover my teeth. I’m not sure about what type of porcelain veneer to get, and am interested in Lumineers because of their convenience. How should I go about finding a dentist to do my veneers? Do I need to go to a dentist especially for Lumineers?

Thank you,
Emi, Boston, Massachusetts

Hi Emi,

Thank you for your question. Lumineers are made from cerinate porcelain and are thinner than regular veneers. They can be bonded with no tooth preparation (roughing the tooth’s surface) so there is less discomfort and fewer visits required.

However, not every dentist is skilled at placing Lumineers. You should look for someone who has experience and education directly related to Lumineers. Pushing a dentist outside their comfort zone will not give you a good result.

Secondly, check the smile gallery of your prospective dentist. Make sure they have samples of Lumineers for you to see. Since Lumineers are placed over your existing tooth, they can appear bulky or thicker than natural teeth.

Still, finding a cosmetic dentist comfortable with placing Lumineers is the key to getting the best result with Lumineers. For example, at Dr. Hillary Peck’s Phoenix office, she will consult with patients to see if they are a good candidate for Lumineers. If Lumineers are not the best fit for you esthetically, a different brand of porcelain veneer will be suggested. A good cosmetic dentist will consider the patient’s smile design goals and esthetic concerns and not shoehorn in a one-size-fits-all solution. A cosmetic dentist will know whether Lumineers are the best solution for you.

I hope this helps. Good luck in your search. In your area, you should be able to find a good cosmetic dentist to help you.

This blog post is brought to you by Phoenix cosmetic dentist, Dr Hillary Peck, of Peck Family Dentistry.

Difference between lumineers and veneers

My two front teeth are badly messed up. One is too thin and misshapen, and the other is badly chipped. I know I have to do something.

Lumineers and porcelain veneers are both options I am considering. I visited a cosmetic dentist who suggested veneers, since my teeth are so badly damaged. However, I’m wondering which is the most durable option.

The procedure will take almost every penny I have to my name, so I want to be very confident in the choice I go with.

Can you advise me on the two options, and let me know which is the best route to go?

Thank you,
Emily

Emily,
It’s important to understand the relationship between Lumineers and porcelain veneers. Lumineers are a brand of porcelain veneers, just like Ford and Honda are brands of cars.

The brand of veneers used by a dentist varies, as does the skill level of dentists who are veneer providers. There are dentists who are incredibly talented when it comes to procedures like this and attract a clientele including models, actors and actresses, and patients will fly across the country for their artistry. While there are other dentists who pay no attention to the appearance or beauty of a new smile, and focus only on the technicality of the procedures.

Considerations When Looking for a Lumineer Provider

Many dentists selected this profession because of their interest in fixing things, improving things, operating. Not all dentists further their education beyond these aspects. Therefore, not all dentists who perform cosmetic dentistry are cosmetic dentists.

One of the first steps is selecting an experienced cosmetic dentist. Because cosmetic dentistry is not recognized as a specialty endorsed by the American Dental Association, any dentist can claim to be a cosmetic dentist. Expert cosmetic dentists have education which extends beyond that taught in a dental program. They participate in continuing education hours which provide further training, and they have in-depth experience in many cosmetic dentistry procedures.

Also pay attention to the reviews left by other dental patients, as well as the dentist’s smile gallery. A dentist’s gallery displays photos of before and after shots. Pay particular attention to those which have Lumineers or porcelain veneers. Look for traits in the smiles that you are hopeful to eventually see in yourself.

Also consider talking with the dentist. Many dentists offer a complimentary consultation, during which the patient is given a brief amount of time to ask questions. This will give you an opportunity to determine the dentist’s opinion on Lumineers, and porcelain veneers in general.

It’s important to put more emphasis on selecting the right dentist. Then, he or she will help you determine what the right fit is for your veneers.

Good luck!

This article was brought to you by the office of Phoenix Lumineer provider, Dr. Hillary Peck.

Are lumineers a good option for your teeth?

Many dental professionals have differing opinions regarding Lumineers. Below is a breakdown of information to aid you in determining if they are the best dental option for you.

How do Lumineers work?

Just like Nike is a brand of shoes and Pepsi is a brand of soda, Lumineers is a brand of veneers. And, just like Pepsi and Nike, there are other brands of incredibly thin veneers, as well as unbranded options.

Ultra-thin veneers improve smiles in many ways

  • More vivid and uniform tooth coloring
  • Repair chips
  • Close gaps
  • Creates a celebrity-like smile

No-prep or low-prep option
Porcelain veneers are traditionally used to create a celebrity-like smile. In these veneers, a porcelain layer is applied to the front of the tooth, and around the sides and biting surface. A small portion of the tooth’s structure will need to be removed anywhere where the porcelain is, in order for the shell to fit naturally and create a uniform look. If a tooth is unstraight, or sticks out further than its neighbor teeth, more of the tooth’s structure may be taken off, in order for it to look straight once the veneer is on. Not all patients need such changes though, and for these cases, the ultrathin option is ideal. The are approximately as thick as a fingernail, and some of the brands claim that no prepping or removing of the tooth’s structure is necessary with the veneer be placed on top. However, this is rarely the case, as additional bulk is created, as well as an unnatural look, resulting in unhappy patients. Therefore, dentists tend to use the ultra-thin veneers as a low-prep alternative.

Do Lumineers harm your teeth?

Whether it be traditional, low-prep, or no-prep option, placing veneers will permanently alter the structure of a tooth. Even the no-prep alternative roughens the surface of the tooth to allow the veneer shell to adhere. Because the change to the tooth is permanent with any of these options, there will always need to be a covering on that tooth.

Ultra-thin veneers are a safe option

The ultra-thin veneers are an approach that is minimally invasive, yet can yield significant results. They are the effective choice when a smile makeover is desired, but teeth are not in need of extensive alterations. However, they are not always the most appropriate option for every scenario. For some people that are not a candidate for the ultra-thin option, the traditional porcelain veneers are a good alternative. A small amount of enamel is removed in both situations.

This article is brought to you by Phoenix Lumineer dentist, Dr. Hillary Peck.

Lumineers with Dental Problems?

I wondered if it’s still possible for me to get Lumineers if I have dental problems? I’ve got some mild gum disease as well as a tooth grinding habit. Am I still able to get my smile makeover?

Dana

Dear Dana,

Lumineers Advertisement

You’ve asked some great questions. Let’s start with your gum disease. While this won’t keep you from getting a smile makeover, it does absolutely need to be treated. If it progresses, you will eventually lose your teeth. Often people don’t realize how serious periodontal disease is. I would make this treatment a priority.

I’d love to know what type of protection your dentist has provided for you with your tooth grinding. As you grind your teeth, it wears them down. This leads to decay, cracked teeth, and even wearing them down to nubs, requiring a full-mouth reconstruction.

This will be a problem with Lumineers. Grinders tend to break off and chip their veneers. There is a simple solution. A custom-fitted night guard will protect both your teeth and your veneers, giving you a gorgeous smile for many years.

Are Lumineers the Right Choice?

We’ve noticed that many patients who want to remake their smile ask for Lumineers specifically. This is because they’re highly marketed. However, they are just one brand of porcelain veneers. Many cosmetic dentists don’t feel they are the best brand. A lot of that has to do with their lab, which tends not to have the best results.

Other brands of porcelain veneers allow the dentist to choose where they have the veneers made, but the Luminners brand is owned by DenMat and they insist their lab be used.

If you want a beautiful smile makeover, my suggestion is you allow the dentist to choose the brand and not insist on Lumineers. They’ll know what brand will best give you the look you’re trying to achieve.

This blog is brought to you by Phoenix Cosmetic Dentist Drs. Kevin and Hillary Peck.