Hello,

I chipped one of my front teeth when I was young. Later, I needed to have a filling placed in the left portion of this same tooth. I am now 57 years old and my front tooth appears to be getting darker. This embarrasses me and it makes me not want to smile. I have discussed this issue with my dentist. He has stated that it may be too risky to put a crown on the tooth. Since it is dead the canal has calcified. I was looking into Lumineers and my dentist discouraged me from this product as well. He said I wouldn’t be happy with the result.

~Cindy from New York

Cindy,

There are many types of porcelain veneers and Lumineers is just one particular brand. So in response to your question, I will be referring to porcelain veneers in general. Porcelain veneers are a cosmetic procedure that is not taught in dental school. From what you have outlined, it sounds as if your dentist may be uncomfortable with cosmetic dentistry techniques. If a dentist knows how to use veneers, they are a beautiful solution to a wide range of issues. Although, if a dentist is not familiar with them, they may steer you away.

Dentists are trained to fix things and a dentist trained in cosmetic dentistry has an artistic eye. I would recommend you continue on with your dentist for routine cleanings, checkups, and general dentistry. But I do feel that when porcelain veneers are done correctly, they are an excellent solution for a case like yours. You should find a cosmetic dentist that puts top priority on appearance.

If you are satisfied with your smile and the look of your other teeth, then all that may be needed is a direct dental bonding or just one porcelain veneer over the darkened tooth. A full set of porcelain veneers may be warranted if you have things that you aren’t happy with on your other teeth.

Once again, it is important to seek out a true artistic dentist that has an eye for beauty for this type of work. I hope you can proudly smile again soon.