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My dentist told me that I am not a candidate for porcelain veneers because my top teeth almost completely cover my bottom teeth. Instead, he wants to put 6 porcelain crowns on my top front teeth. I want a beautiful set of teeth, and unfortunately mine are stained from tetracycline. I have 2 questions: 1) Have you heard of veneers being inappropriate for a particular bite such as mine? And 2) Since my bottom teeth will not be crowned, is it reasonable to expect that I can bleach them to match my new crowns on top?
– Susan from Louisiana
Oh no, you don’t want to do crowns on all your front top teeth! To do that they’ll all have to be ground down to stubs. And you don’t need that. Having a deep overbite the way you do it actually makes more sense to do porcelain veneers, because nothing has to be done to the backs of the teeth—all the work is confined to the front.
This happens with cosmetic dentistry a lot. You want a cosmetic treatment. Your dentist doesn’t do a lot of cosmetic dentistry and doesn’t feel comfortable with the particular procedure you want, so he or she gives you some excuse why this isn’t appropriate for you. I’ll give your dentist credit for creativity at least—this is the first time I’ve heard of a particular bite being a reason for not doing porcelain veneers.
Furthermore, you have tetracycline stains. This is one of the most difficult smile makeover situations there is, and you don’t want to have your family dentist doing this. It requires a high level of expertise and a lot of experience with cosmetic dentistry.
And six teeth? People show eight to twelve upper teeth when they smile, depending on the width of your smile. Doing just six teeth when you have tetracycline stains would look really funny. This is another signal your dentist is giving that he is in over his head on this. Sorry to be so blunt about it, but I’m trying to look out for your best interests.
My recommendation: Go to one of our expert cosmetic dentists that we recommend. We have several in Louisiana who could do a great job for you and give you a beautiful smile. There is one close to you that I will email to you privately, so I don’t give any clues as to your exact location. If you otherwise like your dentist, explain what you are doing and that you’ll be back to him for your regular checkups, cleanings, and other work, but that you’ve been advised that this is a difficult cosmetic procedure for which you need a cosmetic specialist.
About bleaching your lower teeth—this is an option, depending on the type of bleaching and the severity of the tetracycline stains. This is another reason you want an expert who has experience with your type of case. The Kör deep bleaching system can give some pretty decent results with these stains.
– Dr. Hall
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