I have severe tetracycline stains that I am ready to get cosmetically treated. I’ve seen two dentists about this. The first suggested porcelain veneers, the second dentist suggested porcelain crowns. The price quoted to me for the veneers is almost double that for the crowns. Can I acheive the same beautiful result with either porcedure? I like the idea of saving money, but don’t want subpar results.
It is an exciting time when you are getting to plan your smile makeover. I am glad you wrote. The single biggest factor that detrmines the beauty of your case is not necessarily which procedure, but which dentist. Think of cosmetic dentistry as an art form. If I commissioned two painters to do the same portrait with the exact same materials, the portraits would not be exactly the same. This is because the skill and artistry varies from painter to painter. The same is true of cosmetic dentists.
Now factor in that you are dealing with severe tetracycline stains and the dentist becomes even more important. Tetracycline stains are one of the most advanced cases in cosmetic dentistry and quite difficult to do.
The standard treatment for this would be to have porcelain veneers placed. Usually, dentist who suggest porcealin crowns do so because they do not have the skill to cover the stains with the thin wafers of porcelain that make up veneers and think that using dental crowns will make that easier. This is not the case.
With dental crowns, you also want to consider that there is significantly more grinding of the teeth for preparation. This weakens the teeth and puts them at greater risk down the road. Plus, you can never backtrack from dental crowns. Once the tooth structure is gone, it’s gone. There is not a way to get it back.
Just because the first dentist suggested veneers instead of crowns, does not necessarily make him an expert cosmetic dentist. The easiest way for you to find an expert, artistic cosmetic dentist is to go to the AACD.com website. They have a find a cosmetic dentist link. However, it is important that you check that you want an accredited dentist. AACD accredited dentists are the top cosmetic dentists in the country. Any one of them can ensure you get a beautiful smile, even with severe tetracycline stains.
This blog is brought to you by Philadelphia Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Michael Weiss.