I made a big investment in myself a little over six months ago. I actually had 20 porcelain veneers done. I have been noticing lately that my veneers are looking gray. Do you know what could be causing this to happen? I am wondering if it’s my daily oral hygiene routine? I use Listerine, and I use an abrasive toothbrush with Colgate toothpaste, like I have for decades. When I looked it up online, it said I shouldn’t be using those products. I sure wish someone would have told me about that. I am feeling frustrated if a simple change in my toothpaste would have avoided this problem. Any insight you have or ways to correct it would be much appreciated.
-Lisa in Nevada
It’s very unfortunate that you weren’t informed about proper care instructions for your new porcelain veneers. Here is some information about how to best care for them.
- Avoid alcohol-containing products. Listerine which includes alcohol, should not be used with porcelain veneers. There are mouthwashes available that do not contain alcohol. Be sure to look for those alcohol-free products.
- Avoid abrasive care products. This includes your toothbrush. So, you need to start using a soft-bristled toothbrush. Many dentists believe that the soft toothbrushes actually clean better than hard brushes. So, it would be wise to make that simple change immediately.
- Avoid abrasive toothpaste products, for example anything that is super whitening or tartar-control. You mentioned that you were using Colgate, so as long it is the regular formula, and not an aggressive whitening toothpaste, that should be fine. If you are still concerned, Supermile toothpaste is an excellent choice for cosmetic dentistry patients. Many excellent cosmetic dentists would recommend it over some of the mainstream toothpastes to keep your porcelain veneers looking great.
All that to be said, none of these actions will cause your porcelain veneers to turn gray. The Listerine mouthwash and the abrasive toothbrush may damage the margins. This would eventually lead to staining around the margins on the edge of the porcelain veneers. But if the veneers are turning gray on the surfaces and they are another color, then there are a couple reasons for something like that to take place. First, it is possible that the material is not actually porcelain. Or the other possibility is that the surface glaze was damaged. It would have had to be something that took place that is stronger than toothpaste or mouthwash though. Have you seen a dental hygienist since the discoloration began? If the hygienist used a Prophy Jet or another type of polishing equipment, this may be the culprit.
Hopefully, this information is helpful to you to determine what went wrong with your veneers.
This post is sponsored by Barrington cosmetic dentist James T. Gavrilos, DDS.