I recently got porcelain veneers and was so excited to show off my new smile. The problem is, I hate the way they shine. I think it looks fake and unnatural. Is there anything that can be done to dull the shine?
Natural teeth just don’t shine like this and although I wanted to transform my smile, I don’t want to blind people when I smile!
-Kendra in Nevada
There are many aspects to a beautiful smile makeover. The color, shape, translucency and texture are important. But, you bring up an excellent point, the shine is just as important when creating natural-looking, lifelike results.
The glaze is what ultimately protects the porcelain veneers from stains. It also gives the veneers the shine. If it isn’t done correctly, the result can look fake. That is likely what is going on here. The other important factor is the texture. If there isn’t any texture and appears very flat, the glaze won’t look natural.
In the image to the right, you can see the surface of these teeth. There of them natural and the one on the right is actually a porcelain crown. This example illustrates the importance of proper shine. It’s not a perfect finish. It has texture and this is what gives the teeth a natural shine. It blends in well with the other teeth too. The more texture that is on the teeth usually represents a younger-looking smile because as we age, our teeth wear down.
It’s unfortunate that you aren’t happy with your porcelain veneers. It is possible you didn’t have an artistic, experienced cosmetic dentist. Beautiful cosmetic dentistry is like an art. Not just any family dentist can do porcelain veneers well. Most expert cosmetic dentists will give you multiple opportunities throughout the smile makeover process to see exactly what your new teeth will look like. And most excellent cosmetic dentists will consider their work a failure if you don’t absolutely love them. Many insist that you love them before they are permanently bonded in place and refer to it as a beautiful smile guarantee. When this is done, any changes that need to be done can be taken care of before they are permanently bonded. The veneers can be sent back to the lab at that stage, but once they are in place it’s too late. It doesn’t sound like you had that opportunity in the process to see exactly what they’d look like.
At this stage, there are things that can be done to help reduce the shine. A dental hygienist can use a Prophy Jet to polish the porcelain veneers. The powerful spray will ruin the glaze, which will remove the shine. But it also means that they will be susceptible to stains. So, that isn’t the best course of action, unless the glaze can be redone.
It is probably best to go back to your dentist that did the work and let them know how you feel about the shine. Hopefully, they will be willing to redo them for you. If you aren’t happy, it would be the right thing for the dentist to fix them. If they do end up doing them over for you and making it right, be 100% sure that you will have the opportunity to see exactly how they will look before the final bonding.
Selecting a cosmetic dentist is an important decision. It requires extensive training beyond dental school and a passion for creating beauty. James Gavrilos, DDS is a cosmetic dentist located in Barrington, IL that won’t be happy until you love your new smile. Hopefully, this post will help others considering porcelain veneers and help explain the different aspects of successful porcelain veneers.