I want my smile to be super bright, so I’m thinking about Lumineers. I’ve tried so many whitening kits, but they aren’t getting the bright enough. After doing some online research and reading Lumineers, some people say that their teeth look bulky with the Lumineers because the dentist didn’t shave their teeth. I don’t have any problems with the size of my teeth, and I don’t want them to look larger. Is it true that Lumineers might make my teeth look thick or bulky? I don’t know about other kinds of veneers, but is there another brand or type that will look better? Thanks
What Can You Expect with Lumineers?
Yes, Lumineers make your teeth look bulky. And you might not need them—or any other brand of porcelain veneers—depending on the type of stains in your teeth.
- No-prep – Although a dentist can place Lumineers without preparing your teeth, many cases require some reduction of your tooth enamel. Although tooth reduction is slight, it’s often needed for the veneers to fit on your teeth.
- Stains on teeth – Lumineers don’t conceal dark stains well. The darker the stains, the pastier your teeth will look.
- Shade and translucence – Although Lumineers can give you the super bright smile you want, they lack translucency, which makes teeth look natural.
Whiter Teeth with Bleaching Treatment
In-office whitening treatment will brighten your smile and make it brilliantly white. It works for a variety of stains on teeth, but a dentist’s supervision gives you predictable results.
Intrinsic stains – Stains caused by smoking, drinking coffee, or tea, staining berries are intrinsic. The stains get absorbed into your teeth and cause discoloration. Even deeply embedded stains can be removed with in-office whitening treatment, such as Zoom. As you’ve experienced, whitening toothpaste or the over-the-counter products won’t budge the stains, but professional whitening will get your smile brilliantly white.
If your teeth and gums are healthy, a cosmetic dentist will determine if bleaching them is an option. If so, you can get the super white smile you want without harming your teeth.
When Bleaching Your Teeth Won’t Work
Teeth bleaching won’t work on endogenous stains, and most often, advanced cosmetic dentists use porcelain veneers to conceal the stains.
What Are Endogenous Stains?
As your teeth develop throughout childhood, certain medications or chemicals can cause tooth stains that start on the inside and become visible on the surface. Endogenous stains begin from the inside out.
- Tetracycline – If taken while permanent teeth are developing, the antibiotic tetracycline can cause internal stains. They will show up as gray or brown bands on the teeth.
- Fluorosis – Taking in too much fluoride while teeth are developing can result in white spots or blotches on teeth.
An expert cosmetic dentist will examine your teeth, identify the cause of the stains, and determine if teeth whitening, porcelain veneers, or another cosmetic treatment will give you the best results.
We suggest that you schedule consultations with at least two cosmetic dentists to discuss your options.
David Finley, DDS, an accredited fellow of cosmetic dentistry in Monroe, LA, sponsors this post.