I just got two dental implants for some teeth that got knocked out. The first time the crowns came in, I told him I thought the crowns were too dark. He told me he thought they looked fine. I told him I’d give it 24 hours, but if I didn’t like it then, I wanted him to send it back to the lab, especially because he had me go the lab personally so they could match my teeth. I did end up having him send them back. I even went back to the lab and showed them what I was unhappy with. The second pair came back worse than the first. My dentist feels I am being too picky, but said he’d be willing to send it back again. I’m the one who is hesitating now. Is it the lab that is the problem? Should I ask to switch labs?
Deanna K.- Parkhill, KS
The problem isn’t the lab, it is your dentist. There are bad labs, but expert cosmetic dentists know who they are and don’t use them. The fact that your dentist sent you to the lab is a big warning sign to me. Cosmetic dentists know much more about color matching than lab technicians. It is the dentist that should be giving detailed instructions to the lab about how to produce the look you are looking for.
Only a small percentage of dentists have the skill to be truly artistic with cosmetic work. I’m guessing you spent a small fortune to get this work done. You should definitely get two crowns you’re proud to wear. I suggest you look for someone in your area who is accredited with the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD). There is a difference between membership and accreditation. Matching the porcelain crowns for your dental implants will be no problem at all for with that level of expertise. If there is no one close that is accredited, contact me again and I’ll try to help you locate someone qualified in your area.
This blog is brought to you by Boston Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Randall Burba.
I recently had an implant bridge placed. I’m having a funny problem with my bite though. When I bite down the teeth on the side of the implant match up on the top and bottom, but the teeth on the opposite side of my mouth are not meeting up at all. This doesn’t feel normal, but I wanted to check before I went back in to my dentist.
Jeffery A.- Pennsylvania
You’re right, this isn’t normal. Your teeth should meet up together perfectly on both sides, not just the side that had the implant. If this isn’t repaired, you could end up with TMJ Disorder. Dental implants is becoming one of the leading areas of dental malpractice.
Many patients don’t know that Implant dentistry isn’t a specialty, so any general dentist can place them no matter how little training they’ve received. Plus, there are varying levels of involvement when it comes to placing dental implants. Some dentists do the surgery and the restoration. Others hire out the surgery and just do the restorations.
In your case, either your implants were restored improperly or the surgeon placed the implants in the wrong spot. If your dentist hired out the surgery there could have been communication problems as to where the implants were to go. The safest practice is for your dentist to place a surgical guide that fits in your mouth and outlines the exact position and angle where the implants should be placed. It is very likely your dentist skipped this step.
If my assumptions are correct, your dentist has some legal liability to make this right. To make sure, I suggest you get a second from an implant dentist with credentials from either the International Congress of Oral Implantologists (ICOI) or the American Academy of Implant Dentistry (AAID). If it is determined the problem is the location of the implants you have a right to not just ask for a refund, but to ask your dentist to pay for it to be repaired properly.
This blog is brought to you by Salem, MA dentist Dr. Randall Burba.