Having Trouble Speaking with Porcelain Veneers

I’ve gotten porcelain veneers. While they look fine I’m finding it difficult to speak with them. They’re bulkier than my teeth and my tongue keeps running into the back of them. I feel like my mouth has been stuffed with something. I’m also a little worried that my top arch seems a bit off. This may be unrelated, but shortly after they were placed, I began getting migraines. Will I get used to this or is something wrong? It’s been six months.

Emily M. – South Dakota


If your tongue is touching them on the backs of your teeth, that isn’t porcelain veneers. That sounds more like porcelain crowns. While porcelain veneers are only placed on the front of your teeth and are used for cosmetic purposes, crowns completely surround your teeth. In fact, your dentist had to file down all sides of your teeth to get them to fit.

If you’ve had them for six months and are still struggling, you’re not going to adjust. If your dentist made them too thick or long, which happens, a general adjustment period is a few weeks.

However, you mentioned the additional concern of your arch feeling out of wack and developing migraines. These are both signs of TMJ. That condition can be spurred on my improper placement of your crowns.

Get x-rays of your teeth both before and after your crowns and take them to a TMJ dentist to look at. They’ll be able to give you some idea of whether or not the crowns are causing problems.

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Sores with Dentures

Shortly after I started wearing dentures I developed sores and cracks in the corners of my mouth. It’s gotten quite painful. Is there anything I can do about it? Is it from the dentures or something else?

Ellie K. – Ohio


I haven’t examined you, of course, but based on what you’ve said you could have Angular Chelitis. It causes cracks or lesions at the corners of the lips. You’re right, it’s quite painful.

You’ll have a higher chance at getting successful treatment if you first find the cause. The dentures could be the cause, if they’re not fitted properly. If they’re not fitted right, your lips could fold in over themselves at the corners. This causes friction that leads to the cracks.

I’d talk to your dentist. If it turns out your dentures are the problem they should repair that, without cost to you.

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Worried I’m Losing My Dental Implants

I struggle with gum disease. It’s been affecting my teeth and now I’m worried it’s affecting my dental implants. A few months ago I had dental implants placed after losing two teeth. My dentist tried to save them. He knew gum disease was in issue. In fact, we even doubled my dental appointments, getting me cleanings every three months. Unfortunately, despite his best efforts the teeth were lost. He said it was important I replace the teeth or the remaining ones will shift. His recommendation was dental implants. I LOVE them, but now am worried. They’re feeling a little loose. Am I at risk of losing those too?  Please tell me it’s not too late to save them?

Abigail W. – New Hampshire


I’m concerned about some of the things you’ve written. First, let’s talk about your gum disease. Simply increasing your cleanings and check-ups, while a good start is not enough.  They should have been doing specific treatments for your gums.

If you have gum disease he should have never given you dental implants. Gum disease is contraindicative for implants. Without intervention quickly, you’re going to lose your implants. If you think about it, it’s only logical. If your gums weren’t healthy enough to retain your teeth, they’re not going to be able to retain your gums either.

My recommendation for you is to see a different dentist who treats dental implants.  This one has obviously not given you the proper care.

If you get in quickly, there’s a chance you can save your implants.

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Best Dentist for a Gum Ache?

I have a weird problem and I’m not sure if it’s best to see a dentist or a doctor. My gums, on the teeth next to my front teeth, ache and itch at the same time.  I’ve had a cold, so I don’t know if that’s related to it.  Is it best to see a doctor or dentist?

Donna M. – Ohio


That’s a great question.  There is not really a right or wrong here. It would be medical or dental.  A cold can inflame your sinuses which are near the area you’re describing, which can mimic a tooth problem.

Here’s what I’d recommend. If you’re due for a cleaning or are prone to decay and tooth infections, it would be best to see the dentist first. Then you can eliminate any issues that could blow up on you. It will also give you peace of mind.

However, If your cleanings are up to date and you had no problems at the check-up, it might be better to see the doctor first.

Alternately, if it was just a cold and you’re not running a fever, you could just give it a few days to see if it’s just a sinus flare up. It may go away on its own.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Randall Burba.