My nephew wants to be an actor but his teeth are pretty crooked, at least in my opinion. He is about to graduate from high school. I want to get his teeth repaired for him as his graduation present so he can pursue his dream of being an actor. I spoke to one dentist who suggested Lumineers, but I’m a little concerned about this option. It doesn’t have the best reviews. Plus, from what I hear they will only last about 15 years. Should I look for something more permanent?
Dear Aunt Mary,
If only everyone had an aunt like you! What a great way to help your nephew. I’m actually very glad you wrote because I want to make sure your money is well spent and not wasted on such a kind gift.
With how you described your concerns with your nephew’s smile, you have two options. Let’s start with the one your dentist recommended— Lumineers.
Option One: Porcelain Veneers
Lumineers is one brand of porcelain veneers and you’re wise to be concerned about the reviews you’ve read. It is highly marketed to inexperienced cosmetic dentists as being easy to place. The company claims it doesn’t require any tooth preparation (which is what they say makes it easy). In most cases, that makes the teeth look bulky.
A secondary problem is the company which makes Lumineers requires dentists to use their lab, which isn’t known for its beautiful work. Because of that, most expert cosmetic dentists prefer other brands of porcelain veneers.
If you decide to go the route of porcelain veneers, make sure you take your nephew to an AACD accredited dentist. These are the top cosmetic dentists in the country. They’ll know which brand will work best for your nephew’s smile goals and will create a gorgeous smile for him.
As far as the longevity of porcelain veneers. A lot of that depends on how well cared for they are. If they are not taken care of, they will only last around five years. If they are cared for diligently, they can last 20+ years.
However, you have a second option, which costs significantly less.
Option Two: Invisalign and Teeth Whitening
If all he really needs is orthodontics, I would suggest you go this route. With Invisalign, he can straighten his teeth without anyone knowing in half the time of traditional braces. Instead of metal wires and brackets, these use clear aligners. A sophisticated software program plans out his treatment then produces the aligners which he’ll switch out every two weeks.
Additionally, if his teeth need whitening, the aligners can double as teeth whitening trays which will allow him to straighten and whiten his teeth at the same time.
I hope this helps.
This blog is brought to you by Salem, MA Dentist Dr. Randall Burba.