Insurance companies do not generally cover cosmetic procedures. When veneers are indicated because of active decay or previous dental work that has failed, insurance companies may pay a portion of the costs. Unfortunately, most insurance companies downgrade the veneer procedure to a composite (“white filling”). This way, insurance companies get away with reimbursing even less for the claim.
To determine if your insurance company covers a portion of the cost of veneers, you will need to look at your particular plan details or call them to determine your coverage. In my opinion, it is not worth to invest in a dental insurance unless it is provided to you complementary through an employer.
We are not “in-network” with any specific insurance companies. If you do have dental insurance, we provide a complementary service to file all the necessary insurance paperwork and to submit your claim on your behalf. The insurance company will in turn send a check directly to you.
If you have a concern about whether your insurance provider will cover or how much they will actually reimburse to you for veneers or any other dental work, we can submit a preauthorization. This process may take up to six weeks or more to get back a response from the insurance company.
I highly recommend that you do not let your dental insurance dictate which dentist to pick to have your porcelain veneers done. It is a highly aesthetic procedure that will essentially show every time you smile or open your mouth to speak.
You should be very picky and do your research on the cosmetic dentist you choose. Ask for before and after pictures of similar cases to your own that they have done. Also make sure that the before/after pictures are actual work done by the dentist and not pictures that were purchased or taken from online.
Be careful of dentist that will grind away too much tooth structure before bonding the porcelain. This preparation done by the dentist on your teeth underneath your porcelain veneers is something that you can not see after the porcelain veneer has been bonded. These cases will fail and the veneers will break off more easily because the veneers do not have enough enamel (most outer surface of your teeth) to adhere properly to. It is important to have the correct type of loops and magnification to make sure that only the thickness of a finger nail worth of enamel is removed if even needed.
In every single one of my cases, I strive for excellence and perfection. It is my signature in everyone of my patient’s smiles! If anyone can tell that you have veneers placed after I finish, then I have FAILED! It has to look absolutely natural!
Every person has a unique and specific situation. To determine exact costs and whether or not veneers are indicated for you, I would need to do a full mouth comprehensive exam. As part of this exam, I will need a current set of full mouth series of X-rays (radiographs). Once I learn more about your individual case, I would be happy to make a comprehensive treatment plan which would include costs and specific treatment options custom to your needs!
I also offer Skype or FaceTime consults to those who live further away. This does not replace my initial consult exam. I will not have X-rays and I am not able to do my extensive intraoral exam over video conference. Nevertheless, it will at least allow me to answer any preliminary questions you may have and give me a better insight of your particular case.
It is important to understand that not all porcelain veneers are the same. There are differences in the quality type of porcelains when fabricated. Every porcelain veneer I deliver is custom using the highest quality of porcelains available.
Majority of dentists today use porcelain restorations that are fabricated by a machine. They are generic and tend to look more like “chiclets” and/or very opaque in color. I only use hand made porcelains that are blended together custom to make perfect occlusion (bite), function, and an exact color match to your adjacent natural teeth.
The majority of my cases are patients who have had the same work done multiple times, but failed either functionally or cosmetically. So why settle for subpar and then have to get your dental work done multiple times and end up spending a lot more all together?
I teach my own students at UCLA to push themselves to be the very best. To not only have a great personality, the most advanced technologies, specialized training, and experience, but also to be an artist and to be able to pay attention to the smallest details and always aim for perfection. It is the small details that makes the biggest difference! It is my signature in every one of my patient’s mouths that leaves my office... and it has to be perfect!
The specific number of veneers an individual needs varies from person to person. I have many patients that come to me who have been told by other dentists that they needed six or up to twelve veneers for their front teeth just because one or two teeth have a defect or spaces between them. So many patients are convinced that this is the standard of care just so that the color matches with the adjacent teeth. This is absolutely incorrect!
Many patients do not understand how important it is to conserve as much tooth structure as possible! For example, if you have one front tooth that is chipped, worn down or discolored; only have a restoration made for that one tooth! There is no need to do both front teeth just to “match the color”!
Each of our veneers is hand-made (no machines) custom to the individual patient! The color, shape, and anatomy of each of my hand-made veneers will match the adjacent natural teeth taking in consideration your gum health.
Under some circumstances, you may want to get veneers placed in front of most of your upper teeth if you are looking for a more fuller smile or a total smile makeover. In these particular cases, I take away very little tooth structure when preparing the teeth or no tooth structure at all (no-prep veneer) depending on the circumstances.
Sometimes to better help you determine how many veneers would look best in your particular situation, I offer my patients a mock-up. A mock-up is a temporary plastic veneer that covers the surface of your current natural teeth to give you a preview of what the veneers would look like and what to expect.
Regardless of how many porcelain veneers one chooses to get, I strongly recommend to my patients that they initially bleach their teeth for as long as needed to achieve the whiteness they desire. In some cases, some patients have trouble whitening their teeth due to sensitivity. We recommend our customized at home bleaching kit which uses a weaker formula reducing sensitivity and also results in a longer lasting white smile!
There are many different types of porcelain veneers. Porcelain veneers can be made up of a range of different materials that can result in a weaker overall restoration that is more brittle and can break more easily.
It is extremely important that your dentist works with a dental technician that uses the most superior types of porcelain blends and takes the time to make the veneers properly.
Please note, that if someone falls or has some sort of dramatic injury to their mouth, a porcelain veneer can easily break just like a natural tooth would. I would also refrain from biting into hard foods and pulling outward. For example, biting into an apple or hard baguette sandwich. It is this pulling that creates torque on the veneer that may result in it popping off depending on how much enamel tooth structure was conserved when the dentist did his tooth preparation. The more enamel tooth structure conserved, the greater the bond strength to the veneer.
Today, it is unfortunate to see so many cases where a lot more tooth structure was removed than necessary by the previous dentist causing unnecessary failures and veneers popping off as a result.
If done incorrectly, veneers can ruin your teeth. The majority of my cases are fixing previous dental work of other dentists that have failed. It is sometimes heartbreaking to describe how little tooth structure I find left underneath those veneers.
I always recommend whitening before considering veneers. It is only when you can not achieve that desired whiteness you are striving for, before I would propose either a prep-less or minimal-prep veneer.
Any dentist can represent themselves as a cosmetic dentist! It is your job to research each dentist and the type of work they have done in the past. Too many times, I see patients that have had their teeth shaved down to a cone just to place a veneer! This is absolutely unnecessary.
Remember, the goal is to conserve as much tooth structure as possible! Many times I will do a no-prep veneer if allowed just to have as much enamel (most outer layer of teeth) to be able to bond to.
Properly designed veneers should be no greater than the thickness of your fingernail or less!
Haven’t you seen veneers that are either too opaque white, squarish or just does not look real? Majority of the time, patients develop periodontal disease and suffer from gum recession. This is because the veneers were poorly placed, excess cement left behind, and have open margins that act as reservoirs for bacteria which cause recurrent decay and loss of more tooth structure.
It is even more upsetting that majority of dentists do not use the proper magnification to remove a veneer that has failed. Dentist needs to be meticulous and very precise to only remove porcelain and not remove any more tooth structure needed underneath it.
The porcelain veneers that I place are bonded with the highest-end bonding agents which would help lengthen the life span of your restorations. Just like natural teeth, veneers need to be maintained. Proper oral hygiene in combination of regular office cleanings are absolutely necessary for maintenance.
There are only a few reasons why veneers that are permanently cemented need to be redone. For example, sometimes patients want to go with an even brighter set of veneers. This is why, before placing veneers, I highly recommend to all my patients to whiten their natural teeth to a desired whiteness they want to achieve.
In most cases veneers need to be redone because of failures. Some of these failures include veneers that were not placed properly, open margins (edge where veneer meets the tooth), poor bonding due to too much tooth structure taken away, or failure due to the type of porcelain used in its fabrication.
Every one of my patients are educated about the importance of conservation of their tooth structure. This is crucial to the longevity of any restoration that is placed on their tooth.
Sometimes patients are pushed to do multiple veneers when only one or two are only needed. This happens many times because of the limitations most dentists face to be able to match the color and shape of their new veneers to your existing natural teeth. Therefore, patients are given treatment plans that include more veneers than are really needed.
There are many factors required to be able to achieve not only beautiful, but more importantly healthy results. Color, shape, and anatomy of the teeth need to perfectly match the adjacent natural teeth.
Veneers cannot be whitened, only natural teeth that are not covered with veneers can be whitened.
It is extremely important to understand that when undergoing any type of whitening procedure, only natural teeth are affected. Porcelain veneers and porcelain crowns cannot be whitened like natural teeth can. That is why when some people bleach their teeth after already haven placed veneers, it can lead to an unbalanced look and poor esthetic result. This is why I offer my patients my teeth whitening procedures before placement of any veneers. My whitening procedures are custom for each particular patient depending on the patient’s type of teeth.
If you already have veneers that were previously placed and want a whiter smile, the veneer or crown restorations would most likely need to be replaced. Sometimes there are stains baked into the veneer which can be polished out with dental polishers to give the teeth a whiter appearance. Nevertheless, the veneers will generally stay the same color throughout its lifetime.
Bonding, also known as composite resin is made up of a plastic mixture that looks like putty when placed onto the tooth then activated and hardened by a blue light.
After composite is placed, it cannot be whitened. In addition, this material is very porous and therefore can be stained by foods and drinks like grapes, coffee, wine, and tea.
Same question as the last question
Dental implants are placed surgically into your bone. After placed, it takes approximately 4 to 6 months to osteointegrate with your bone. After it osteointegrates, the implant is ready to be restored.
Implant is connected to a crown by an abutment. This apartment is screwed into the implant. Your crown is then either screwed to the abutment or cemented on to the abutment.
The crown that is placed can not be stained. The color is determined by the surrounding teeth. If you decide to bleach your teeth after a crown is placed, the rest of the dentition will whiten but the Crown will stay the same color.
In my experience, after a dental implant has osteointegrated to the bone, it has a great chance of lasting indefinitely. Keep in mind that it’s longevity does depend largely on how well you keep up with your dental hygiene.
Majority of dental implants are made of titanium, and after fusing with your bone, it can serve as a stable functional root.
A dental implant does not corrode or decay like teeth.
Over the Past 30 years, dental implant technology has improved drastically to the point that there are a lot less failures due to rejection or functionality issues. Today, pre-existing medical issues, diseases, and smoking are more likely factors to cause failure in a dental implant due to poor osteointegration with bone.
Be wary of implants that are aftermarket produced in other countries and being used by some dentists to save on costs.
Some of my favorite implant brands include Nobel Biocare, Straumann, and Zimmer.
I personally do not place composite veneers nor do I recommend them. Composite is a type of plastic that will shrink over appeared of time leading to open margins. I prefer to use porcelain veneers for my patients that last indefinitely.
There are some precautions that one needs to take after treatment with veneers. Some of these precautions include not biting into foods and pulling out causing torque on the veneers. This can cause them to chip and possibly break off.
Yes, a veneer can be replaced with another veneer. It is crucial that special microscopes with high magnification is used to conservatively only remove the previous veneer to conserve as much tooth structure underneath.
If done carefully, a veneer can be replaced with another veneer. Sometimes because of recurrent decay underneath the original veneer, more tooth structure needs to be taken away and therefore a crown preparation would be needed.
In my practice, most of my cases have to do with redoing or fixing previous veneers done by other dentists. My veneers are custom to each of my patients and are all hand made.
If you are deciding to get veneers, make sure you do your research and get it done right the first time to avoid having to do them again.
This is an excellent question, but it really depends on the patient’s particular case.
Lumineers are essentially “prepless” veneers. This basically means that the dentist does not grind on your teeth at all. He only takes a mold of your teeth and then makes porcelain veneers that are placed in front of the teeth being covered.
This is an excellent restoration for teeth that are lingualized (teeth that are set back when compared to the adjacent teeth) or in cases we want to widen a patient’s smile. It is also a benefit because your teeth is not prepared at all, conserving all the tooth structure. This allows the maximum amount of bonding due to a great amount of enamel surface.
Lumineers are not appropriate in all cases. For example, in a case where all the teeth are aligned and one tooth is discolored, chipped, or worn down, a lumineer would not be an esthetic choice. If a lumineer were to be placed on the tooth, it would look like a buck tooth compared to the rest of the patient’s natural teeth because it would be sticking out a little bit more. In this scenario, it would be more aesthetic to place a traditional porcelain veneer. Keep in mind that the traditional porcelain veneer should also have the most minimal prep. The preparation should be approximately the thickness of a fingernail or less to make sure that there is ample amount of enamel to bond to.
My porcelain veneer preparations are so conservative that my patients leave without any type of temporaries. It is as if nothing has been done to the teeth.
The final veneer restoration that is made is as thin as contact lens. It is bonded to the enamel tooth structure to give back the width that was grinded away.
Unlike the most outer layer of natural teeth, enamel, and many types of restorations like composite, porcelain veneers are not porus. Porcelain veneers do not get stained as easily by red wine, coffee, tea, and other foods that are likely to stain natural teeth.
If a patient is a heavy smoker, I have seen cases where light surface stains appear after many years. This usually occurs in cases where the patient does not come in for regular cleanings and maintenance.
It is important to note that staining is more likely to occur on the margins (edges of the veneer that meets the tooth) especially if the person does not maintain proper oral hygiene and keep up with cleanings.