Congenitally Missing Lateral Incisors
Troy, a young man from Laguna Niguel was congenitally missing two teeth, both his upper lateral incisors (the teeth next to the front teeth) and was looking for a Laguna Niguel cosmetic dentist to replace his old porcelain veneers and this time, give him a really nice smile! His dental history relating to his two missing teeth was simple, one very similar to many other people. About 5% of the population are congenitally missing one or more teeth. The most common congenitally missing teeth are the upper lateral incisors, like Troy was missing. Other commonly missing teeth are the lower second bicuspids, lower second molars and wisdom teeth.
Orthodontic Treatment was only able to partially solve the missing tooth problem
In Troy’s situation it was obvious when he was nine years old that the two permanent lateral incisors were missing. So, his parents took him to the orthodontist who put him in braces and closed up the two spaces so that he didn’t have any gaps between his front two teeth and his canine teeth. However, after it was finished his smile still didn’t look right. Since the canine teeth were moved into the spaces of the lateral incisors he had very big teeth there in the place where normal lateral incisors are much smaller. Not only are they smaller, they are supposed to be narrower and flatter as well.
Four porcelain veneers helped more, but still not able to solve Troy’s problem
He then went to his family dentist who placed four porcelain veneers to try to make the canine teeth look more like lateral incisors. Still, treating just the four front teeth didn’t do the trick. Exhausted with trying to correct the problem, and thinking that there were no other options to give him a great smile, Troy and his parents settled for the smile created for him by the orthodontist and the general dentist. Fifteen years passed and Troy started researching cosmetic dentists in Laguna Niguel and came to Dr. Huefner’s cosmetic dental practice to see if new techniques were yet available in porcelain veneering that might solve his problem and give him a nice smile?
Fortunately for Troy we did have a “special trick up our sleeves” that could give him not only a normal smile, but a great smile too! By “normal smile” we’re referring to appearing as though he has a normal compliment of teeth, four front incisors followed by canine teeth, and then bicuspid teeth right behind those. Dr. Huefner suggested to Troy that he do something special that he had done for a number of other patients who were congenitally missing teeth – doing illusionary dentistry with porcelain veneers! We could place eight porcelain veneers but make them each look like the teeth that should normally occupy the position rather than making the porcelain veneers look like the tooth that it is actually on.
Porcelain Veneers and special illusion techniques solve Troy’s problem
Specifically, in Troy’s case we would make his canine teeth (which were in the position of lateral incisors) look like lateral incisors. Then we would make his first bicuspids (which were in the position of the canine teeth) look like canines. Making the second bicuspid look like a first bicuspid was easiest of all. We would give the illusions that no teeth were ever mission or in the wrong position.
Troy and his parents were really pleased to hear the solution we offered them. However, they said that if they were going to do porcelain veneers again could we make his teeth whiter than the original old porcelain veneers? The answer was “of course!” We would guide him and recommend the color of the porcelain veneers that we thought would look best, but the final decision would be Troy’s! ( He ultimately chose BL2.) We added that we would also design the actual shapes of Troy’s new porcelain veneers to give him a masculine smile design.
The illusionary porcelain veneer treatment for Troy was completed in just over three weeks time with results that looked fantastic according to Troy. (See top photo) His comments were that he really wished that the original cosmetic dentist who did his first four porcelain veneers fifteen years earlier had been able to do that for him.