August 15, 2018

Archives for June 2011

Making Your Face Look Younger with “Anti-Aging” Cosmetic Dentistry Mission Viejo

cosmetic dentistry mission viejo

Judy wanted a younger, more attractive smile. We accomplished her goals by bleaching her lower teeth and replacing her old yellow colored porcelain fused to metal crowns with whiter colored all-ceramic Empress crowns. We also made her teeth slightly longer and gave them the shape of younger, more feminine teeth.

It’s a pretty certain fact that in this country most aging adults, who care about their appearance and try to look their best, would like to look years younger then they actually are.  The majority of people in their 40s, 50s and 60s don’t want to try to look like a teenager again, but most certainly wouldn’t mind taking 5,10 or 15 years off of the way their face looks!

Judy from Mission Viejo was one of those people.  She is a medical professional, takes her career very seriously and knows the value of looking her best to the public she serves.  However, approaching her 60s, Judy’s teeth and smile just weren’t helping her.  She had had a lot of dentistry over the years and numerous “caps” (actually porcelain fused to metal crowns) on her upper front teeth.  The problem was that she had very yellow lower teeth, so her dentist made all of her upper teeth match them…..YELLOW TEETH again!  Sure her dentist took care of her cavities and made her teeth look better than they were.  But Judy wanted a nicer, better looking smile.

After having those crowns done ten years ago Judy finally broke down and came to us to see what we thought about it.  Could we give her a beautiful smile, that complimented her professional image, and at the same time “maybe” take 5 or 10 years off of her face?

Actually what Judy was asking of us was very straight forward, something we incorporate into our cosmetic dentistry on a regular basis.  Making teeth look younger and improving the appearance of the smile is what most of our cosmetic dental patients want, and something we told Judy we could do for her as well.

We explained to Judy that there were three main things that we do to restore teeth than make the teeth and smile look younger:

  • Teeth yellow and discolor with age, so we make them whiter to make them look younger
  • Front teeth shorten with wear over the years, so if they are worn we making them slightly longer, or as long as they originally were
  • The actual shape of the teeth change with years as well.  They usually get thinner, smoother and most importantly, front teeth appear more squarish or chipped over the years.  To make the actually shape of the front teeth non-squarish, without sharp corners, rounding the corners like younger, unworn teeth, is usually our goal.
before teeth whitening and replacing old dentistry mission viejo

A health care professional, Judy knew the importance of looking her best with the public served and in dealing with other professionals. Her dentistry was done ten years ago and she felt it was finally time to upgrade the appearance of her teeth and smile.

We took photos of Judy’s teeth and smile and showed her how we would treat her smile.  First, we suggested bleaching her lower teeth to make them whiter.  After than, we advised replacing her old, yellow colored porcelain fused to crowns on her upper front teeth.  We would make them much whiter than they were, probably a bit whiter than her lower teeth would bleach out to.  Also, we would increase the length of her front teeth and make the shapes of her teeth a much more youthful and feminine shape.

Judy followed our recommendations, started bleaching her lower teeth almost immediately.  After doing the Day White home tray bleaching for one hour a day for ten days, Judy had gotten a pretty good result.  Then we replaced her old upper porcelain fused to metal crowns with all-ceramic Empress crowns.  We made her upper teeth whiter as we had planned, and also changed the length and shape of her teeth as well.

The end result? Did we make Judy’s teeth and smile look years younger?  You  be the judge.  How much did we accomplish?  Five, ten or fifteen years?  Judy was happy, we exceeded her expectations about what could be done for her with cosmetic dentistry.

Dr. Norman Huefner, Orange County Cosmetic Dentistry and Porcelain Veneers. Serving the surrounding cities of Laguna Niguel, Irvine, Newport Beach, Mission Viejo and Rancho Santa Margarita

Extremely Crooked Teeth Made Straight and Beautiful with Porcelain Veneers Irvine

irvine porcelain veneers

Matt had very crooked teeth and desperately wanted to avoid having orthodontic treatment. He also didn't like the color and shape of his teeth. Matt got his beautiful new smile with eight porcelain veneers by Dr. Huefner.

Matt is an achiever.  After going into the military service he was back to college working on his degree.  A handsome and ambitious young man, Matt is very committed to becoming a success.  Understanding that it’s not just brains, education and hard work that are the important ingredients to getting where he wants to go, Matt realized that his appearance are important too!

crooked teeth irvine

"I'm embarrassed to smile," Matt said. He hated the crookedness and shape of his teeth. His four incisors were too round and his cuspids were to pronounced and pointed.

“I’m embarrassed to smile,” Matt told us at his cosmetic dentistry consultation appointment.  “I’ve been told by every dentist I’ve ever seen that I need braces.  But at my age I really don’t want to go through all of that.  Is there anything you can do for me with cosmetic dentistry?”

After attentively listening to Matt, I answered “I totally understand where you are coming from Matt.  But before I answer you, can you tell me is it just that your teeth are crooked, or are there other things that you don’t like about them?”

Mat answered that:

  • I don’t like the shape of my teeth, the incisors are too round and the eye teeth are too pointed
  • My one front tooth had a root canal years ago, and it turned dark
  • I’d really like all my teeth a lot whiter
masculine smile design BL2 toot shade

With eight porcelain veneers Matt got the great smile he had always wanted, and his treatment was completed in less than three weeks time. He chose a BL2 tooth shade from the tooth shade guide and masculine smile design from the tooth shape catalog.

Now we had enough information to make recommendations to Matt.  We explained that all his other dentists were right, that regarding his crooked teeth, braces (orthodontics) is the best way for him to go.  But we also realized that pulling a few teeth and then a couple years of braces are something most people would like to avoid if possible.  If he did go that route, at the end he would still have the teeth with the shape he didn’t like, the color of his teeth would still not meet his expectations, but the good thing would be that his teeth at least would be straight.

The absolutely fantastic news for Matt is that with cosmetic dentistry, specifically porcelain veneers, we could not only make Matt’s teeth straight, but we could also make them all the whiter color he wants and change the shape of his teeth.  It gets even better, because his entire treatment could be completed in less than three weeks time.  Those were the benefits, as we explained to Matt.  Also there was a potential complication that Matt needed to understand accept.  When someone like Matt has very crooked teeth and porcelain veneers are done to make them all straight, that  there is the potential that one or more of his very crooked teeth might need root canal treatments.  The reason is that the more crooked the tooth is, the more tooth preparation is generally needed to straighten it out in good alignment.  This increased preparation can cause tooth sensitivity and sometimes dental pain, which are both alleviated with root canal treatment.

After spending a little more time going over all Matt’s options, he decided to go forward with porcelain veneers on his eight upper front teeth.  As we had discussed, his entire treatment was completed in less than three weeks time.  Matt chose a BL2 shade from the tooth shade guide and a masculine smile design from the tooth shape catalog.

The end result for Matt was nothing short of amazing.  It gave him a huge improvement in his appearance!

You are probably wondering if Matt ended up needing any root canal treatments?  Yes, he did.  His cuspids stuck out a lot and in order to put a porcelain veneer on them that would be even with his other teeth they required more than the normal amount of tooth preparation, and required root canal treatments.  Matt was a little frustrated with that, wishing very much that the root canal procedures would not have been necessary.  However he readily admitted, he was extremely happy with his new smile and the root canal treatments and great looking straight white teeth was a lot better than the thought of having a couple teeth pulled and a couple years of braces.

Dr. Norman Huefner, Orange County Cosmetic Dentistry and Porcelain Veneers. Serving the surrounding cities of Laguna Niguel, Irvine, Newport Beach, Mission Viejo and Rancho Santa Margarita

Old Veneers Had to Go, Don Revitalizes His Smile with New Porcelain Veneers Laguna Niguel

porcelain veneers laguna niguel

Below, Don's old porcelain veneers. He didn't like the color, thought his teeth were too short and the old porcelain veneers looked fake. Above, the new set of porcelain veneers we made for Don with Empress porcelain. We made his new teeth whiter, longer, filled the spaces between his teeth hear his gum line, covered over his dark roots, giving him a beautiful, natural looking smile.

Don is a handsome father of three from Laguna Niguel.  He has his own business and understands the value of having a nice smile when dealing with his customers.  A pretty good athlete when he was a young man, Don chipped several teeth pretty badly while playing ball.  About twenty years ago he broke down and got porcelain veneers from his family dentist, which fixed his chipped teeth.  However, Don said he was never really happy with the way his dentist did his old porcelain veneers.

old porcelain veneers

After wearing his old porcelain veneers for over twenty years, Don decided it was time to revitalize his smile with a new set of porcelain veneers by Dr. Huefner

After years of frustration, Don came to our cosmetic dental practice in Laguna Niguel to discuss “getting new porcelain veneers.”  “Of course we can remove your old porcelain veneers and make you new ones”, we told Don.  But since he was unhappy with the set of porcelain veneers made for him twenty years ago we needed to know what changes he would want with his new smile?

After some thinking and looking at the photos of his teeth and smile, Don explained what he didn’t like and wanted changed:

  • First of all, I want my teeth whiter.  The porcelain veneers they made before were way too yellow
  • I don’t like the spaces in between my teeth around my gum line
  • You can see where the old porcelain veneers end and how dark my roots are.  That doesn’t look good at all!
  • I think my teeth are too short.
  • My old porcelain veneers just look fake.  They don’t look like real teeth.
softened smile design porcelain veneers

For Don's new set of porcelain veneers we utilized Empress porcelain, the "softened" smile style from the LVI tooth shape catalog, a BL2 tooth color from the tooth shade guide and slightly longer teeth.

Most of the things Don listed we would have corrected anyway.  But it was helpful for Don to be very specific about what he didn’t like and wanted changed.  We wanted to make sure that the new porcelain veneers we made for him looked great, made him happy and exceeded his expectations.

We did Don’s cosmetic dentistry with eight new porcelain veneers.  It took about 2 1/2 weeks.  Don chose a BL2 shade from the tooth shade guide and a “softened” smile style from the LVI tooth shape catalog, which is a more youthful masculine looking smile design.  We lengthened his teeth, as he requested.  We also covered over his dark underlying roots and filled the spaces around his gum line.  We also used a stronger and more natural looking porcelain, Empress porcelain, for his new veneers.

The end result for Don was a very masculine, attractive, healthy looking smile.

Dr. Norman Huefner, Orange County Cosmetic Dentistry and Porcelain Veneers. Serving the surrounding cities of Laguna Niguel, Irvine, Newport Beach, Mission Viejo and Rancho Santa Margarita

Brenda’s Broken Down, Gummy Smile Restored with Porcelain Veneers and Porcelain Crowns Mission Viejo

gummy smile laser treatment

Brenda had a myriad of dental problems. She showed too much of her gums (i.e. had a "gummy smile"), was missing one tooth, her teeth were discolored and she wanted white teeth, her front teeth were short and chipped and her back side teeth leaned inwards.

Brenda from Mission Viejo had a myriad of dental problems.  “I don’t know where to start,” exclaimed Brenda.  “I don’t like the color of my teeth, my front ones are chipping away and I’m missing my side tooth.  I don’t know what to do.  Can you help me?” It was obvious from her tone that she was very fed up and frustrated with the appearance of her teeth and smile.

gummy smile porcelain veneers mission viejo

Brenda got her beautiful new smile with laser gum reshaping and porcelain veneers, porcelain crowns and a porcelain bridge. Her entire treatment was completed in less than a month's time.

We acknowledged that she had a number of dental issues to address.  It was also important for Brenda to realize that if she went to ten different cosmetic dentists, she would no doubt get ten different opinions on how to fix her smile.  We explained that before we would recommend anything we first needed to know what she didn’t like about her teeth and smile, and if we could give her the smile she always wanted, what would that look like?

With our permission to tell us “her story” and reveal her inner feelings about her teeth, Brenda was not shy expressing her concerns.  “I’ve always wanted a nice smile,” she said.  “I’d like to have longer teeth, for them to all be the same color…white of course!  I know my side teeth lean in a lot, but I don’t want to get braces to change my bite.  And then my gums….when I smile my lip goes up so high that too much of my gums show.”

Brenda was showing a lot of emotion, and it was very apparent that getting a great looking smile was very important to her.  She was very relieved when we told her that yes, we could give her a beautiful smile!

In Brenda’s case, she had excess gum tissue around her front teeth.  We could reduce much of her gummy smile by using our dental gum laser to reshape her excess gums.  She was pleased to hear that laser gum reshaping is a minor procedure with no bleeding or stitches, very little post treatment discomfort (usually only Advil is necessary the first night) and complete healing occurs in just a few days.  If Brenda wanted us to do any of her gummy smile correction, that needed to be done first, prior to fixing her teeth.

She said that she definitely wanted to do that!

With regards to her teeth, we could give her the incredible smile she wanted with porcelain veneers, a couple porcelain crowns and an all porcelain bridge.

“Porcelain bridge?”, Brenda asked.  “I thought when you had a missing tooth that we would have to do a dental implant?”

We then went on to explain to her that of course we could do a dental implant, but because the teeth on either side of the missing tooth needed porcelain veneers or porcelain crowns, it would make her treatment much simpler and give us more control by placing an all porcelain bridge instead of doing a dental implant.  Also with dental implants, we would need to wait several months for healing before replacing the missing tooth.  With a porcelain bridge all her treatment could be completed in less than a month’s time.

Happily, Brends was starting to understand the proposed treatment.

“What about the tooth color,” asked Brenda?

“You will be choosing the color of your teeth,” we answered.  “We will give you our recommendations as to what color we think will look best for you, but the final color choice will be yours.  As a matter of fact, in concert with our ceramist, when you do choose the color we will ask that you sign the treatment form indicating that we have discussed tooth color with you on several occasions, and that you made the final decision on the tooth color you wanted us to make for you.

“Well how will I know if I will like the tooth color I choose,” Brenda asked?

We went on to explain to Brenda that the first thing we will do after reshaping her gums with the dental gum laser is place her in temporary veneers, crowns and bridges.  We call that stage the “trial smile” stage and since she wants whiter teeth, we will make her “trial smile” in the BL4 color range (BL is for “BLeaching”).  She’ll get to wear the “trial smile” for several days, then come back to our office to discuss the color.  In addition, we will be evaluating her “trial smile” for the length, shape and position of her teeth.  If she wanted or needed any changes, we could make those changes in the “trial smile” or note the changes we wanted to make.  Then off of her “approved trial smile” (i.e. approved in writing) our ceramist will make her permanent porcelain veneers, crowns and bridge.

After discussing her treatment with her husband, Brenda returned and we did her cosmetic dental treatment, a total of ten teeth.  It required several office visits, but her entire treatment was completed in less than a months’ time.

Happily, Brenda no longer has a broken down gummy smile.  Now she a beautiful smile with white teeth (she finally chose BL2 tooth color from the tooth shade guide for her porcelain veneers, crowns and bridge).

Dr. Norman Huefner, Orange County Cosmetic Dentistry and Porcelain Veneers. Serving the surrounding cities of Laguna Niguel, Irvine, Newport Beach, Mission Viejo and Rancho Santa Margarita

Smile Makeover with Cosmetic Dentistry Orange County that Creates Beautiful Looking Teeth, Changes Abnormal Lip Shape, Improves Face Proportions and Reduces Over Bite

orange county porcelain veneers

Diane didn't like the appearance of her teeth. She had an "over closed bite" that also effected her lips, cheeks and the appearance of the lower 1/3 to 1/2 of her face. By increasing her vertical dimension with porcelain crowns and porcelain veneers, Diane got a terrific looking smile and better looking face.

Diane didn’t like her teeth and smile.  She had old discolored crowns that were in obvious need of replacement.  She came to our cosmetic dental practice in Orange County to find out what we could do for her?

It would have been easy to just look at Diane’s teeth and recommend replacing the old dentistry, but when looking at Diane’s face, smile and teeth it was very obvious to us that there were some other issues involved. Before advising Diane of her treatment options it was very important that Diane understood all her issues as well.

What’s wrong with her teeth?

We took photos of Diane’s teeth, smile and face and displayed them on our computer monitor.  Then we asked her to describe the things about her teeth that she didn’t like.  She was quick to point out that she didn’t like:

  • the color of her teeth
  • that her side teeth angled inwards
  • that she had a huge overbite
  • that she had many different kinds of dentistry, fillings and crowns, and none of them matched
Her lips?

Next we asked Diane to specifically look at her lips.  Did she like the appearance of her lips?  How would she describe the shape of her lower lip? Diane answered, “Well, my lips are OK, just not very pretty.  I guess I need to go to the plastic surgeon to fix that, right?”  After looking carefully at the shape of her lower lip she said that it wasn’t curved like most normal lips, that she could see that it pushes up in the front.

The lower third of her face
facial improvement with cosmetic dentistry

By "opening her bite" and making porcelain veneers on Diane's front teeth and porcelain crowns on Diane's back teeth, a huge improvement in her facial appearance was achieved.

Then we asked Diane to look a the lower 1/3 to 1/2 of her face.  She said that she didn’t like the wrinkles in her face, but really didn’t understand how that had anything to do with dentistry.

Now it was time to help Diane understand what really was going on with her teeth that effected her lips and lower part of her face and that there were two ways to treat her teeth.  One that would only address her concerns about the appearance of her teeth, and the other would address not only her teeth, but also the shape of both her upper and lower lips and the appearance of the lower  1/3 of her face.

We explained to Diane that she had what in dentistry is commonly referred to as “over closure” or “reduced vertical dimension”.  Over simplifying it, that her back teeth and/or jaw bones were too short so that when she closed her mouth and put her teeth together that the distance between her chin and nose was much smaller than normal.  This “over closure” created a huge over bite, caused her upper lip to cave in on the sides, her lower lip to bunch up in the front, some facial collapse and increased wrinkles or skin folds.  Much of this could be corrected by reconstructing her bite, making her back teeth longer, in balance with her jaw joint and facial muscles.

“You mean dentistry can not only make my teeth look pretty, but also make my face look better as well?”, she asked. Our answer was a resounding “yes.”

We further clarified to Diane what the differences in treatment were.  One treatment would be to treat only her upper teeth with ten porcelain veneers or porcelain crowns.  This would give her pretty teeth and a little better support of her upper lip only.  The other more comprehensive treatment would be to  place porcelain crowns or porcelain veneers on both her back teeth and front teeth.  This would “open her bite”, making the bottom 1/3 of her face longer.  It would give her prettier teeth as well as better face and lips better jaw support.  The end result for the more comprehensive treatment  would obviously give her a much better looking appearance.

After much deliberation, Diane chose the comprehensive approach, treating most all of her teeth with new porcelain crowns or veneers.  How did it look?  Well, you be the judge.  Look at the huge difference between her teeth, lips and lower third of Diane’s face.

Later Diane said that she couldn’t believe how much younger she looked with her cosmetic dentistry.  “I always thought that the only way to make my face look better and younger was plastic surgery.  I never would have guessed that by just making my teeth longer and changing my bite that it would have such a huge effect on my appearance!”

Dr. Norman Huefner, Orange County Cosmetic Dentistry and Porcelain Veneers. Serving the surrounding cities of Laguna Niguel, Irvine, Newport Beach, Mission Viejo and Rancho Santa Margarita

Porcelain Veneers Orange County Transform Ann’s Ugly, Worn, Discolored, Spaced Teeth and Dramatically Enhance Her Overall Facial Appearance

ugly short discolored teeth

For obvious reasons, Ann was extremely self conscious of her teeth. She wouldn't smile and it really effected her self esteem. She was seeking cosmetic dentistry to make her teeth whiter, longer, fill the spaces, fix her decay and old fillings and wanted a beautiful smile.

Ann from Orange County had a serious problem with her teeth that had a very negative effect on her self esteem.  “I hate the way my teeth look,” she said.  “I’m always afraid to smile, knowing that other people are thinking the same thing when they see my teeth, that they’re ugly!”  Ann went on to say, “And of course, I will never smile in photos.”

orange county porcelain veneers

Ann got an amazing smile transformation with ten porcelain veneers by Dr. Huefner. He followed her instructions making her teeth whiter, longer and utilized an "enhanced" smile design from the tooth shape catalog. Ann chose a BL2 shade from the tooth shade guide.

After speaking with Ann for a while it was obvious that the appearance of her teeth had negatively effected her whole life.  She was teased as a child, which haunted her even into adulthood.  Studies have shown that a person’s smile, appearance and self esteem all have a huge impact on a person’s success in their chosen profession and relationships, both social and romantic.

It’s obvious that not everyone is born to have a great smile, and fortunately few people develop teeth that are as bad looking as Ann had.  “Had” is the key word here, as Ann was smart enough to realize that without too much time and effort that she could have a great smile with cosmetic dentistry.  She came to our Orange County Cosmetic Dental practice to see what options she might have to transformation her ugly teeth to beautiful teeth.

When evaluating her teeth Ann listed several things that she specifically did not like about her teeth and wanted changed:

  • teeth too dark, wanted white teeth
  • multiple cavities around her gums
  • space between her front two teeth
  • teeth were too short and worn, wanted longer teeth

The great news for Ann was that we could give her an amazing new smile by placing ten porcelain veneers on her upper teeth and just teeth bleaching for her lower teeth.  If later on she wanted to do porcelain veneers on her lower teeth, that could be done as a second phase of her treatment.

Ann was ecstatic!  She couldn’t believe that her entire porcelain veneer treatment could be completed in less than a months time in just a few dental appointments!

She began treatment almost immediately.  We followed her instructions and lengthened her teeth with the porcelain veneers.  She chose a BL2 shade from the tooth shade guide, which gave her “smile teeth” (the ten teeth she showed when she smiled) all a whiter, consistent color.  The space between her front two teeth was closed and all the decay and old fillings were removed and covered with the porcelain veneers. She chose an “enhanced” smile design from the tooth shape catalog.

Almost in tears when she saw her new smile, Ann said she couldn’t believe how easy the entire process was and wished that she would have gotten her porcelain veneers years ago!

Dr. Norman Huefner, Orange County Cosmetic Dentistry and Porcelain Veneers. Serving the surrounding cities of Laguna Niguel, Irvine, Newport Beach, Mission Viejo and Rancho Santa Margarita

Short Teeth and Gummy Smile Transform Into Great Smile with Laser and Porcelain Veneers Orange County

Conrad's smile makeover after laser gum reshaping to eliminate his "gummy smile" and ten porcelain veneers to give him longer, whiter teeth.

Conrad from Orange County is a very successful businessman.  When you look at him you’d be quick to notice he’s a very professional man, impeccably groomed and dresses for success.  When he speaks you have no doubt in your mind that  he does things, he does them right!  Conrad had the whole package except one thing, the appearance of his teeth.  Although his teeth were healthy, they really didn’t go with the rest of him.  He came to our cosmetic dental practice in Orange County to invest in his appearance by getting a major improvement in his smile.

After discussing his teeth and smile Conrad listed five things he wanted changed or improved:

  • his teeth were too small and short
  • he showed too much gums
  • he wanted whiter teeth
  • he wanted straight teeth
  • he especially didn’t like that his two front teeth didn’t match in color

Conrad didn't like his gummy smile and that his two front teeth were different colors. He wanted his teeth to be longer, whiter and straighter.

After closely evaluating Conrad’s teeth we were pleased to explain to Conrad that solving the problems he listed would be very straight forward utilizing two common cosmetic dentistry techniques – laser gum reshaping and porcelain veneers.

Conrad wanted to get rid of his gummy smile and make his small, short teeth bigger.  By utilizing the dental gum laser some of his excess gum tissue around his teeth could easily and comfortably removed, eliminating his gummy smile.  That would also make his teeth appear a little longer near his gums.  Considered a relatively non-invasive procedure, he would have no bleeding or need any stitches using the dental gum laser.  He might have some minor gum sensitivity the evening of the procedure and need to take some Tylenol or Advil.  He was concerned about the laser gum procedure causing him to miss work, but was happy to learn that he would be able to go to his office the next day, speak and work as usual.  The healing with laser gum reshaping is very quick!

laser gum reshaping to eliminate gummy smile and porcelain veneers

After reshaping and eliminating his gummy smile, ten porcelain veneers were placed on Conrad's upper teeth and his lower teeth whitened with teeth bleaching. He went from having short teeth to normal length teeth for a man of his stature.

Regarding the size of his teeth, and wanting straight whiter teeth, that could be easily be treated with porcelain veneers on his upper teeth and teeth bleaching on his lower teeth.  After looking in the mirror and seeing how many teeth he showed when smiling, Conrad elected to have ten porcelain veneers placed by Dr. Huefner.  After the laser gum procedure, his porcelain veneers were made longer than his natural teeth both at the gum line and edge of the teeth.  Thus the larger teeth would be able to reach his lower lip when he smiled, which is one of our goals.

Conrad chose a BL2 shade from the tooth shade guide.  He wanted his teeth whiter, but not too white.  The BL2 shade was a perfect color for him.  Regarding the shape of his teeth, we chose a “softened” smile style from the tooth shape catalog, a favorite smile design for men in their 30s and 40s.

orange county cosmetic dentistry

With ten porcelain veneers Conrad had a great smile that enhances his professional appearance.

Conrad’s treatment went smooth, without any complications whatsoever.  His entire smile makeover was completed in less than a months time and he was very pleased with the end result of his smile makeover with laser gum reshaping and porcelain veneers.  No more gummy smile, and longer, whiter teeth!

Dr. Norman Huefner, Orange County Cosmetic Dentistry and Porcelain Veneers. Serving the surrounding cities of Laguna Niguel, Irvine, Newport Beach, Mission Viejo and Rancho Santa Margarita

After Front Tooth is Lost, Creating a Beautiful Smile with Porcelain Veneers and Bridge for Dora from Irvine

crooked discolored teeth

Dora had crooked, discolored teeth. She had little interest in cosmetic dentistry until one day she developed a huge infection and lost one of her front teeth.

Dora from Irvine had crooked, discolored teeth.  Although she wasn’t very pleased with the appearance of her teeth and smile, doing something about it by treatment from a cosmetic dentist was never a priority for her….until, she lost one of her front teeth!

Usually if there is just a little infection the gums and tooth can be successfully treated, but in Dora’s case there was so much infection and bone lost around the front tooth that it couldn’t be saved and had to be removed.

missing front tooth

After Dora's infected tooth was removed and the area left to heal a "bony defect" remained. If the missing tooth was treated with either a dental implant or dental bridge, because of the loss of gum and bone the resultant tooth would end up being longer around the gum line than her adjacent teeth. If this was unacceptable with Dora a bone buildup procedure could be done for her, but that would delay her treatment by several months.

Now Dora was ready to do something about her teeth and smile. Unfortunately, because the infection had destroyed so much bone that when the area healed after the extraction there was a “bony defect”, meaning the bone wasn’t at the same level as her adjacent teeth.  This had esthetic implications, as when Dora smiled some of the lack of bone and gums could be seen.

Dora had to make some informed choices as to which way she wanted to complete her dental treatment.  We offered her these options:

  • A traditional 3 teeth porcelain bridge.  Drawback, if we only did that we would have to match the color of her other teeth and the false tooth attached to the bridge would end up longer around the gums because of the bony defect
  • Surgical treating the bony defect first, building up the bone and correcting the defect, then  traditional 3 teeth porcelain bridge that would also be made to match her other teeth.  Down side, the surgical procedure would take several months to heal up.
  • Surgical treatment of the bony defect and dental implant.  This would take approximately six months but only one tooth would then need to be made for her (replacing the one lost), and that one tooth made to fit onto the dental implant would be made to match the color of her other adjacent teeth as well.  For Dora, six months of treatment and healing was a huge drawback.
  • If Dora wanted all her teeth to be straight and a whiter, more attractive color then we could place a 3 teeth porcelain bridge, and porcelain veneers on five of her other teeth, resulting in eight beautifully aligned teeth.  However, the one tooth would still be longer near the gum line if she didn’t have the surgical treatment to build up the bone first.  Advantage, it would achieve a huge improvement in her smile!
temporary bridge and veneers

Dora in her temporary bridge and five temporary veneers. She approved of the design of her new smile, including the length, shape and color of her teeth. The longer tooth on the bridge was acceptable to her and gave us written permission to complete the fabrication of her new bridge and veneers following her approved design.

Dora was anxious be proceed with treatment, and did not want to go through the surgical procedure to build up the bone.  She accepted the last option, the 3 teeth porcelain bridge and 5 porcelain veneers, knowing that the false tooth on the bridge would then half to be a little longer around her gums.  Her teeth were prepared and a 3 teeth temporary bridge and 5 temporary veneers were placed to confirm the shape, color and length of her teeth.  Also to make sure that she was “ok” with the one longer false tooth on her bridge.  If she wasn’t, then she could still have the procedure to build up the bone.

porcelain bridge and veneers irvine

Dora's final smile with a three unit porcelain bridge and five porcelain veneers. Now she had straight, white teeth and no more missing tooth in the front of her mouth.

After wearing the temporary bridge and veneers for several days to adjust to her new smile and Dora returned to our office to give her written approval as to the design of her new smile.  She continued to wear the temporary bridge and veneers for two more weeks and then returned again for the final placement of her new porcelain bridge and porcelain veneers.  The end result for this wonderful lady from Irvine was superb, a huge improvement on Dora’s smile before losing her front tooth.  Also, Dora’s teeth were whiter and straight now, two things that she definitely wanted.

Dr. Norman Huefner, Orange County Cosmetic Dentistry and Porcelain Veneers. Serving the surrounding cities of Laguna Niguel, Irvine, Newport Beach, Mission Viejo and Rancho Santa Margarita

“Instant Orthodontics” – Going From Having Crooked, Yellow teeth to Getting Straight, White Teeth in Just a Few Weeks with Cosmetic Dentistry

mission viejo porcelain veneers

To correct her crooked, yellow teeth Allison had twenty porcelain veneers. She wanted a "bright, white smile" and chose a BL1 tooth shade.

Allison is a forty-ish mother of three from Mission Viejo.  When her children were growing up she always put them and the family first.  “Finally the kids are grown and out of the house and it’s my time to do something for myself,” Allison said.  She went on to say that she hated her crooked, yellow teeth, but since she was an older adult she couldn’t even fathom the thought of going through a couple of years of braces.  We had treated one of Allison’s Mission Viejo neighbors, correcting her smile with porcelain veneers.  The neighbor in turn, referred Allison to our cosmetic dental practice to discuss how we might be able to help her?

She told us that she finally had the time and money to fix her teeth and some of the things about her teeth and smile that she didn’t like:

  • my teeth are too crooked, but I won’t even consider doing braces
  • my teeth are way too yellow and I’d like to have bright, white teeth
  • I’ve seen people who have bad fake looking caps, and if I decide to go ahead and do cosmetic dentistry then you have to promise me that my teeth will look natural and “real”
mission viejo instant orthodontics

When teeth are crooked, patients can be treated either with braces or porcelain veneering. Braces make the teeth straight, but don't do anything to correct the color, cavities, any malformation or chipping of the teeth. In Allison's case a technique called "instant orthodontics" with porcelain veneering was utilized which gave her the beautiful, bright white smile with straight teeth that she had always wanted.

We explained to Allison that in her case we could use an advanced form of cosmetic dentistry with porcelain veneering that is oftentimes referred to as “instant orthodontics”.  We wouldn’t actually be doing orthodontics per se, but the reason it is called “instant orthodontics”is because the porcelain veneers make the crooked teeth look straight and the dentistry is done in just a few weeks (almost “instantly” compared to years of traditional orthodontic treatment).  Although in many cases orthodontics is the best way to go, if the teeth are malformed, broken, have large fillings, severely discolored, etc., the orthodontics doesn’t treat that aspect.  But the porcelain veneers could correct all of those things, allowing us to create a beautiful smile with bright, white, straight and even teeth!

Allison was excited and began her porcelain veneer treatment the following week.  Since all of her upper and lower front teeth were discolored and crooked she chose to do twenty porcelain veneers.  She chose a “softened” smile style from the tooth shape catalog and a BL1 shade from the tooth shade guide.

The end results was the smile Allison had always dreamed of having with straight white beautiful looking teeth!

Dr. Norman Huefner, Orange County Cosmetic Dentistry and Porcelain Veneers. Serving the surrounding cities of Laguna Niguel, Irvine, Newport Beach, Mission Viejo and Rancho Santa Margarita

Revitalizing Charlene’s Smile – New Porcelain Veneers, Bridges and Crowns for Rancho Santa Margarita Businesswoman

rancho santa margarita porcelain veneers

Below: Charlene was unhappy with the appearance of her old dentistry which was failing. She had spacing between her upper front teeth, one tooth was very dark, the bridges on her side teeth didn't match anything. She wanted a brighter, whiter smile, more becoming of a successful Orange County businesswoman. Above: After doing some laser gum reshaping to reduce some of her gummy smile, her teeth were made slightly longer with three porcelain veneers, one porcelain crown and two porcelain bridges.

Charlene from Rancho Santa Margarita had a lot of old dentistry, but with new decay and break down her old dentistry was failing.  Over the years almost all of her teeth had crowns or huge fillings.  When she came to us to consult regarding replacing her old dentistry she listed her goals:

  • She wanted a whiter, brighter smile
  • Her teeth were too short
  • Her teeth were multicolored, and she wanted them all the same color
  • She is a professional woman with a thriving business, and she felt that being as successful as she was that her teeth should look much better than they do
  • Her upper left lateral incisor was extremely dark
  • There was spacing between some of her front teeth

When we evaluated her dentistry it was very apparent that through her entire life he dentistry had always been “problem focused” dentistry.  If she had a broken tooth, the dentist placed a single crown.  If she lost a tooth, he placed a bridge.  If she had a large cavity, he would place a large filling.  The results of doing all of her dentistry one tooth or one area at a time was that all of her teeth had different colors and none of her dentistry matched.  The way to correct that was to replace all of her old dentistry on her top teeth at the same time.  This would result in being able to give her the whiter, brighter looking teeth that she wanted and all the teeth being the same color, design and in proportion.

Another thing Charlene really wanted was longer teeth.  But on closer look she also had a “gummy smile“, meaning that when she smiled her upper lip went up and showed a lot of her gums above her upper front teeth.  We suggested that we would get the best esthetic result and eliminate her gummy smile by doing some very conservative laser gum reshaping.  Doing that in combination with making Charlene’s teeth slightly longer would give her an ideal looking smile, very proportional and symmetric.

Because of time and financial considerations, Charlene requested that we break her treatment up into several phases.  In complying with her requests, the first phase would be doing her upper teeth.  The second phase would be having several dental implants placed where she was missing numerous lower back teeth.  The third phase would be completing the dental reconstruction of her lower teeth.

Charlene’s first phase of treatment consisted of first, doing the laser gum reshaping and then redoing all her upper teeth.  We replacing the two porcelain bridges she had on her left and right back teeth.  Also, all four of her upper incisors were treated, three with porcelain veneers and the very dark one with a porcelain crown.  A “enhanced” LVI smile style from the tooth shape catalog was utilized and a shade BL2 from the tooth shade guide.

The end result for Charlene from Rancho Santa Margarita was a beautiful result and an amazingly improved smile.  All of the dental concerns that she originally had were successfully addressed.

Dr. Norman Huefner, Orange County Cosmetic Dentistry and Porcelain Veneers. Serving the surrounding cities of Laguna Niguel, Irvine, Newport Beach, Mission Viejo and Rancho Santa Margarita
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