August 15, 2018

Model and Mrs. Nevada Beauty Pageant Winner Comes to Dr. Huefner for Orange County Porcelain Veneers Before the Mrs. U.S.-Globe Beauty Pageant

orange county porcelain veneers

Tierra got her beautiful new smile with eight porcelain veneers by Dr. Huefner. She placed in the top fifteen at the Mrs. U.S.-Globe beauty pageant and is now pursuing her modeling career.

Tierra, a dancer and model and mother of two, had short, worn teeth.  After becoming Mrs. Nevada, which entitled her to compete in the Mrs. U.S.-Globe beauty pageant, Tierra realized that she was in desperate need of cosmetic dentistry to enhance her smile.  Knowing that longer, whiter, prettier teeth would enhance her chances in the Mrs. U.S.-Globe pageant and her modeling career in general, Tierra flew out to Dr. Huefner’s cosmetic dentistry practice for a smile makeover with porcelain veneers.

short worn teeth due to bruxism habit

Tierra's short, worn teeth made her smile look 20-30 years older than she was. She knew that by making her teeth the same length as they were before her grinding shortened them she would have a much prettier smile.

When Tierra arrived for her initial consultation we took photos of her teeth and smile.  Tierra was a nighttime bruxer (one who grinds their teeth at night when sleeping) and had worn her teeth down considerably.  Her teeth were short and square and a slight yellowish color.  Dr. Huefner pointed out that her teeth actually looked twenty to thirty years older than she was!  Also, the edges of her teeth were flat.  To give Tierra a more attractive, feminine and youthful looking smile Dr. Huefner recommended placing eight porcelain veneers.  The new porcelain veneers would be longer, rounder and whiter in color.  The edges of her upper teeth (i.e. edges of her new porcelain veneers) would follow the curved contour of her lower lip, called “following the smile line,” rather than being flat and straight. The end result would be a much more attractive smile and would help her in the beauty pageant competition and also her modeling career.

eight porcelain veneers laguna niguel

Tierra, with her new smile is now a successful model.

Tierra began her cosmetic dentistry almost immediately, as the Mrs. U.S.-Globe beauty pageant was right around the corner.  Her eight porcelain veneers were fabricated in two weeks time and the resulting new smile created by Dr. Huefner was stunning.  Since Tierra is still a nighttime bruxer, Dr. Huefner also fabricated a night guard bruxism appliance to keep her from wearing her lower teeth down.

Mrs. Nevada and Dr. Huefner at Mrs. U.S.-Globe beauty pageant

Tierra as Mrs. Nevada with Dr. Huefner at Mrs. U.S.-Globe beauty pageant

Dr. Huefner, being a pageant judge and sponsor naturally attended the Mrs. Globe pageant and was there to watch Tierra. She competed extremely well, was a crowd and judge favorite, and easily made it into the top fifteen.

If you’d like to see a recent commercial video Tierra was featured in, please go to and turn on your speaker.

beauty pageant porcelain veneers

Tierra's new porcelain veneers were longer, whiter and more naturally shaped than her short, worn teeth. The edges of her upper veneers followed the curve of her lower lip when she smiled, called "following the smile line." All and all, Dr. Huefner created a much more attractive and youthful smile for Tierra.

Please feel free to comment or ask questions about Tierra’s porcelain veneer treatment.

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

Worn, Prematurely Aged Teeth Given New Life to Brent’s Smile with Porcelain Veneers Irvine

porcelain veneers irvine

Brent treated his chipped worn teeth with porcelain veneers utilizing a "softened" smile design from the LVI tooth shape catalog and a BL3 shade from the tooth shade guide. After doing his upper porcelain veneers, Brent decided to also have us place porcelain veneers on his lower teeth.

Brent is quite successful, both in his business and as an athlete.  Unfortunately his drive to being the best that he could be resulted in a severe teeth grinding (bruxism) habit.  Thus over the years he severely wore his teeth down.  The results was that his teeth and smile were prematurely aged by 20-30 years!

After years of hard work, commitment and dedication Brent achieved a lifelong athletic goal and became internationally recognized.  Along with his fame he started doing public appearances, speaking engagements and he even was scheduled to be interviewed on TV!  But someone who always prided himself on being, and looking his best, Brent realized that he needed to do something quick to get his teeth and smile into shape!

Brent came into our office for a cosmetic dentistry consultation.  He very quickly pointed out his urgency and that his cosmetic dental work needed to be completed fast!  Also, that he didn’t want “pretty boy” fake, white teeth.  He wanted whiter teeth, but it was very important to him that they look natural, “as if they were his real teeth and hadn’t had any cosmetic dentistry at all.”

worn teeth from bruxism

Being very successful in both business and sports contributed to Brent's tooth grinding habit, which prematurely wore his teeth down to be 20-30 years older than his age. When Brent started doing public speaking and was scheduled to appear on TV he decided it was time to get his smile into shape with cosmetic dentistry.

Fortunately for Brent, we happily replied that all those goals could easily be met.  Having healthy teeth that had no decay, but were just severely worn, discolored with the years and somewhat crooked and asymmetrical, he was the perfect candidate for porcelain veneers.  And best for all, his smile could be completed in just a couple weeks time.

Not being one who has difficulty making decisions, Brent scheduled his treatment right away.  We treated his upper teeth with ten porcelain veneers.  His entire treatment went smooth without any challenges and was completed on time.  A week after placing porcelain veneers on his lower teeth, Brent came back, saying it didn’t make any sense having upper teeth that looked so good and lower ones that didn’t, and that now he wanted to do his lower teeth as well.  Thus, we did ten porcelain veneers on Brent’s lower teeth, that were also completed in just two weeks time.

Brent was involved in the choice of “smile style” and tooth color.  He chose thesoftened” smile style from the LVI Dickerson smile library, which is a very natural and masculine design of tooth shapes, which were also more age appropriate for him compared to the much older tooth shape he had from his years of teeth grinding and wearing down his original teeth.  Brent also chose a BL3 tooth shade from the tooth shade guide, which is slightly lighter than the lightest natural tooth color (B1), but still has very natural translucency.  This was very important to Brent, that they “not look like Chiclets or bad crowns”.

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

Tiny teeth that wore down by teeth grinding “grow up” to beautiful adult smile with porcelain veneers orange county

orange county porcelain veneers

Andrea's smile makeover after laser gum reshaping and porcelain veneers by Dr. Huefner. Her treatment took approximately one month's time and she went from having extremely tiny teeth to normal size teeth and incredible smile!

Andrea had graduated from college.  In fact she had done very well, excellent grades and honors.  She got her first job but disappointingly, wasn’t taken very serious by her boss and colleagues.  Andrea knew it wasn’t her brains, eduction, attitude, effort or work ethics.  She knew what the problem was….her teeth!  Admittedly, Andrea was small in stature, but her teeth were extremely small, in the smallest 3% of the population. And when she smiled, not only didn’t you see much teeth, but she had a slightly gummy smile.  All these “dental features” made her look like she was in middle school when she smiled.  People do judge, and perceptions are reality to many.  In an adult world, dealing with fellow employees and customers her smile was holding her back, she knew this!

So, how does one go from small baby-size teeth to adult teeth? Cosmetic dentistry was the answer.  Andrea’s mother was a dental hygienist, and referred Andrea to Dr. Huefner’s cosmetic dental practice.

short teeth from bruxism

Before cosmetic dentistry Andrea had very tiny teeth and a gummy smile. Although in her mid 20s, her teeth and smile made her look ten years younger.

Upon careful examination it was noted that not only did Andrea have very small teeth to begin with, but she had a “grinding habit” (bruxism) for a number of years and had worn off about 20% of the enamel on her teeth, making them appear even shorter.  Also, she had some “excess” gums over her teeth, that also made her teeth look shorter and the slightly gummy smile made her look younger as well.

short teeth after laser gum reshaping, before placing porcelain veneers

Before placing Andrea's porcelain veneers her excess gums were reshaped with the dental gum laser. Although that reduced some of her gummy smile and made her teeth a little longer, they were still too short. Porcelain veneers to lengthen her teeth was the next step.

Andrea and her mother were pleased to learn that she could easily be treated by combining two very common cosmetic dentistry procedures.  First, we would reduce her gummy smile and lengthen her teeth at the gum line by using our dental gum laser.  That is a short, almost effortless procedure, essentially painless, that dissolves away unwanted excess gum tissue. Then we would lengthen all her teeth at their edges by placing porcelain veneers on her front and side teeth, and onlay restorations on several off her back teeth that had really worn down.

porcelain veneers coto de caza

To Andrea's delight, we were able to lengthen her short teeth considerably with porcelain veneers to now have teeth with an average tooth length. The difference in her appearance between the before and after photos showed that she looked like she matured over ten years to her actual age.

We proceeded almost immediately with her treatment, and Andrea got a fabulous result! We created for her a normal, adult-size smile with porcelain veneers and she almost instantly looked like she went from age thirteen to her real age, mid 20s in just a months time.  Since Andrea “was still a bruxer” (teeth grinder) we completed her treatment by fabricating a night guard anti-bruxism appliance that she would wear over her teeth at night to protect her teeth and new porcelain veneers.

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

Teeth Grinding (Bruxism) Can Destroy Teeth

teeth grinding

This 50 year old patient was a severe bruxer. His night time grinding wore away 50% of the original length of his lower front teeth above the gum line. Fortunately this was caught in time and there was enough tooth structure left to allow protective crown treatment. If more of the teeth had worn away this wouldn't have been possible and a denture, bridge or implants may have been the only treatments that could have been offered to him.

The silent killer of teeth is bruxism or teeth grinding.  For most people, this happens at night while they’re sleeping.  However, oftentimes the spouse or sleeping partner will hear the annoying noise of tooth against tooth wearing away.

Tooth enamel is the hardest thing in the human body, and yet it is not indestructible.  After years of attrition, or wearing down their teeth, the grinding patient eventually grinds completely through the white enamel and into the more yellow root dentin under it.  Unfortunately the root dentin is only about 25% as hard as the enamel, and thus the rate of wearing away of the tooth drastically speeds up once the enamel covering had worn a hole through it exposing the root dentin.  When you look down at a tooth that had been worn through the enamel it will be clearly obvious as there will be two layers, an outside ring of whiter enamel and a center portion of yellow root dentin.

bruxism treatment

Looking down at the teeth one can see the "bull's eye" appearance of severe attrition. Once the protective enamel has worn away the attrition greatly accelerates. Eventual tooth loss is the result in situations like this that do not undergo appropriate treatment.

But it doesn’t end here.  The damage to the teeth continue on over the years.  When several millimeters of teeth have worn away the teeth then start wearing into a third area of the tooth called the secondary or repairative root dentin.  This area is again a circular area in the center of the visible top of the tooth, but this third area is darker yellow or brown.  The give away that this point has been reached is that there are now three visible layers and the tooth will have the appearance of a bull’s eye with three concentric rings.

dental night guard appliance

A dental night guard is a custom made appliance of thin plastic that fits over the tops of the teeth to protect the damaging effects of tooth against tooth wear.

If you could go back in time, this secondary root dentin is the area that once was occupied by the tooth nerve and pulp in a younger, healthy tooth.  However, due to aging and trauma, the tooth nerve recedes away from the impinging trauma, and in attempts to protect or heal itself, the tooth puts up a layer of internal tooth.  It is this protective layer that is center of the “bull’s eye”.  Usually this means the tooth has lost at least 30-50% of the original tooth that first appeared above the gum line (dentists call this the “clinical crown”) when the patient was a youngster.

One can easily understand that the tooth will continue to wear down until there is very little tooth there and oftentimes dental patients waits too long before they finally decide to go back to their dentist and to do something about it, and then it’s too late.  If the tooth can’t be saved or crowned, then a denture, bridge or implant might be the only treatment left.

bruxism appliance

Most night guards are made to fit over the patient's upper teeth. This photo shows a night guard made on top of a model of the patient's upper teeth. The dentist will then fit the appliance to the patient's bite.

Fortunately for most patients who go to the dentist the damaging effects of bruxism can be detected early enough to treat.  Almost always the most preventive approach is to make a dental appliance to be worn over the teeth while the patient sleeps.  It’s called a “night guard” or “bruxism appliance.”  This slows down the process, but for most people bruxism cannot be stopped, and thus these appliances only slow down the process and doesn’t not cure it.  There are many instances where the dentist will determine that placing a protective crown on several teeth are necessary to preserve what is there and prevent further loss of tooth enamel and dentin.  Dental crowns seldom wear down, and if they do it is only the fraction of the wear that would occur if the tooth hadn’t received a protective crown.

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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