August 15, 2018

How Do I Keep My Porcelain Veneers White?

Porcelain veneers are designed to be stain-resistant, but this doesn’t mean that they will maintain their shade forever. As always, practicing good dental hygiene is the best way to preserve the appearance of your teeth in addition to their health.

When your porcelain veneers are first placed, they will have a polished, glossy sheen. In order to maintain this sheen, use a non-abrasive toothpaste. Dr. Huefner can recommend a safe brand.

If you consume lots of coffee, tea, or red wine, try using a straw whenever possible to bypass your veneers. When you come in for a routine dental check-up, Dr. Huefner will polish off any surface stains that have accumulated on your veneers.

Choosing the right cosmetic dentist is the best way to ensure the quality of your porcelain veneers lasts. If your veneers were not placed by an experienced cosmetic dentist, the edges of your teeth may stain and reveal where the veneer was bonded in place. Well-placed and well-maintained porcelain veneers can last for over a decade without staining or fading.

If you have further questions about porcelain veneers, please contact Huefner Sensational Smiles today or call (949) 495-6322 to schedule a smile consultation with our experienced Orange County cosmetic dentist. We serve patients in Irvine, Laguna Niguel, Mission Viejo, Newport Beach, and surrounding areas of Orange County, California.

Orange County Cosmetic Dentist Eliminates Pointy Teeth that Stick Out with Porcelain Veneers

pointed teeth

Heather didn’t like her “pointy” eye teeth and the fact that they stuck out, were crooked and discolored (lower photo). Eight porcelain veneers (top photo) corrected her concerns and gave her a perfect smile.

Heather’s teeth were crooked, discolored, had some chipping on her front two teeth, but most of all she hated the way her eye teeth (upper cuspid teeth) were pointed and stuck out.  She was engaged to be married in a few months, and wanted a beautiful smile for her wedding.  When she came to see Orange County cosmetic dentist Dr. Huefner she had already seen an orthodontist, but after hearing his recommendations she knew that “braces weren’t for her”.  First of all, the orthodontist said it would take 18-24 months to make her teeth straight.  But when she asked about fixing the color and shape of her teeth, the orthodontist said he couldn’t do anything about that.

Then she started researching different ways of treating “pointy crooked discolored teeth”, and came to Dr. Huefner for a cosmetic dentistry consultation.  Heather was pleased to learn that Dr. Huefner was very sure that he could give her an amazing smile before her wedding, and the entire treatment could be done in less than a month’s time!  His recommendations was to place eight porcelain veneers on her upper teeth, slightly adjust the shape of her lower teeth (called “enameloplasty”) and finally bleach (whiten) her lower teeth.  When Heather asked how white could Dr. Huefner make her teeth with porcelain veneers, she was pleased to learn that she could choose the color, and Dr. Huefner’s ceramist will make her veneers (teeth) as white as she wanted.  Heather chose shade BL1.

She was excited, and began her treatment  that week.  And as Dr. Huefner has promised, Heather’s treatment was completed with the 3-4 week time frame.  Now, with a beautiful smile and having white, straight non-pointy teeth, Heather is now ready for her wedding!

Dr. Norman Huefner, Orange County cosmetic dentist serving Laguna Niguel, Newport Beach, Irvine, Mission Viejo, Newport Beach and Rancho Santa Margarita.

Beautiful white, straight teeth and no more pointy cuspids, Heather is ready for her wedding photos.

Beautiful white, straight teeth and no more pointy cuspids, Heather is ready for her wedding photos.

Laguna Niguel Cosmetic Dentist Whitens and Widens Chelsea’s Smile with Porcelain Veneers

Photo below: Chelsea didn’t like her teeth and smile, they were too dark, crooked and her side teeth leaned in way too much. Photo above: Laguna Niguel cosmetic dentist Dr. Huefner created a beautiful new smile for her with eight porcelain veneers

Photo below: Chelsea didn’t like her teeth and smile, they were too dark, crooked and her side teeth leaned in way too much. Photo above: Laguna Niguel cosmetic dentist Dr. Huefner created a beautiful new smile for her with eight porcelain veneers

Chelsea has some “issues” with her teeth and smile…..she was very unhappy with their appearance.  Specifically, she thought the color of her teeth were too dark, and her side teeth (bicuspids) leaned in.  “When I smile in photos my side teeth lean in so much that all you see are my dark front teeth,” she told Laguna Niguel cosmetic dentist Dr. Huefner.

She thought about doing braces, but since she was in her late 30s, she just didn’t have the energy to go through a couple years of orthodontics.  She had also considered bleaching, to make her teeth whiter.  However, since she already had a veneer on one of her front teeth, she knew that her teeth would get whiter, but the veneer would stay the same color.  “Besides,” Chelsea told Dr. Huefner, “in addition to the color and crookedness of my teeth, I don’t like the shape either.  My eye teeth are too pointy.”

After discussing the things she didn’t like about her teeth and smile, she asked Dr. Huefner if he thought that porcelain veneers would solve her concerns? Dr. Huefner say, “Absolutely, I think porcelain veneers would be the perfect solution for you!”

A couple weeks later Laguna Niguel cosmetic dentist Dr. Huefner created eight porcelain veneers for Chelsea finally had the smile she had always wanted.  A very happy lady with an extremely beautiful smile!

Dr. Norman Huefner, Laguna Niguel cosmetic dentist, also serving Orange County, CA, Irvine, Mission Viejo, Rancho Santa

Chelsea just loved her new smile. Her teeth were whiter, like she always wanted. Also, they were straight and even.

Chelsea just loved her new smile. Her teeth were whiter, like she always wanted. Also, they were straight and even.




Planning Your Smile Makeover

If you are embarrassed to show your teeth when you smile, it may be time to consider a smile makeover. Today’s cosmetic dentistry techniques, materials, and technology can address virtually any flaw that is compromising the look of your smile – including cracked teeth, stained teeth, uneven teeth, broken teeth, and gaps between teeth.

Our experienced Orange County cosmetic dentist Dr. Huefner has been helping patients throughout the Laguna Niguel area transform their smiles for decades. When planning your smile makeover, we will consider several different factors, including:

  • The specific cosmetic dental problems you want to correct
  • Your own goals for your smile
  • Your lifestyle
  • Your budget

There are usually many different ways to fix a certain smile flaw, which gives you flexibility when choosing the treatments and procedures you want to include with your smile. In some cases, only a single treatment (such as porcelain veneers) may be necessary for a full smile makeover. Other patients may need a combination of treatments – such as teeth whitening, dental crowns, and porcelain veneers – in order to achieve the results they are looking for.

Dr. Huefner will examine your teeth and make a personalized recommendation based on the factors discussed above. The most effective options will be presented to you through our advanced patient education software. If porcelain veneers will be part of your smile makeover, Dr. Huefner can fit you with a “trial smile” of temporary restorations so you can test out your new smile design before we make it permanent.

If you are ready to discuss your smile makeover options in more depth with an experienced Orange County cosmetic dentist, please contact Huefner Sensational Smiles today or call (949) 495-6322 to schedule an appointment. We serve patients in Irvine, Laguna Niguel, Mission Viejo, Newport Beach, and surrounding areas of Orange County, California.

Lumineers vs. Regular Porcelain Veneers: What’s the Difference?

If you are considering porcelain veneers to enhance your smile, you may be curious about Lumineers and other name-brand variations that are advertised as an alternative to traditional veneers. The main difference between regular porcelain veneers and brands like Lumineers (along with Vivaneers, Nano, Emax, and Durathin) is their relative thickness. These ultlra-thin varieties usually require no preparation of the teeth before they are applied, which is appealing for many patients. Additionally, they tend to require less reshaping than traditional veneers.

However, ultra-thin Lumineers may not provide the best aesthetic results for some patients. If they are placed on teeth that are already sufficiently thick, you may be left with a smile that looks and feels overly “bulky.” Most people require some preparation of the tooth to ensure the veneer fits and looks as natural as possible.

Another factor to consider with ultra-thin veneers is their transparency. The thickness of our Empress porcelain veneers at Huefner Sensational Smiles easily conceals any stains and discoloration on the supporting tooth. In contrast, Lumineers are so thin that the darker color of a tooth may still show through to a degree, making your smile less bright than it could have been. However, if significant discoloration isn’t a concern in your case, then Lumineers may be a good option to consider.

To find out which type of porcelain veneers is right for you, please contact Huefner Sensational Smiles today or call (949) 495-6322 to schedule a cosmetic dentistry consultation. We serve patients in Laguna Niguel, Irvine, Newport Beach, Mission Viejo, and surrounding areas of Orange County, California.

Combining Teeth Whitening with Porcelain Veneers

Teeth whitening and porcelain veneers are two of the most popular cosmetic dentistry procedures we perform. Alone, each procedure can dramatically transform the appearance of your smile. However, for certain candidates, they are most effective when used together.

Porcelain veneers are generally used on the teeth that show when you smile (called your “smile line”). Different people will show a different number of teeth when they smile; for example, some only show six or eight, while others with wider smiles – such as Julia Roberts – show twelve.

Choosing the right number of porcelain veneers is important to ensure a uniform smile line; if you place too few veneers, there may be a significant contrast between the color of your natural teeth and the color of your veneers, unless you deliberately tint your veneers a duller shade.

Since most people want the brightest smile possible, using teeth whitening first – before veneers are placed – is often an excellent option. Teeth whitening can improve the shade of your natural teeth, allowing you to tint your veneers a brighter shade of white while ensuring your smile line is seamless.

However, it’s important to note that some teeth contain deep intrinsic stains that cannot be removed by teeth whitening. If this is the case, you may need to place more porcelain veneers to mask these stains. Our experienced Orange County cosmetic dentist Dr. Huefner will discuss all of your options with you in detail after carefully examining the condition of your teeth.

If you have further questions about teeth whitening or porcelain veneers, please contact Huefner Sensational Smiles today or call (949) 495-6322 to schedule a cosmetic dentistry consultation. We serve patients in Laguna Niguel, Irvine, Newport Beach, Mission Viejo, and surrounding areas of Orange County.

Laguna Niguel Cosmetic Dentist and Porcelain Veneers for Cynthia’s Dark Crooked Teeth

porcelain veneers shade BL2

Lower Photo: Cynthia had crooked discolored teeth. Upper Photo: Cynthia’s beautiful smile with ten porcelain veneers shade BL2 by Dr. Huefner.

Cynthia had slightly crooked teeth, but they were also discolored and worn somewhat.  She came to see Laguna Niguel cosmetic dentist Dr. Huefner because she wanted, finally, to get a great smile with beautiful teeth.  Dr. Huefner asked her how long this had bothered her.  Cynthia answered, “Since I was in high school.”  After examining Cynthia’s teeth, Dr. Huefner told her that she had been taking very good care of her teeth.  She had no cavities or gum problems whatsoever.  One solution was to have orthodontics, and Cynthia’s crooked teeth weren’t too bad and could probably be straightened with Invisalign orthodontics in less than a year’s time.  After that she could bleach her teeth, but would have to wear a retainer for years to come.   The second way was for Dr. Huefner to place porcelain veneers.  She could choose how many teeth she wanted to look perfect and the actual color that the veneers were made.  The porcelain veneer treatment could be completed in just a couple weeks.

It didn’t take long for Cynthia to decide on which treatment she would do.  “I really love the idea of porcelain veneers because I’ve already tried teeth bleaching, but it didn’t whiten my teeth nearly enough.  Also, I don’t have time in my life to do orthodontics.  I travel a lot for business, and now that I’ve finally decided on getting my smile fixed, I want it done as soon as possible,” Cynthia told Dr. Huefner.

After looking at her teeth very closely, Cynthia noticed that she shows ten to twelve teeth when she smiles.  “I want my teeth whiter, and know if I don’t do porcelain veneers on at least ten teeth that I show so much that it would look odd if I did less than that,” Cynthia said.  So, she asked Dr. Huefner to make her ten porcelain veneers, and then chose shade BL2 shade.  Dr. Huefner told her that the BL2 was whiter than most people’s teeth, and would be whiter than her lower teeth, but since she didn’t show so much of her lower teeth he didn’t think it would hardly be noticeable.

Cynthia’s porcelain veneers were completed in less than three weeks time and she got a beautiful smile as a result.

Dr. Norman Huefner, Laguna Niguel cosmetic dentist,

Irvine Porcelain Veneers for a Sensational Smile Makeover

Irvine porcelain veneers

After Laynie’s smile makeover with porcelain veneers Dr. Huefner took these portraits of Laynie and her beautiful new smile.

Laynie, a beautiful young lady, had just graduated from college.  She was very concerned about the appearance of her teeth and just about to start a new career, this was the time for her to finally do something about it.  When she came to see Dr. Huefner for her cosmetic dentistry consultation, Laynie and Dr. Huefner discussed her teeth and smile in detail and Laynie narrowed it down to correcting four things:

  • Laynie didn't like either the way her teeth or gums looked.  She came to Dr. Huefner to discuss all her options with cosmetic dentistry.

    Laynie didn’t like either the way her teeth or gums looked. She came to Dr. Huefner to discuss all her options with cosmetic dentistry.

    she wanted whiter color teeth

  • her teeth looked short, and she wanted longer teeth
  • she had gingivitis, thus her gums were red and swollen
  • her left central incisor tooth was much darker than all the rest

Dr. Huefner recommended a plan of treatment that would solve all the problems that Laynie wanted corrected.  First, she would see Dr. Huefner’s dental hygienist and have her teeth cleaned and her gums treated.  By doing that and improving her oral hygiene, the redness of her gums would disappear and instead have a healthy, pink color.

irvine porcelain veneers and laser gum reshaping with dental gum laser

By treating her gingivitis and then doing some minor gum reshaping with the dental gum laser Laynie got healthy looking pink gums and teeth that weren’t too short. By bleaching Laynie’s lower teeth and then placing porcelain veneers on eight of her upper teeth. Laynie got the beautiful smile with white, even teeth that she wanted.

Second, since Laynie wanted longer teeth Dr. Huefner would do some minor laser gum reshaping with his dental gum laser.  This would eliminate some of the “gummy smile” that she had and give her more normal length front teeth.

Third, Laynie would have her lower teeth bleached.

Finally, Dr. Huefner would place porcelain veneers on eight of Laynie’s upper front teeth.  By doing the last two things Laynie would have the whiter, more attractive teeth that she wanted and they would all be the same color.  There were no major problems with Laynie’s lower teeth, so the bleaching the lower teeth by themselves would suffice to overcome the problem she had with yellow lower teeth.

BL2 shade porcelain veneers

Laynie’s smile makeover looked terrific! A beautiful, healthy and natural looking smile for a stunning young lady. Laynie’s total treatment time took just about a month.

Laynie accepted Dr. Huefner’s treatment plan and her treatment went as planned.  It took just over a month’s time to accomplish all treatment and the result of Laynie’s Irvine porcelain veneers treatment was amazing.  An absolutely beautiful smile for a very attractive young lady was achieved!

Dr. Norman Huefner, Orange County Cosmetic Dentist, Irvine Porcelain Veneers

Dark Discolored Teeth Fixed with Porcelain Veneers

multicolored teeth in need of smile makeover

Scott didn’t like his multicolored teeth and felt he would look more professional in his business if his crooked, discolored teeth were straight and all the same color. Of the eight teeth that showed when Scott smiled, there were five different colors. Certainly the crown on his front tooth didn’t match any of his teeth, and the other front tooth that had a root canal discolored to a very unattractive brown color. Yes, Scott was the perfect candidate for cosmetic dentistry.

Discolored Teeth a problem for Scott

Scott is a Irvine businessman who is very successful.  He has a number of employees and most of the time is the main person dealing with his customers.  He came to Dr. Huefner’s cosmetic dental practice with one huge complaint.  “I hate my discolored teeth!”, he told Dr. Huefner.  Dr. Huefner told Scott that he understood that really bothered him, but asked him if he would explain a bit more why it bothers him so much?

After a short moment of thinking, Scott started to tell his story.  When he was in high school he used to play a lot of basketball.  One day the game got a little rough and Scott found himself flat on the floor, breaking off a good part of the edge of one of his front teeth.  He went to his family dentist who ended up doing root canal treatments on both front teeth to stop the pain.  Then the dentist fixed the broken tooth by placing a porcelain fused to metal crown on it.

Scott was happy just to be out of pain and have a new tooth again, but his happiness ended later on.  The dentist had made the crown too white, not really matching any of his other teeth, and the adjacent tooth that also had a root canal but wasn’t capped started turning a very dark color.  Fast forward twenty years later, Scott became increasingly self conscious of his discolored teeth and the fact that they were crooked.  “I’m an important leader of a successful business and am constantly dealing face to face with customers every day.  I know it’s time for me to get a professional looking smile where all my teeth are straight, the same color so I won’t be embarrassed about them any more,” Scott stated emphatically.

porcelain veneers and one all porcelain crown solve multicolored tooth problem

Photo below: Scott’s crooked multicolored teeth were a source of embarrassement to him. As a successful businessman Scott felt it was time to get straight, white teeth to enhance his image. Photo above: Dr. Huefner solved the problem of Scott having five different colors and crooked teeth by placing one new all porcelain crown and seven porcelain veneers.

Upon examining Scott’s teeth Dr. Huefner found them to be very healthy, just that like Scott said, his teeth were crooked and discolored.  Of his eight upper front teeth that he showed when he smiled, there were at least five very different colors.  Fortunately for Scott, treating his problem would be very straight forward.  Dr. Huefner recommended replacing the porcelain fused to metal crown that didn’t match any of his other teeth with an all porcelain crown that matched his other teeth and looked like a real tooth.  Also, he advised placing porcelain veneers on the seven other discolored front teeth.  By doing this when Scott smiled his teeth would all be straight, even and he would no longer have discolored teeth!

Scott thought about it for a few moments and then asked what color Dr. Huefner would change his discolored teeth to?  Dr. Huefner answered, “Whatever color you would like Scott!  We’ll recommend a few different tooth colors that we think would look good for you, but the ultimate choice on the color is yours!”

BL2 tooth shade

Scott’s smile makeover was completed in just 2 1/2 weeks. Scott chose BL2 for the tooth color for his porcelain veneers and one all porcelain crown. The end result enhanced Scott’s professional image and also gave him a younger looking and more attractive smile.

“I’d really like them to be a lot whiter as long as they don’t look fake,” Scott exclaimed.  Dr. Huefner and Scott looked at numerous tooth colors from the tooth shade guide, and Scott chose BL2 as his favorite.  “I didn’t think you would choose a color that white,” Dr. Huefner told Scott.  “Actually that color is one of our most popular colors with patients getting the same kind of treatment that you are.  I think that will work for you, certainly giving you a more professional and a little more youthful smile than colors that aren’t as white.”

Porcelain Veneer treatment completed in two and a half weeks

Scott accepted the treatment plan that Dr. Huefner recommended and started his smile makeover with porcelain veneers and one porcelain crown.  His treatment went smoothly and was completed just 2 1/2 weeks later.  Scott was elated with the end results.  Finally, after all these years, a great looking smile and no more discolored teeth!

Dr. Norman Huefner,
Orange County Cosmetic Dentist serving Irvine, Laguna Niguel, Mission Viejo and Newport Beach

Younger Looking Smile with Porcelain Bridges and Porcelain Veneers

whiter teeth

Lower photo: Thirty years ago Adrienne had two porcelain on metal bridges for her six front teeth. A yellow color was used to match to her other teeth. Upper photo: Adrienne felt her teeth were dingy and old looking and she wanted a whiter, younger looking smile. Dr. Huefner redid her old dentistry with two new all porcelain bridges using a much whiter color. He also placed four porcelain veneers on her side teeth. The end result for this amazing lady in her 70s was a much more attractive and “younger looking” smile.

Adrienne from Laguna Hills has been a patient of mine for over 30 years.  I first met her after she had an accident.  She had fallen on her face, knocking out one tooth and breaking several others.  So, we fixed Adrienne’s smile by making her two bridges for the front of her mouth.  But back then, in the 1980s, cosmetic dentistry wasn’t anything like it is today.  I did for Adrienne what most other dentists were doing at that time, I matched her bridgework to her other teeth.  Back then ideal dentistry centered around the word “natural”, and that meant any new dentistry “should” match the other adjacent teeth, regardless of how yellow, dark or discolored those other teeth were.

Adrienne wanted a younger looking smile

After several decades Adrienne’s bridges were still holding up fine, but her teeth had moved slightly, creating a slight space between the front two central incisor teeth.  That didn’t seem to bother Adrienne.  What did bother her was that she felt like her teeth were dingy yellow, making her look older.  Adrienne has a great personality and very positive attitude, always laughing, but now she was getting self conscious about smiling!  She said she was ready to redo her old dental work, but she wanted whiter teeth and a younger looking smile!  This is a very common remark that we hear from many of your patients today that we really didn’t hear to much thirty years ago.

dark dingy teeth

Adrienne loved to smile, but her dark, dingy looking teeth were making her self conscious. It was time to replace her old dentistry and get the kind of teeth that would enhance her smile and her appearance.

We discussed some of the new options I could now offer Adrienne.  An all ceramic bridge without any metal understructure would look much more natural than her other bridge.  However if we were going to make her her six front teeth whiter, then we still had to contend with her very dark side (bicuspid) teeth.  Dr. Huefner asked her if she would be willing to have him place four porcelain veneers on her side teeth? That would solve the color match problem.  If we did that, all the teeth she showed when she smiled would be white and younger looking.

all porcelain bridges and porcelain veneers

Adrienne loved the new smile that Dr. Huefner made for her with two new all porcelain bridges and four porcelain veneers. “I love to smile now,” she told Dr. Huefner.

“In a heart beat”, Adrienne answered Dr. Huefner.  “Just promise me that my smile will be more attractive and younger looking.  I don’t expect you to make me look like a young girl, because I’m certainly not, but I don’t want my smile to be an old lady’s smile anymore!”

In only six weeks Adrienne got the younger looking smile that she had always wanted

We started Adrienne’s cosmetic dentistry, replacing her old unattractive dentistry the following week.  We made her two all porcelain bridges for her front six teeth, and also four porcelain veneers for her side teeth.  Her treatment was completed in less than three weeks time and Adrienne was elated with the results because she got the younger looking smile she asked Dr. Huefner for.

Dr. Norman Huefner, Laguna Niguel cosmetic dentist serving Orange County, Laguna Hills, Mission Viejo and Irvine

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