August 19, 2018

Q. Can my two front teeth made bigger with bonding or do I have to get veneers to lengthen them?

I have bonding on my two front teeth, they look dull and darker. I’m happy with the rest of my teeth, except for the two front ones because of the color change and the teeth are also shorter now because I clinch my jaws sometimes. What’s my best option? Should I get veneers or should I redo the bonding on there? Since I would like the two front teeth to be a little longer, can the two teeth be extended to look longer with bonding? How frequently would I redo bonding? I want a natural look.
Dr. Huefner’s answer:
You mention that your teeth have gotten shorter from clenching.  In general, teeth don’t get shorter from clenching, but rather from grinding, which mostly occurs at night.
Your teeth can be made longer with either approach, however porcelain veneers are much stronger when it comes to lengthening teeth, and as such, should last you many times over what direct composite bonding will do, especially if you are “grinder.”
Also, the shape of the teeth tend to be much better with veneers than bonding, and likewise the color of the teeth is much better and more stable over time.
Thus, I would advise porcelain veneers over direct composite bonding.
You might be interested in seeing some examples of patients who have had their teeth lengthened with porcelain veneers.  See the web reference below.
Web reference:

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.

Worn old looking smile rejuvenated with porcelain veneers by DrHuefner

younger looking smile with porcelain veneers

Photo below: Roselyn’s teeth were very worn. She is only forty, but her teeth looked twice that age. Also, she wanted whiter teeth and for her teeth to be straight, with no gaps inbetween them.
Photo above: Dr. Huefner made ten porcelain veneers for Roselyn. He made her veneers longer than her worn teeth were, about the length they were when she was a teenager. Roselyn chose the color she wanted for her new teeth, a BL1 tooth shade, which is one of the whitest natural looking shades available for porcelain veneers and crowns. Also, Dr. Huefner made her teeth straight with the porcelain veneers. She was very happy to loose the crooked, old looking smile and loved the more attractive and youthful looking smile that Dr. Huefner made for her.

Roselyn, a very active and young-at-heart lady who just turned forty was feeling that her appearance was getting away from her.  “When I smile my teeth are so short and worn that I feel it makes me look really old,” she told Dr. Huefner.  Upon looking at Roselyn’s teeth it was quite obvious what she was referring to.  Her teeth were quite worn, something we might normally expect from someone twice her age.

“I see exactly what you are telling me,” Dr. Huefner told her.  “Yes, your teeth are extremely worn.  You know, if you keep this up you are going to wear your teeth down to little stubs.”  Dr. Huefner went on to ask Roselyn if there were any other things that concerned her?

“Well, the color of my teeth are really dark and discolored.  I’ve always wanted clean, white teeth.  Is that something that you can fix for me?” She asked Dr. Huefner.

Dr. Huefner answered Roselyn that before he started recommending any treatment he needed to know if there was anything else with her teeth that she wanted him to address?  Roselyn said, “One more thing.  My teeth are crooked and spaced.  I feel like maybe the best way for me to go is just pull ’em all out and give me dentures.”

Roselyn’s last statement really shocked Dr. Huefner!  “No Roselyn, we certainly don’t have to do that.  We can fix the three things that concern you with porcelain veneers, a very common cosmetic dental treatment that we do today.  It will make your teeth longer, and I can make them the same length they were for you when you were a teenager.  Also, we can make your veneers white and in fact, you can choose the color we make your teeth.  And lastly, we can make your teeth straight and even, as if your had braces. But we can do all this in just under a month’s time,” Dr. Huefner told Roselyn.

She was amazed.  She couldn’t believe that she could go from an old looking smile to a beautiful, younger looking smile with porcelain veneers and that her entire treatment could be done so quickly.  After discussing some other options and Dr. Huefner answering some more questions about porcelain veneers and cosmetic dentistry, Roselyn agreed to Dr. Huefner’s treatment recommendations.  And as Dr. Huefner had promised, Roselyn had her new, younger looking smile with porcelain veneers in less than a month’s time.

After her treatment was completed Dr. Huefner asked Roselyn how she felt about her new smile?  “I just love my new teeth, the veneers make me look so much younger than I looked before,” she told Dr. Huefner.

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

Orange County Porcelain Crowns by Dr. Huefner

Photo below: Elise had short, worn, chipped front teeth and wanted a nicer looking smile. Clearly, she didn't want "old looking teeth." Photo above: Elise had Dr. Huefner place four Orange County porcelain crowns on her front four teeth.

Elise is a very attractive lady in her late 60s and she always has taken great care of herself.  She exercises, dresses well, watches her diet, stays very active, does most things that we all know keeps us healthy, looking younger and our best.  But one thing slipped by over the years, her teeth chipped and wore down to the point that they were not only showing her age but her teeth actually made her look older than she was.  One day Elise saw her teeth up close in a photo and she was devastated!  It was time to see Irvine cosmetic dentist Dr. Huefner to “get her teeth and smile into shape!”

Elise knew that her short, worn teeth made her look older. It was time for her to finally do something about it.

When Dr. Huefner saw Elise smile it was pretty obvious that her teeth had chipped off and worn so much that the best thing he could do for her would be to restore her four front teeth to the shape and length that they originally were years before.  Dr. Huefner explained to Elise that the length of normal front teeth (central incisors) are between 10.5mm and 11.5mm and they are more or less rectangular in shape with slightly rounded corners.  In Elise’s case her central incisors had worn down to 9.0mm and that made her teeth look short and square, giving her teeth a much older appearance than the rest of her.

After discussing the length and shape of her teeth, Elise appreciated how Dr. Huefner would lengthen and reshape her four front teeth by placing four Orange County porcelain crowns.  Oftentimes Dr. Huefner prefers to do porcelain veneers rather than porcelain crowns, but in Elise’s case not only were the edges of her teeth really worn down, but also the backs of the teeth.  This meant that porcelain crowns would be a better treatment for her than porcelain veneers.

After Dr. Huefner placed four Orange County porcelain crowns Elise had a much more attractive smile. Dr. Huefner lengthened her four front teeth to the size they originally were when she was years younger. He also changed the shape of the teeth, giving them rounded corners which impart a younger more feminine appearance to them. Since Elise only wanted Dr. Huefner to put crowns on the front four teeth he matched the color of her other teeth. If she had wanted whiter teeth than Dr. Huefner would have need to treat at least eight teeth.

Then Dr. Huefner had an important question that Elise needed to be address, did she want whiter teeth, which would mean putting Orange County porcelain crowns on at least eight of her upper teeth, or did she just want Dr. Huefner to just do four Orange County porcelain crowns and match them to the color of her other teeth.  Elise said that her goal was not to try look decades younger, just “a little younger” with a more attractive smile, and that she was really “OK” with the color of her other teeth.  After a little more discussion Elise made her final decision to just do four new porcelain crowns.

After having a good understanding of the procedure and feeling comfortable with Dr. Huefner’s recommendation to do four Orange County porcelain crowns, Elise had Dr. Huefner begin her cosmetic dental treatment.  The first visit he prepared the four teeth, took dental impressions, measured the shade of Elise’s other teeth and placed four temporary crowns.  Two weeks later she returned to get her Orange County porcelain crowns.  Dr. Huefner gently removed her temporary crowns, allowing Elise to preview how they would look and give her consent, and then Dr. Huefner permanently bonded the four porcelain crowns into place with the dental curing laser.

Elise got a great result with her four Orange County porcelain crowns!  It really improved her smile and accomplished her goals of a better looking smile and younger appearing front teeth.

Dr. Norman Huefner, Laguna Niguel and Irvine cosmetic dentist, Orange County, CA


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.

Anaheim Businesswoman’s Deformed Teeth Transformed into a Stunning Smile with Porcelain Veneers

Anaheim businesswoman wants smile makeover with cosmetic dentistry

disfigured teeth before cosmetic dentistry Anaheim

Susie was very self conscious about her smile, especially in front of her customers and grandchildren. Her whole life she had always wanted a "perfect smile" with white teeth!

Susie has a family owned business in Anaheim, CA, and is the main person involved in dealing with their customers on a person to person basis.  Unfortunately, over the years her teeth showed the signs of wear and age, and Susie became increasingly uncomfortable with their appearance.  Finally, one of her grandchildren made a comment that really made her self conscious, “Grandma, why are your teeth so ugly?”

At her first consultation Susie expressed her concerns.  “At our business I’m in front of our customers all the time.  I know my teeth are a wreck and it’s time for me to do something about it.  All my life I have wanted nice white teeth, so how can you do that for me?”

In Susie’s case her teeth were very healthy, but her two front teeth were very unsightly and she had numerous old fillings at her gum line that had deteriorated.  We explained to her that there were three basic approaches.  One is to take a “minimalist” approach, replace all her gum line fillings and place two porcelain veneers on her two front teeth.  The second approach would be to do porcelain veneers on her upper teeth, bleach her lower teeth, and then replace the gum line fillings on her lower teeth.  The third approach would be to place porcelain veneers on both her upper and lower teeth.

“Which of the three will look the very best?”, Susie asked. “If I’m going to finally do this I want my teeth to look the very best that you can do for me.”

After explaining the difference between the three options Susie chose to do porcelain veneers on her upper and lower teeth. That would enable her to get the perfect looking white teeth that she had always wanted.

Temporary veneers help choose the best size, length, shape and color

temporary veneers for Anaheim businesswoman

The first step in Susie's smile makeover was to place temporary veneers, also called the "trial smile". This is important to help determine the best size, length, shape and color teeth. Susie like the color of her "trial smile", but wanted her porcelain veneers to be a little whiter.

We started out by placing temporary veneers on Susie’s upper teeth, which we call the “trial smile” stage.  This is part of the process is extremely important to help us determine the best size, length and shape of porcelain veneer teeth along with giving her an opportunity to test out the color.  The temporary veneer color we used was a BL3.5.  She really liked the color compared to her dark, discolored teeth, but asked if we could make her final porcelain veneers even lighter.  “Of course,” we told Susie.  “You choose the color teeth you want from our tooth shade guide.”

After careful consideration, Susie chose a BL2 tooth shade, and approved the size, length and shape of the temporary veneers. Then our ceramist fabricated Susie’s final veneers using IPS Empress porcelain.

porcelain veneers Anaheim

Cosmetic dentistry and porcelain veneers enabled Susie to get the beautiful white teeth she had always wanted. Many of her Anaheim customers have commented on how beautiful her smile is!

New Improved Smile with Porcelain Veneers

Susie’s final smile makeover with porcelain veneers came out beautiful and when she smiled it was an amazing!  “I feel so fresh and clean now when I smile,” Susie said.

One thing that we didn’t point out is that before we started her treatment Susie’s right front tooth stuck out much more than her left one, which resulted in the gum levels around the two front teeth being slightly different.  When Susie smiled her lips didn’t raise up enough to show that, so it wasn’t something that we needed to fix.  However, some patients have a upper lip that raises up when they smile, and if they had the same problem as Susie had they might require an additional dental procedure to make the gums even for the front two teeth.

Anaheim cosmetic dentistry and porcelain veneers

Can you tell which is the before and after photos? OK, that's obviously not a serious question. But Susie getting a smile makeover was obviously a serious decision that she never regretted!

At Susie’s business in Anaheim she told us that now she gets compliments all the time on what a beautiful, friendly smile she has.  And most importantly, Susie said she is happy that her porcelain veneer treatment keeps her from ever being embarrassed about her teeth around her grandchildren!

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

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

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
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