Congratulations! You’ve decided to invest in yourself by improving your smile. We think it’s a great decision that’s likely to boost your confidence and help you feel great.
Dr. Stephen Hiroshige and his staff are always pleased when patients decide they want to take the time and make the effort to feel better about their teeth. We often get questions about the best approach to making that improvement, and the answer is that it really depends on your goal and what kinds of dental issues you’re trying to correct. You may be able to correct uneven or misaligned teeth with veneers, or you may need Invisalign® aligners.
First things first
Before we talk about the kinds of issues that can be corrected with veneers, you should know that your teeth need to be in good shape. If you have gum health problems, cavities, or an infection, we need to address those problems first.
Veneers are a versatile and useful cosmetic procedure, but your oral health is of greater importance. Before discussing the cosmetic choices you have, we will want to make sure your teeth and gums are healthy.
Misalignment: a closer look
If your teeth are crooked, crowded, or have gaps, you have malocclusion. It can be caused by overcrowding in your mouth, use of a pacifier in infancy, oddly shaped teeth, and by fillings, braces, or crowns that don’t fit properly.
There are three classes of malocclusion with class 1 being the most common and least severe. If you have class 1 malocclusion, your bite is normal, and your teeth are slightly misaligned.
Classes 2 and 3 malocclusion are more severe. Class 2 involves having a severe overbite, and class 3 involves a severe underbite.
When veneers are the right choice
Veneers are small shells that can be customized to match your other teeth or to make your teeth look just the way you want. They are permanently attached to your natural teeth and can be used to hide chips, discoloration, and even misalignment.
In cases of class 1 malocclusion, veneers may be the right choice, especially if you have another issue you want to correct. For example, if your teeth are discolored and slightly misaligned, but otherwise healthy with no decay or gum disease, veneers may be the perfect choice.
If your teeth are more severely misaligned, you may need to consider Invisalign aligners first. Prior to placing veneers, Dr. Hiroshige first prepares your teeth, which involves removing some of your enamel to make room for the veneers. The more crooked your teeth, the more he may need to file away.
Before making a decision, it’s important to understand your options. A blog post such as this one can give you general information, but it’s only a starting point. You need advice about your specific situation.
Your teeth are as unique as you are, and Dr. Hiroshige can give you guidance that’s specific to you, your goals, and your one-of-a-kind smile. If you’re ready to get the smile of your dreams, schedule an appointment today to learn more about your options.