I have had my porcelain years for a little over one year. I’ve noticed the areas around my veneers are stained. I will admit that I am a smoker, but my dentist told me that porcelain veneers are very stain-resistant. Do you think my veneers are defective? I’m still paying for them and wondered if I should stop until these are fixed.
I wish that I had an image of your porcelain veneers because it could be one of two things. What I can do is give you some possibilities. This first one I do not actually think is your issue. I’m just bringing it up in case someone else is experiencing this. If your stains were over the entire surface of the teeth, the first thing I would check is whether or not your dental hygienist used something like a power prophy jet during your last cleaning. This will take the entire protective glaze, that makes them so stain-resistant, off the veneers. It will not take long for them to begin to turn darker.
You said your stains are only around the sides of your porcelain veneers, which tells me the above is not your problem. Instead, it can be one of two things. One is if there is a gap between your porcelain veneers and your teeth. This would be a tricky fix and may require doing the veneers over. A second option is that some of the composite bonding around the edges is what is picking up the stains. This area was likely polished when you first got your veneers but has slowly picked up some staining again. Especially as a smoker, I would consider polishing the edges where some composite lay as regular maintenance.
Don’t expect your average family dentist to know how to polish that bonding. You will need to go to an expert cosmetic dentist who has the materials and knowledge necessary to do this procedure. They will need to use ultra-fine polishing strips in this area and a special ultra-fine aluminum oxide polishing paste. The good news is by doing this you keep the area not only smooth and stain resistant, but keep plaque from accumulating in the area. This gives your porcelain veneers the longest life span possible. This isn’t expensive and will be a great investment in your smile makeover.
This blog is brought to you by La Jolla Dentist Dr. Stephen Doan.