I need some advice. Most of my life my smile has embarrassed me. I wanted to do something about it, but nothing too drastic. My two front teeth overlap and the two teeth beside them are set back from the rest. My dentist suggested cosmetic bonding. He shaved down the overlapping teeth to make them “flat”, then built up the two teeth which were back a bit. Where he ground down the teeth is both painful and sharp. The teeth he “built up” look unnatural and he stained them yellow to “match” even though I told him I wanted a really white smile. My dentist feels I’m being unreasonable and I don’t know what to do. I wanted a prettier smile, but this feels like a lateral move with increased pain. Can this be fixed? What went wrong? Was I given the wrong procedure?
Dental bonding wasn’t necessarily the wrong procedure. There are other options, but with the right cosmetic dentist it would have worked. I think the biggest problem you faced with this cosmetic dental work, is your dentist was in over his head. Your case was a complicated one to do whether with dental bonding or something else.
Most cosmetic dentistry isn’t taught in dental school. Plus, it isn’t a recognized specialty, so any general dentist can call themselves a cosmetic dentist. Some dentists invest time in learning it and others just dabble. Though I’d say only the top 2% of cosmetic dentists could have done this beautifully, your dentist is definitely a dabbler and not a serious cosmetic dentist.
In general dental school we’re taught that the dentist is the authority. However, when it comes to cosmetic work it is what the patient wants that counts. You wanting a white smile isn’t a technical issue. It’s what you paid for. He shouldn’t have stained the teeth to match. If he was worried the adjacent teeth wouldn’t look right next to white teeth, he could have suggested you get your teeth whitened and then he can add the bonding.
Another issue is him saying you are unreasonable. That’s not the case. You don’t have the smile you want. Plus, it sounds like some of the grinding wasn’t completed properly or you wouldn’t be in pain.
Getting Bad Cosmetic Dental Work Fixed
I’m going to suggest you go to the website of The American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (aacd.com). There they have a link to help you find a cosmetic dentist in your area. When you do your search, I want you to check that you are looking for an accredited cosmetic dentist. That part is important. These are the top cosmetic dentists in the country. They have the skill to give you a gorgeous smile.
If your dentist botched the case as badly as it sounds, you should have no problem getting the accredited dentist to help you get a refund from your current dentist. This way you can start fresh and get a smile you’ll be proud to share with the world.
Best of luck.
This blog is brought to you by La Jolla Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Stephen Doan.