I told my dentist that I was embarrassed by my smile. You can never see my upper teeth. It’s even difficult to see them when I smile. I also have trouble talking in cold weather. He said I have a collapsed bite and that he just got certified in Lumineers and could fix my smile. I was wondering if I should be concerned about the bite as well as the appearance? What do you think? A “second opinion” never hurts, right?
I am so glad you wrote for a second opinion. Do not go further with this treatment! Your dentist means well but doesn’t know what he’s talking about in this case. An open bite is very complicated and usually requires a full-mouth reconstruction with dental crowns. Even then, it has to be done by a dentist with significant TMJ Disorder Training.
I sincerely doubt your dentist has this based on his treatment suggestion. Also, so you know, getting certified to place Lumineers does not make someone an expert cosmetic dentist. They’re marketed to inexperienced cosmetic dentists and only have to participate in a short seminar to become certified.
Treating Severe TMJ with a Full-Mouth Reconstruction
The first huge issue is finding the right TMJ dentist. You need a dentist with advanced training. Look for someone who’s completed training at one of the following:
- L.D. Pankey Institute in Florida
- The Dawson Academy in Florida
- The Las Vegas Institute for Advanced Dental Studies in Nevada
There are some others, but these are very reputable and give superb training in restorative dentistry. There are too many horror stories of patients whose bites have been completely destroyed by dentists without the right training.
Next, make sure they do a provisional reconstruction first. When that’s perfect, then they can copy what they did for a provisional. By perfect, I mean that you love the appearance, your speech comes easily and naturally, and you can see your upper teeth as you would with a normal bite.
This blog is brought to you by Dr. Theodore Hadgis.