My teeth where they meet my gums are quite eroded and abraded. My old dentist always said this was from brushing my teeth too roughly, but he retired and I had to find a new dentist, and she says is probably caused by bruxism. I am not really comfortable with this new dentist and did not want to admit that I don’t know what that is.
I’d like to do something about my teeth, but I have a lot of questions first. If I get porcelain veneers, will they look ugly along the gumline, or be more prone to decay?
Do porcelain veneers stain, and if so, typically how long does that take, assuming excellent oral hygeine?
Finally, do you have to change what you eat and drink to try and avoid staining the veneers?
Thanks for your help,
Lupe in Oregon
Before we address your questions about porcelain veneers, we’ll talk about what caused the erosion and abrasions in the first place. Bruxism is biting stress, and the wear/erosion pattern you describe is typically found when someone clenches and/or grinds their teeth. The constant stress on the teeth causes them to flex right where the tooth meets the gum (the “neck” of the tooth), and you wind up with eroded notches there, just as you describe.
So first, you need to seek a cosmetic dentist who also has experience in TMJ treatment. This more than anything will maximize the lifespan of porcelain veneers, which do not respond to grinding or clenching any better than natural teeth do.
When your dentist has addressed any bite issues, he or she can discuss placing porcelain veneers with you. If they are done properly, they will completely cover the notches at your gumline. There is no need to restrict your diet, as the veneers are actually more stain resistant than your natural teeth. It is still best, though to avoid frequent snacking, as that eating pattern often leads to decay.
This blog posted courtesy of Grosse Pointe Woods cosmetic dentist Dr. Hadgis.