Are you tired of seeing those dark or yellowish stains when you smile in the mirror? Do those stains undermine your self-confidence? Don’t you dream about having a brighter smile? If the answer to any of those questions is “yes,” continue reading to find out how our experts at Elite Prosthetic Dentistry can help you achieve a “simply radiant, simply natural” smile.
What Causes Teeth Discoloration?
Before discussing the different treatment alternatives, we need to understand what causes the stains and why some of them can be removed with whitening treatments and others cannot. Staining can be produced by external or internal factors:
- External stains: These stains are typically caused by certain foods and beverages (wine, tea, coffee, etc.) or habits like smoking. They are usually easier to deal with, and, if they are not too deep, they can be removed with a cleaning and a posterior bleaching treatment. However, if the staining is too deep or has been there for a while, or if the patient wants more permanent results (the whitening effect fades away over time), our prosthodontist, Gerald Marlin, would recommend another solution: porcelain veneers or dental crowns.
- Internal stains: Internal stains are caused by various factors, including medical treatments, dental trauma, quality of water, and many more. Our team would suggest a course of treatment depending on the cause of the internal staining. Still, whitening treatments are not indicated in most cases as they are not sufficiently effective against these stains. Again, dental crowns and veneers are the top choices to get rid of the internal staining for good.
Dental Crowns vs. Porcelain Veneers. Which are Best for Me?
As you can see, Dr. Marlin and our team recommend more comprehensive restorative treatments like dental crowns or porcelain veneers to deal with staining in many cases. The choice between these two treatment alternatives will depend on your smile’s condition, along with your particular situation and expectations.
As a general rule, when the cosmetic defect is minor to moderate, our first choice is dental veneers. Veneers are thin shells that cover the front surface of the teeth. They are usually bonded to the six front teeth, and apart from stains, these restorations can mask other cosmetic issues like chips, minor fractures, gaps, and minor teeth misalignment. This option is considered a conservative solution to teeth staining as it requires minimal enamel reduction, preserving much of the tooth structure.
However, veneers are not indicated when the stains are too deep or if the teeth’s structure has been severely compromised with deep fillings (sometimes stains are caused by problems in the enamel composition like mineral deficiency). In these cases, dental crowns might be the right choice. Crowns require more enamel reduction, so more dental tissue is lost during this procedure, but as they cover the whole tooth (not just the front like veneers), they strengthen its structure, while veneers do not provide strength. At Elite Prosthetic Dentistry, we custom fabricate dental crowns in our own state-of-the-art in-house laboratory. Due to this resource, we can produce artfully crafted crowns that last over 35 years, which is over three times the national average.
Our Approach to Teeth Stains is Very Effective
If you want to get rid of those troubling stains once and for all, schedule a consultation with Dr. Marlin and see how you can benefit from any of these treatments. Renowned for his masterful skill and problem-solving abilities, Dr. Marlin is a leading specialist in dental implants, cosmetic, and restorative dentistry in the Chevy Chase, Bethesda, and Washington DC Metro Areas. Dr. Marlin and our team look forward to meeting you soon!