Q: I see that most dental offices claim they do porcelain veneers, but how is that possible when I see that many of the offices also treat children, do implants and all other types of dental work? How do I know who is a true specialist in veneers? I am looking for a complete smile makeover.
A: For those that have been reading my column for the last eighteen years and for those that have been using it for spray paint DIY projects at home and puppy training, you know I have made this reference before: “An educated consumer is our best customer.” This comes from an old TV commercial from the late 70’s and early 80’ for Syms Department Stores. The quote was said on-camera by the owner, Sy Syms.
As you research cosmetic dentistry and porcelain veneer treatment, your head will spin out of control in misleading information and confusion.
Cosmetic dentistry is not a recognized specialty in dentistry; there is no board certification. Some examples of recognized specialties in dentistry are orthodontists (braces), endodontists (root canals), and pedodontists (children). These require extra years of full time schooling.
Most cosmetic and implants techniques are taught to general dentists at continuing education courses doctors enroll in after graduating dental school.
Cosmetic dentistry is, however, an “emphasis” of practice. If you are interested in porcelain veneers for a new smile, seek out an office that dose A LOT of cases. If you see our website you will get a feeling that our practice “emphasis” is on veneers, complex crown/bridge work and implants. (Implants, by the way, is also not a recognized board certified specialty; all general dentists that are trained in the techniques are allowed to perform them.)
Visit the offices in person for a veneer consultation. Check the gallery of photos of actual cases on their websites. Ask to speak to patients who have had veneers done in that office. We have many patients who have kindly given us permission for this. We have even gone as far as allowing prospective patients to meet in person our awesome veneer patients on site in our conference/lecture suite.
Many of our veneer patients have come to us after seeing our Power Point slide presentations at our FREE community lectures to the public. You are welcome to view these cases in our office should you book a consultation.
Check out the technology of the office. Are they using digital impression scanners such as iTero or are they still using the goopy molds? What lab are they using? What brand porcelain are they using? How are they making your temporary veneers that you will be wearing for three weeks? What is being done to make your veneers look natural and not like Chicklets?
Become educated, but not only via the internet. You need to visit some practices in person.