"Minimal preparation dental veneers" - Limiting tooth reduction - Less drilling
This Highland Park patient complained of an uneven gummy smile and unattractive teeth with diastemas (spaces between the teeth) and old chipped composite bonding. Large amounts of composite filling material had previously been used to artifically reshape her teeth. The bonding had always made her teeth feel thick and it continued to chip. This lady wanted to replace the old plastic filling material but did not want any of her natural tooth enamel to be removed. Dr. Fondriest removed all of the old artificial material and covered her front six teeth with Empress porcelain restorations.
Preserving tooth structure with less tooth preparation or drilling
The patient had a special gum surgery to raise the gums up to the lower border of the upper lip (this procedure is called a gum lift, crown lengthening, or perioplastic surgery) and to make the scallop symmetry even. Then "Empress porcelain veneers" were done by only removing the old bonding material. Only a very modest amount of tooth preparation was done to remove some dark stains on the natural teeth. Patients appreciate it when the dentist saves as much of the tooth structure as possible. The process of making veneers with very little or no tooth preparation is called doing "Prepless Veneers".
Why is less drilling attractive?
Traditionally, veneers required substantial alteration of the natural teeth. Now, there are no-prep or minimal-prep alternatives. When placing custom restorations at Lake Forest Dental Arts, there are several reasons why Dr. James Fondriest limits tooth reduction. For example, with less drilling:
- Appointments can be shorter
- Local anesthesia is often not required
- Temporary veneers, which are incredibly time consuming, may not be necessary
- Necessary impressions are less invasive
- More natural tooth structure can be preserved
- The bond between the natural tooth and restoration is stronger
No-prep or Prep-less Veneers Require Exceptional Skill
There are only a handful of cases in which optimal results can be achieved with absolutely no preparation. True, there are certain marketing ads which may suggest otherwise; but remember that overall quality is measured by aesthetics, cleansability, and longevity. To achieve overall success, some modest and subtle reduction is usually necessary. While it is easier and faster for the dentist to make crowns and veneers with heavy reduction, great care is necessary when placing no-prep or prep-less restorations. It is common for a poorly trained practitioner to leave large “over-hangs” (porcelain that does not have a good fit) while attempting to provide full coverage of visible parts. These overhangs lead to difficult or impossible cleaning. If you cannot clean the teeth properly, recurrent decay, stains, or gum problems will inevitably develop.
Contact Lake Forest Dental Arts
If you would like to learn more about dental veneers at our Chicago, IL practice, schedule a consultation with Dr. Fondriest by calling 847-234-0517. Taking your unique, personal goals into account, we can help you achieve the bright, dazzling smile you’ve always wanted.