I lost my two front teeth in an accident when I was a teenager and, for the past ten years, I’ve been wearing a flipper. Lately, I’ve been shopping around for some affordable dental implants, and I came across someone who comes highly-regarded for his cosmetic work, even though his rates are supposedly cheaper. During the consult, he told me that we could go ahead and do the implants to replace my missing teeth, but he wants me to get two veneers placed on each side of them, so I’d have work done on a total of six teeth. He says this is important if I want everything to match well. Now, I know my flipper isn’t perfect, but it matches ok and my prior dentist never said anything about needing veneers later. He just suggested I get the implants done when I was an adult. To be blunt, there was a reason I was shopping for affordable dental implants. I’m not made of money and the veneers aren’t cheap. If I need them, I guess I need them, but it seems odd to me that my prior dentist never mentioned this. Is this standard in cases like mine?
Xavier W. – Kansas
I’m glad you wrote before following through on this treatment. No, this isn’t a normal course of treatment. Unless there’s something cosmetically wrong with the other teeth that you want to correct, there’s no need to have anything done to them.
Even if there was something wrong with your other teeth, I’d suggest you go to a different dentist to have your porcelain veneers done. This dentist may give you affordable dental implants, but he can not give you a gorgeous smile. If he can’t make the implants look nice next to your natural teeth, he is not a very good cosmetic dentist.
It takes a high degree of skill, as well as knowledge of materials and shading, to make everything come together right. The fact that he insists this is the only way he can make it work for you suggests that he’s either not skilled with cosmetic work or that he’s trying to increase your bill. Neither scenario gives me any confidence in him.
You can find affordable implants without doctors inflating their prices AND get quality work, but focus on quality first. If need be, you may be able to break the costs up or finance them. Implants are generally done and paid for in stages anyway, which makes budgeting for them easier. Get a second (and maybe a third) opinion before you begin any work and skip the veneers unless it’s something you want for cosmetic reasons.
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