A beautiful smile is critical for your overall appearance. Additionally, it can do much for your self-confidence as well. However, the truth is, virtually, nobody has a naturally perfect smile. Most people need a given degree of assistance in correcting defects and flaws that make their smiles appear less attractive. And when it comes to rectifying smile problems, lumineers are among the most flexible options for a beautiful smile.

If you need to correct your smile, you ought to see a dentist who will determine whether lumineers are the ideal option for you. If you are in Downey, CA, we invite you to visit us at The Downey Dentist for fast and efficient services. We offer a variety of cosmetic dentistry options, lumineers included. We will first evaluate your case and carry out examinations to see whether you are the right candidate for our procedures. In this article, we discuss what lumineers are, what they are used for, the treatment procedure, and the treatment cost.

What Are Lumineers?

Lumineers are a brand of dental veneers. They’re sturdy, thin shells, as thin as contact lenses, which are usually bonded to the teeth to cover stains, chips, unsightly gums, and gaps. Dental lumineers do not require a lot of preparation. This is one reason why they’re a popular option for cosmetic dentistry. This no-preparation or minimal preparation element is favorable to both dentists and patients. Additionally, lumineers are durable and have effective results in almost all dental cases.

If you’re unsatisfied with your general smile appearance and you’re planning slight amendments or otherwise a whiter color like Hollywood white, dental lumineers are an ideal option to help you achieve the results you’re expecting. You may be wondering how thin porcelain shells can withstand all the wear & tear that they will be exposed to successfully. Even though dental lumineers are extraordinarily thin, when they’re firmly attached to and supported by the teeth, they create a durable and sturdy surface. Given the modern dentistry, dental lumineers are capable of providing you with an instant Hollywood or natural smile in a few steps.

When Are Lumineers Recommended?

Whether you have discolored, moderately crooked, or chipped teeth, lumineers are likely the best option for you. Only a qualified dentist experienced in lumineers treatment can determine if you’re the right candidate to go for them. Dental lumineers can be used to:

Brighten Discolored and Stained Teeth Permanently

Discoloration and staining are common dental issues. Teeth whitening is one known option you can go for when you have these problems, but it might not last for long or get rid of the entire stains. Lumineers give a lifelong white smile, regardless of what you drink or eat. Whether the teeth stains are as a result of time, drinking red wine or coffee, or it’s tetracycline staining, dental lumineers can change your irritating smile to a permanently natural and bright look.

Eliminate Gaps and Spacing

If you have a gap between your front teeth or any other spacing issue that you wish you did not have, dental lumineers are a non-invasive and quick procedure to eliminate gaps or spaces between teeth. In only three brief visits to the dentist, the lumineers will get rid of excessive space, and at the same time, keep your natural teeth intact.

Restore Chipped Teeth

If you have a chip on any of your teeth, be it in your front teeth where everybody can see or at the back, lumineers provide a pleasant and painless way of fixing your chipped teeth permanently.

Reshape Misshapen or Small Teeth

Misshapen teeth may, in the real sense, take away your beautiful smile. You have probably hesitated to undergo a traditional procedure to install veneers due to the fear that your teeth will be ground down. This cannot happen with lumineers. Dental lumineers are merely put over your natural teeth. In many cases, the placement doesn’t require the extraction of any sensitive structure of the tooth.

Align Crooked Teeth

Dental lumineers give a fast, painless alternative to braces, which provides an ideal aligned look and a perfect smile. Even though braces are readily in the market for adults, many people don’t want to experience the embarrassment or the pain & suffering that comes with installing them. With lumineers, one can have an entirely perfected smile in only two brief visits to the dentist. Lumineers are the best alternative to orthodontics.

Perfect One’s Hollywood Smile

A person’s smile might look quite good, but they want it to be excellent. In this case, a qualified dentist can evaluate the smile and assist the patient in achieving the appearance they want in only two short and painless visits.

Renew Outdated Dental Work

Regardless of your age, old bridgework and crowns add several years to your face. Dental lumineers can be put on top of bridgework and crowns in easy steps to achieve a perfect smile painlessly.

How Lumineers Work

It takes two to three simple visits to a dentist to achieve a beautiful smile using lumineers. Here is how the procedure goes:

First Visit

After you have had an initial consultation, your qualified lumineers dentist takes an impression of your lower and upper teeth and sends the mold to a certified lumineers lab together with pictures and other information that presents the ideal situation in which you are. Unlike traditional veneers, there’s generally no requirement for substantial drilling, unsightly or short acrylic temporaries.

Second Visit

The dentist permanently installs the dental lumineers during the third visit. Before the lumineers are fixed in position, it’s crucial first to try them on to make sure they fit correctly. Then, teeth are moderately carved to prepare them for placement, then fixed one by one. After this, the dentist will check how your bite is. This is to ensure that your contacts are well-balanced to prevent chipping your dental lumineers during your daily function.

That is all there is. In only two comfortable and straightforward visits to your dentist, you will have the perfect, beautiful, and naturally-looking smile that you have always wanted. You don’t have to go about your duties, feeling ashamed of how your teeth are. Speak with your dentist concerning getting lumineers as soon as possible and find out the options you have.

The Differences Between Dental Lumineers and Dental Veneers

A dental veneer refers to a porcelain cover, which gets fixed to the front surface of a tooth. Today, veneers are created using durable porcelain, which can be shaped and tinted to match the patient’s smile and teeth so that the end-results are flawless. For dental veneers, a patient has two main options to choose from: lumineers and traditional porcelain veneers. Lumineers are an innovative alteration on dental veneers, which provide several significant benefits for many patients. Here is the difference between dental lumineers and dental veneers and how you can tell what option is ideal for you.

How Dental Lumineers and Porcelain Veneers Compare

Both lumineers and porcelain veneers can be used for correcting the appearance of:

  • Gaps and any other spacing problems between teeth
  • Crooked teeth
  • Teeth that appear too small
  • Deeply stained teeth (this includes stains that cannot be bleached away or whitened)
  • Teeth that have worn or uneven edges
  • Cracked or chipped teeth

Both lumineers and porcelain veneers are made in dental laboratories that specialize in modern restorations. Additionally, the placement procedure for both of these can be performed in only two visits. Once they are in place, you will take care of both in the same manner, with routine brushing & flossing and regular visits to the office to ensure your restorations remain in excellent shape.

How Lumineers and Porcelain Veneers Differ

Even though both lumineers and veneers are used in treating the same problems, there are a few significant differences to note. First, though porcelain veneers are thin, dental lumineers are thinner (i.e., .2mm). Dental lumineers are approximately half as wide as veneers, which are about .5 mm. This might not seem like a lot, but it does make a significant difference when applying them.

Since veneers are wider, your dentist will have to remove a little of your original tooth material so he/she can create more space for the porcelain veneer. He/she does this so that the veneer surface is on the same level as the surfaces of your adjacent teeth. Once the tooth material has been removed, it will be gone permanently. This means you will always have to cover that tooth (using either a composite or veneer covering). In simple words, veneers aren’t reversible.

On the other hand, since dental lumineers are a lot thinner, your dentist does not need to extract tooth material to bound the lumineers to the teeth. This means that if you decide that you do not want them anymore and want to have them removed, it is possible. You can have the lumineers extracted and remain with your original teeth or try a different treatment option that you may want in the future. Because there’s no removal of tooth material, dental lumineers can be reversed.

Since dental lumineers are thinner, most patients upon using it find that they look and feel more natural. This is because the unique thin ceramic that’s used to make dental lumineers is more translucent compared to the porcelain that makes regular veneers. Thus, the ceramic usually reflects light like your original teeth.

The extra thinness of lumineers also has another benefit. Because your dentist does not have to extract any tooth material, you will not need anesthesia in the course of fitting them. When it comes to porcelain veneers, your dentist will generally numb your tooth before extracting tooth material so he/she can prevent sensitivity and discomfort that may arise. While waiting for your porcelain veneer to be created, you will need to put on a composite covering that has the same color with your teeth to safeguard your tooth.

Just because dental lumineers are thinner does not mean they aren’t durable. The truth is the material that’s used to make lumineers is sturdy. Your lumineers can last up to twenty years. That is approximately two times longer compared to traditional porcelain veneers, which will likely have to be replaced after approximately ten years or so. In matters of cost, a dental lumineer is highly expensive compared to a traditional porcelain veneer. However, in recent times, lumineers have dropped in price. Therefore, the cost difference between these two is not that significant.

Both porcelain veneers and lumineers can be effective when it comes to correcting several cosmetic problems. Consequently, both could help you to enjoy an enhanced, beautiful smile and elevated confidence as well.

The Cost of Dental Lumineers

Averagely, the cost of lumineers can range between $800 and $2,000 per tooth based on individual needs and cases. Factors that influence the treatment cost include the difficulty of the case, geography, size, etc. Only a certified dentist can determine the true cost of your case, depending on your specific needs.

In many cases, dental insurance doesn’t cover elective cosmetic dentistry treatment like lumineers. Consult your insurance company to find out if you have coverage for lumineers.

The cost of dental lumineers or any other procedure for smile enhancement shouldn’t prevent you from getting the smile you have always wished. Achieving that beautiful smile is an essential investment since you’re investing in yourself. As a result, you can pay essential dividends in terms of confidence, career, self-esteem, and even relationships. And since the treatment cost with lumineers is generally comparable to the costs of invisible aligners or braces, it is easier to find the ideal option to boost your smile, which falls within your budget.

As we mentioned before, the whole procedure can be performed in only two or three visits to the dentist.  The investment of your time will not be more than one or two hours during every visit. You could have the dental lumineers treatment performed during your office lunch hour if you like.

Other Price Factors You Should Consider

Some patients will want to cover all their visible teeth. This will drive up the price of lumineers. You only have to cover those teeth with visible damage using lumineers. Therefore, your cost will be lower in case you have only a single damaged tooth.

Before your dentist quotes for you the price, he/she will first examine the teeth. This is done to determine their general health and assist you in deciding whether dental lumineers are an ideal option to correct the problems you have concerning your teeth’s appearance.

Many dentists prefer following up with their patients approximately two weeks after the process to ensure correct placement and fit. You should ask whether or not the appointments are covered under the quoted cost, or you have to pay an extra fee.

Additionally, ask about the guarantee of the dentist on the work he/she has performed and request details on the warranty of the manufacturer. Most dentists fix any issues related to placement or fit, while others might charge a certain fee to replace a lumineer.

Are There Diet Restrictions with Lumineers?

After your dental lumineers have been fixed, they are in place. They are firmly bonded to the teeth, meaning you can eat and drink anything you please with confidence. Make sure you maintain perfect oral hygiene. Visit the dentist every six months for a dental check-up and cleaning to keep the lumineers looking their best and the gums healthier for a long-lasting period.

Possible Lumineers Side Effects

The various potential side effects of dental lumineers include:

Gum Tissue Response

Gum tissues do not automatically adjust to foreign material that’s placed on the teeth. That is why you should expect that it could take time for the gums to adjust to dental lumineers. There is a possibility that you might experience discomfort or inflammation in the soft tissues.

Color Inconsistencies

Different factors may affect the ultimate color of your dental lumineers. They include the color of the fixing substance, the color of the underlying tooth, and the shade of the lumineer. These factors will dictate how lumineers will appear when they are already fixed to the teeth. Your dentist has to consider the three factors above carefully to prevent any inconsistencies. Additionally, lumineers might stain easily along their edges. Your dentist will not be capable of correcting the lumineers’ color after completely attaching them.

Slight Tooth Sensitivity

Note that dental appliances like lumineers take a little of the patient’s enamel. This is why there’s a likelihood that a patient might experience mild tooth sensitivity. The slight sensitivity usually occurs when one is taking cold or hot foods or beverages.

Find an Experienced Lumineer Dentist Near Me

At the Downey Dentist, we employ modern dentistry practices to enhance the appearance of your smile and look by systematically repairing the damage. Our dentists will come up with a custom plan that will enable you to meet your requirements. We invite you to call us at 562-746-0350 and schedule a consultation with our dentists to achieve a perfect and beautiful smile.