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Julian Chen
Julian Chen, Dentist
Category: Dental
Satisfied Customers: 568
Experience:  Practicing General Dentist since 2002
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I would like to get my 2 front teeth straightened as I was

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I would like to get my 2 front teeth straightened as I was hit in the face by accident & my 2 front teeth are now crooked.
A previous dentist had to do a root canal procedure to save the teeth & cemented the 2 front teeth together to make them stronger & prevent them from moving. However this cost me over $2,000.00 & the dentist never even straightened them at all..
I am getting married in February 2010 & want to get them straightened as I use to have beautiful straight teeth.
Can you please advise me what procedures I should enquire about and how much the dentist should be charging..I am looking for the most cost effective procedure..

First, congratulations on your upcoming wedding in February.

You've got ~2.5 months before the wedding and what options are available to you would depend on the current condition of those 2 front teeth. You noted you were hit in the face before and one or both of them had root canal treatment done. They are also now bonded together as if they were once piece.

Unfortunately, what I don't know is how severe the accident was and whether by bonding the 2 front teeth (splinting them) may have resulted in your tooth being "ankylosed" (or fused with the bone). If there is any sign of ankylosis (fusion), then getting braces is no longer an option. Ideally, I would suggest getting braces to straighten your teeth because it would involve the least amount of damage to the teeth themselves. We wouldn't have to drill into them to place fillings, veneers, or crowns. Braces would typically give patients the best, ***** ***** results, but it will take many months. Given the time frame (between now and your wedding) you probably wouldn't want braces anyway.

You have 2 options left:
1) Veneers, could be porcelain or composite.
2) Crowns

Veneers would be more conservative, as we would only need to shave down a little bit of your teeth from the front side and the biting edge, leaving the rest of the tooth intact. However, if due to the accident, most of your tooth is already filling, then going with crowns would be the better option. This is because veneers are "bonded" to the tooth structure, and the bond strength depends greatly upon how much enamel (the pearly white part of your teeth) is left. When we try to bond to dentin (the layer of tooth under the enamel), the bond strength is only 25-40%, so it would be much weaker increasing the potential for the veneers to pop off.

Veneers comes in 2 types:
1) Composite veneers. These can be done "chairside" in the same visit. They are also less expensive in the short tun. They are simply tooth-colored bonding material glazed over the tooth structure. The downside is that over time, they will stain and discolor/darken and cannot be whitened by teeth whitening methods. Only way to lighten them would be to replace them. How good the turn out is also dependent on how skilled/artistic your dentist is. If your dentist is more cosmetically-oriented, then composite veneers can be done very nicely.

Here's an example of some composite veneers I did for a patient of mine:


2) Porcelain veneers. These will require that the dentist take impressions and send them out to a lab to be made. The turn-around time for porcelain veneers will be about 1-2 weeks, so be sure to get a consultation sooner rather than later. They can be made to look very natural, assuming the lab that your dentist uses is good with cosmetic work. They will be more expensive (usually the same cost as a crown). The good thing about porcelain veneers is that they do not stain easily at all.

And of course, lastly, you can restore your 2 front teeth with crowns if it's determined that you don't have sufficient tooth structure for veneers. Turn-around time for crowns range from 2-3 weeks.

Time is of the essence here. Do not delay. Every so often, I get a bride-to-be coming through my office 1-2 weeks prior to her big day wanting cosmetic work done. And I'd have to tell them unless they're willing to shell out big bucks for my lab's rush fee, I won't be able to complete the treatment. And I have to turn them away or they reluctant pay the extra fee.

In any case, schedule an appointment with your dentist ASAP for a consultation so that you can get your teeth restored prior to your wedding day. Congratulations again and best of luck to you.


Jul***** *****, DDS
Customer: replied 7 years ago.

Thankyou for that very informative information.

Can you please advise average cost for:

Porcelain Veneers x2

Composite Veneers x2

Crowns x2

P.S If I were to go with Composite how long before they start to stain & if the veneer pops off then do I need to replace them?

Cost of the procedures will vary (sometimes greatly) upon the area you live.

Average cost of porcelain veneers ~$800-1200/each.
Average cost of composite veneers (chairside) ~$300-$500/each.
Average cost of crowns ~$800-1200/each.

The rate at which the composite stains depends upon your diet. If you love coffee, drink wine, or lots of dark-colored juice/beverages, then they will stain faster. It could be as quickly as 1 year, or it may take upwards of 5-7+ years for them to start showing some signs of staining and deterioration.

Yes, if a veneer pops off, you will want to replace it. With a composite veneer, a new one will need to be placed. If it's a porcelain veneer, then we would have to see whether the veneer chipped/broke, or if the cement simply came loose and the entire veneer came off in one piece. If it is the latter, than we can almost always simply rebond it. If there was a chip/fracture, then a new one will need to be made.


Jul***** *****, DDS
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