I went to see my dentist about fixing a large tooth gap I have. It’s about 8mm wide right smack in the middle of my smile. It has been a source of embarrassment for most of my life. I told him (my dentist) that I am too old for braces. He suggested Lumineers. I was excited until he quoted me the price. While I am the one who limited him to no braces, is there any other treatment possibility? If not, I’ll suck it up and do it.
Wow, I’m glad you wrote before moving forward with this. First, let’s talk about the size of that gap. Normally, a tooth gap would be fixed using some dental bonding. However, 8 mm is a large enough gap to fit an entire tooth in the space. That would not look natural at all.
Even with porcelain veneers, it would take an expert cosmetic dentist to pull this off and make it look natural. I can tell you already your dentist is not an expert cosmetic dentist by the brand of porcelain veneers he recommended.
Lumineers are heavily marketed to inexperienced cosmetic dentists as being easy to place because they tell the dentists they’re thin enough to be placed without any tooth preparation. While this can work sometimes, in most cases it ends up looking bulky. Not to mention, there is a LOT more to making a beautiful smile than tooth preparation.
I’m going to suggest you do Invisalign. I know you don’t want braces. I’m going on the assumption that is because of the metal wires and brackets. With Invisalign, no one will even know you are straightening your teeth. Invisalign uses clear aligners, which makes it invisible even at a conversational distance.
If you are deadset even against using clear aligners, then you will need to go the porcelain veneers route. However, be very careful about who you have do this. I wouldn’t go to the dentist who suggested Lumineers. You want someone who has invested a lot of time and training in cosmetic work. I’d be certain, at the very least, to look at their smile gallery to see if you like the work they do. You want to be blown away with the results they get.
You also want to be sure you get final approval. He (or she) should agree to use a temporary try-in paste. You’ll want to look at them in various lightings and decide if you love them or not. I don’t mean like them. I mean love them. If you don’t, your dentist needs to send them back to the lab and try again. He should be willing to do this until you are completely thrilled.
If they don’t agree to those terms, move on to someone else for the cosmetic work.