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Dentist Stained My Lumineers

March 13, 2018

dental patient smilingWhat do you do if your dentist does the opposite of what you asked for with your smile makeover? One of the things he and I discussed ahead of time is that I wanted a really white smile. Yet, when my Lumineers came back, it turns out he put a stain on them. I didn’t realize that until he’d already bonded them on because I didn’t get to see them. When I asked him why, he said it was so they would look natural. When I reminded him that I wanted a very white smile he told me that I had to trust as the dentist he knew what he was doing. I’m just not happy with this and I paid quite a bit of money to get the “smile of my dreams”. What do I do?

Catherine M.


Did Miley Cyrus Get Lumineers?

December 28, 2017

person smiling next to dental itemsMiley Cyrus seems to have a new smile that’s really pretty. Her old smile wasn’t bad, but this is much better. I was wondering if you could tell me if it’s Lumineers because I’ve been thinking of getting these.

Misty C.


My Dentist Told Me Not to Use Lumineers to Fix My Gap

October 28, 2017

kid with missing toothI saw an advertisement on television for Lumineers. The commercial said it could fix tooth gaps. I’ve had a gap and never realized it could be fixed without braces. So on my next appointment, I told my dentist I wanted Lumineers to fix my gap. He said that was a waste of money and wants to do dental bonding instead. Shouldn’t I decide what to do with my teeth?

Marc G.


Help! My Lumineers Don’t Match Each Other

August 29, 2017

Can you help me? I specifically decided on the Lumineers brand of veneers for my smile makeover because I didn’t want my teeth ground down. I’m worried I have a defective batch. When the dentist placed them on my teeth, I noticed two of the teeth didn’t match the others. They seemed a bit darker than the others. I mentioned it to the dentist right then, but he assured me it was just the lighting in his office. However, even when I got home they looked darker. I don’t know if it’s my imagination, but it seems like they’re still getting darker. What do I do?

Paula M.

Dear Paula,

Oklahoma City Lumineers

I don’t think the batch is defective. Instead, it sounds to me like the dentist didn’t get the bonding correct on the two that look discolored. Bear in mind that I haven’t actually examined you. I’m basing this on your description.

If the bonding wasn’t done properly a couple of things can happen. First, things can get trapped behind the veneer between that and your tooth. Lumineers are very thin. If there’s discoloration underneath it will show through. Secondly, whatever’s trapped behind the veneer will be a haven for bacteria and will lead to decay. Plus, without a secure bond, you risk the veneers coming off. Though in this case, falling off is a good thing, so they can be properly bonded.

It doesn’t sound like you have a highly skilled cosmetic dentist. Not only was the bonding not done properly on two of them, but he didn’t take your concern seriously enough in my opinion. A skilled, artistic cosmetic dentist will ALWAYS make sure the client is thrilled before permanently bonding on their work. Additionally, they allow the patient to look at the veneers in several different types of lighting to ensure they’re pleased with the results. Many also have a beautiful smile guarantee.

In this case, because they’re new and the dentist made an error (If my thoughts are correct) then he should be willing to replace them free of charge. They’ll have to be removed and new ones made if they break in the process of trying to remove them.

If he balks, you can get a second opinion from another cosmetic dentist. Don’t tell the second opinion doc who your dentist is, in case they’re buddies. If the second dentist agrees with my assumption then it will be easier to put pressure on your dentist to make things right.

There’s something I wanted to clear up. You mentioned you specifically chose the Lumineers brand over other porcelain veneers because you didn’t want your teeth ground down. Porcelain veneers, no matter what brand you use, do not require your teeth to be ground. You’re thinking of porcelain crowns. Because they surround your entire tooth, your teeth have to be ground down to almost nubs in order to make room for the crown.

Porcelain veneers only require very minimal shaving, about the depth of your fingernail. There is no visible difference between a shaved and unshaved tooth.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Don Swearingen.

Groupon for Lumineers

June 24, 2017

My wife grew up in a very abusive and neglectful family. While her mother was busy shooting herself up, my sweet wife took care of her siblings. From the time she was ten years old, she’s been an adult. Combine that with the fact that her family was very poor, you can imagine she has a hard time spending money. Her teeth have always embarrassed her. I love her smile, but I know it bothers her. I want to do something really special for her which she’d never do for herself. I’d like to get her a smile makeover. I think if I tell her it’s a Groupon, she’d do it. She thinks Groupon makes it okay to get something, because you’re saving so much money. Is it possible to do that? How does it work? I keep hearing about Lumineers on the television. I looked it up and they have a Groupon. I don’t know anything about cosmetic dentistry, so I’m not sure if Lumineers is what would make her feel as beautiful as she is.

Richard P.

Dear Richard,

What a fantastic way to honor your wife. Just from the short bit you’ve written, I can tell she’s an amazing woman. The type of woman who deserves to feel like a princess. However, I’m glad you wrote first. We’ll start with Groupon.

I’m certain the Groupon would require you to use a certain dentist. You’d want to research that dentist before you purchase anything. Is he (or she) a skilled cosmetic dentist? What type of results do they get? Maybe they’re new to smile makeovers. They could be using Groupon as a way of drawing in cosmetic patients to give them practice. There have been many smile makeover disasters where people spent thousands of dollars and wound up with a smile which looked worse than the one they came in with. You don’t want that happening to your long-suffering wife.

Next, let’s discuss Lumineers themselves. I’ll be honest with you. Lumineers are often marketed to inexperienced cosmetic dentists as being easy to place. So, many unskilled cosmetic dentists use them. In fact, some of the best cosmetic dentists do not like the Lumineers brand. This particular company requires dentists to use their lab. The skill of the lab is equally important to the skill of the dentist. I’ve known quite a few highly skilled dentists who feel this lab is sub-par, at best. She’d be better off with a different brand. Choosing a great dentist is the key. They’ll know which brands will fit your wife’s smile design best.

In your place, I’d research great cosmetic dentists in your area. Check out their smile galleries to see if you like the results they get. Do they offer a beautiful smile guarantee? If not, use someone else.

Then, bear in mind not everyone is a candidate for porcelain veneers. Your wife will need a consultation with the chosen dentist to 1. determine her candidacy and 2. discuss and design her dream smile.

She may not even need veneers to get a gorgeous smile. Maybe her teeth just need some straightening and whitening. In that case, I’d combine the Invisalign and teeth whitening procedures. These are fantastic treatments which don’t cost as much as veneers.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Don Swearingen

Why Can’t I Talk Correctly Since Getting Lumineers?

April 26, 2017

I don’t know what to do. I got Lumineers because I’m going on a book tour and wanted to look my best. I’m supposed to read an excerpt and then do a signing line. I think they look okay, though they seem bulky. My biggest problem is I’m speaking funny and my tongue keeps catching on them. My dentist says I’ll get used to it, but I haven’t and my first tour date is coming up. What’s going on?

Eliza M. – Dayton, Ohio


You’re in a pickle. The problem is a combination of the dentist and the brand. Lumineers are advertised to inexperienced dentists as being easy to place, no-prep veneers. That tends to give a lot of inexperienced cosmetic dentists the confidence to move forward. That might work on cases that are textbook, but very few cases are textbook. Most, need at least minor shaving to make the case look right.

You could go back and have your dentist try to adjust the Lumineers, but depending on his skill it might not do much good. With your speaking dates coming up quickly, you might do better to go to an expert cosmetic and have the changes made. If you’re thrilled with how they look you can just have them adjusted. But, if there’s the slightest bit of disappointment in how they turned out, I recommend you get a refund and then have the case re-done by someone with more expertise.

Don’t be surprised if they recommend a different brand of porcelain veneers. Many highly skilled cosmetic dentists aren’t thrilled with the Lumineers brand. Much of it has to do with their lab, which they require dentists to use. It doesn’t give the most artistic results.

In the meantime, I’d recommend practicing your passages as much as possible. That’s just as a precautionary measure. You may find you do adjust enough to get through the book tour and then can deal with everything properly when you’re not feeling quite so pressured.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Don Swearingen.

Lumineers with Groupon

February 23, 2017

My wife has always wanted to get a smile makeover, but we’ve never been able to afford it. I noticed there’s a Groupon for Lumineers. It’s still expensive but just in my ability to cover. She’s spent her entire life putting her desires on hold for everyone else. I thought this might be a way to thank her and let her know we recognize her sacrifices.  Is it safe for me to get her a Groupon makeover?

Alex M. – Tennessee


It’s lovely that you’re wanting to acknowledge her years of loving service. We often overlook the sacrifices our family makes because we’re with them all the time. I’d take some precautions before investing.

First, before someone gets a smile makeover they generally have to be examined to ensure they’re a good candidate for Lumineers (or any other brand as well). If you purchase the Groupon and it turns out she’s not a good candidate, then there’s no way to get a refund.

Next, I’d like you to know a little more about the dentist who’s doing the procedure. Not all cosmetic dentists are alike. Two dentists can do the exact same type of smile makeover with the same materials and the cases will look totally different.

There are lots of cosmetic dentistry horror stories. I’d hate for your wife to be one of them, especially with this being a dream of hers for so long. It might be safer for you two to work together on this. She’d appreciate the recognition and getting to team up.

Call the office that’s giving out the Groupon. See if they do complimentary consultations to see if she’s a good candidate. Then, do some research on their cosmetic skill.  Look at their smile gallery to see what before and after pictures look like of actual cases he’s done. Don’t let them show you stock photos.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Don Swearingen.

Will Lumineers Look Fake?

December 3, 2016

I want a smile makeover. I suggested Lumineers because you don’t have to remove any tooth structure. He told me it was a bad idea because everyone would know they were fake teeth. He said porcelain veneers were a problem and never look natural. Instead, he wants me to get dental crowns. He said they’ll look more natural. I don’t want an unnatural smile, but one of the reasons I suggested Lumineers was I didn’t want to remove healthy tooth structure. Dental Crowns remove even more tooth and my teeth are healthy. Is there another option?

Melissa – Michigan


The problem isn’t with porcelain veneers. The problem is your dentist. He is likely a very decent family dentist, but an absolutely horrible cosmetic dentist. He can work with crowns but has no real experience with porcelain veneers. So, instead of referring you to someone who can give you a gorgeous smile, he suggests a treatment he knows how to do. But, do you have any guarantee that it will be beautiful? I’d be willing to bet it won’t be. So, you’ll remove healthy tooth structure and end up with a subpar smile.

So, what do you do? I’d suggest you find a different dentist for your smile makeover. One who has a great deal of experience doing porcelain veneers. It doesn’t have to be Lumineers. In fact, you will likely get a more beautiful smile with a different brand. Ask to see before and after photos of their work. It would also help if they had some form of a beautiful smile guarantee.

I’m not suggesting you leave your dentist completely. Just don’t use him for cosmetic work.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Don  Swearingen.

Can I Whiten Lumineers?

October 1, 2016

I recently got Lumineers. I’m mostly happy with them. They look good, but are not as white as I’d expected. My dentist says that’s because they’re intended to look natural and that’s as white as they get.  Is there a way I can whiten them? I know it sounds vain, but I got these because I wanted more of a Hollywood smile. It matches that in everything except the color.

Dania L. – Pennsylvania


You have every right to want your smile to look Hollywood. It’s not vanity. It’s about confidence.  Unfortunately, you went to the wrong dentist. It’s obvious from what you’re telling me that he doesn’t truly understand cosmetic dentistry.

We see this a lot in dentists who do Lumineers. They’re marketed to dentist’s who are inexperienced in the cosmetic procedures as being easy to place. Place, yes. Make beautiful, no.

While the shade he gave you may be the whitest “natural” shade. Lumineers, along with any other brand of porcelain veneers can look as white as you want them to look. There are a bunch of shades a cosmetic dentist works with that a family dentist dabbling in cosmetics would be unfamiliar with.

I wish I could tell you that you could whiten them, but any color changes would have had to been made before they were bonded on. Only natural tooth structure responds to teeth whitening. The Lumineers are stuck the color your dentist made them.

You could try to get a refund and then have them done by a more experienced cosmetic dentist. The fact that he told you they’re as white as they get, might give you some leverage.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Don Swearingen.

My Lumineers Don’t Match My Other Teeth

August 6, 2016

I had four Lumineers done. I like them and they’re a beautiful shape and color, but they don’t match the teeth next to them. My regular teeth are darker than the Lumineers. Can I whiten them to match?

Celeste E. – Oregon


I’m glad you’re pleased with the Lumineers. I think the bigger problem here is you went to an inexperienced cosmetic dentist. Four Lumineers aren’t enough in your case and that obvious because the teeth next to them are visible.

Now, let’s say that four was absolutely all you could afford. In that case, your dentist should have had you whiten your teeth BEFORE the Lumineers were made. That way you could whiten them to the brightness you’d like and then your dentist would match the Lumineers to them.

Now, you can still whiten your teeth, and it may help, but they will not be an exact match to your Lumineers.  If you want an exact match, I would get a two to four more Lumineers to put on the adjacent teeth. You’d only need four more if you have a very wide smile.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Don Swearingen.

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