The Pros and Cons of Lumineers, After the Fact

My experience with Lumineers has been a mixed...

My experience with Lumineers has been a mixed experience. I like my dentist very much, and he followed the directions from Lumineers exactly. That didn't always work. For instance he had to order a special diamond saw to separate my teeth from being uni-tooth when he cemented them. One of them didn't fit right, and he asked me if I wanted a new one made. I chose not to , but to wait see how this one worked, and from the stories I had hear, if this one fell off or not.

So far it has not. It sticks out a little bit but not annoyingly so or conspicuously so. I was sick of dental work, and felt If and when it falls off, since my dentist has already ordered a replacement, I would deal with it down the line.
For anyone considering getting Lumineers, this would be my advice:

1) Don't do two many at once. Do maybe two or three at once. They are not like “contact lenses for your teeth by any method of description—that is just straight up a lie.

2) So, you should go in to it understanding that since, they are NOT the thickness of "'a contact lens" your teeth will be thicker. They also are not flat—they wrap around the bottom of your tooth and make your tooth thicker on the biting surface as well. This makes it difficult to bite an apple or something like that. It also makes the space between your front and back teeth thicker.( ie your front teeth will be more prominent.)

3) If your Lumineers are significantly whiter. They will look more prominent as well. This has pros and cons. More “toothy" looking, but good-looking teeth.

4) Once they are in. look and see if they look how you want. If not , mess around on the computer and shape then. Then show this to your dentist. My dentist shortened and thinned my front teeth so they didn't hit my lip. this made a big difference. Make sure your dentist is committed to your happiness with the Lumineers. My dentist was/is wonderful like that.

5) Don't expect them to look as opaque as your natural teeth, they are more solid looking, so they don’t look just like your own teeth—but then you probably aren’t that fond of how your own teeth look if you are considering this .
6) If you are doing it mainly for whitening, BY ALL MEANS--try all the whitening procedures first. If they don't work, well then maybe this is for you.

?7) I don't LOVE the way mine look, but when I see pictures of myself before, the yellow and misshapen parts of my teeth did make me look older. (I am already older than all the check here choices being in my 60s)

?8) Remember to really work hard to find a dentist committed to making sure that he or she will adjust the Lumineers, as long as necessary until you are okay with them--no matter how long that takes,?

?9) Find out all you can and BE Aware: There is more pain and more chemical stuff involved than they indicate. Not killer pain, but you may need to be numbed for some of it. Be aware it isn’t two visits. It takes longer than they say if you are getting multiple teeth done. Your new teeth will be more bulky and they will need to be tweaked. This is common sense. Teeth are not as thin as a contact lens to begin with and You will need to get used to them being about double.

On the plus side, my teeth are much whiter (one of my kids loves them and wishes she had them-she is an entertainer) they are shaped better now (finally) and I have gotten used to eating and speaking with them.

They make me look different, more "toothy" which is good and bad. My teeth are more prominent, but at least they are nice looking teeth now.

So, I guess the most important thing is to make sure you know what you are getting into, and decide if this procedure will give you what you want or not.

It is expensive and despite what they say, there really is no going back , (no matter what they claim) because they do shorten your natural teeth. Unless your teeth are too short to begin with , they have to because if they don't (as was mentioned by another poster) your new teeth because of the bottom wrap of the Lumineers , are too long and may hit your lip.

10) I probably would not do it again, if I had it to do over, but now that it is done, I can see up-sides to it. They have been holding up very well and I now notice how stained the teeth are of most people in their 60s. They have no vertical lines like they were developing, and I am hoping for the best.

They are easy to care for, I don’t wear the night guard because it bothers my jaw, and have not noticed any wear from not wearing it.

Dr. Richard Polgar

My dentist and staff were wonderful. They always accommodated me if I had any problems. They worked around what I wanted and did so with good humor and common sense. My dentist did everything the way that Lumineers said to do things. I read the information myself and they shared it with me. Some of the stuff just didn't work and he had to improvise, which he did well. He is a really nice person and tried to make it as easy as possible. I have gone to him for over 20 years now and have always had a good experience with him and the staff.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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I just saw my first commercial for lumineers… My husband had an accident a few years ago which resulted in him having to have his front teeth filed down significantly to "save them" and make them look better due to cracking. He is very unhappy and doesn't qualify for invisalign due to an unruly lower tooth. He is unhappy with his tooth color and is embarrassed about how short the front top teeth are. He had them filed as a less expensive alternative to costly procedures at the time (we just couldn't afford it). He doesn't look the same since all that happened and we have been looking for a reasonable fix for his issues. I personally don't care for the look of the classic veneers. I think they are very big and obvious looking, so I have tried to talk him out of that. It sounds like lumineers would be good for hubby…. considering the shortness of the front teeth already. I also wasn't aware that you could do a few at a time… So he could basically have the top 6 or 8 done top and bottom???? I noticed that someone mentioned going to more rural areas rather than metro areas for savings…. does anyone know what the basis of the range is? strictly condition of the teeth? even with the negative reviews I am excited to get more info for hubby. He is very sensitive about his teeth and looks and the accident really has made a difference in his confidence as far as smiling is concerned. thanks all for the comments.
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Research the BEST COSMETIC dentist and apply for CareCredit I's a payment plan. Do not go to a cheap "cosmetic dentist" because they do not have the slightest artistic bone in them. Above all look for a true dental artist. I think temporary snaponsmile can boost his confidence until you have the money for it. Best of luck the story is touching and I genuinely hope you find the best option. Please do the research and go for the best even if it is expensive it is worth it.
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I think your teeth look great now!
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Jeff, I'm wondering the same thing. I have 25 year old veneers. But maybe they were lumineers because they did not grind down the sides of my teeth. But, my teeth are shorter. I wish I could just take them off. I need to redo them, because they are chipped & stained around the edges. But I don't want my teeth ground down to stubs! Well, that & the expense. I have been holding off on doing this for 7 years!!!
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Marie, I would say lumineers can work wonders in your case. It would have better results and a lip lift would be that useful in case of small tiny teeth.
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I have small teeth, I hate my smile because they a so small, they a straight , I don't know if a lip lift would help or lumineers, if you have any suggestions I d appreciate it. Thanks
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If your teeth are small, I think lumineers would probably be okay for you. They will be thicker than your teeth, so know that. I know what you mean about hating your teeth. I hated how stained and naturally yellow mine were. It has been a few years now and I am finally pretty happy and glad I did it. Did you mean lip lift or gum lift? The Lumineers I think are the best deal if you have small teeth. Then the looking bigger that is inevitable, would be a good thing right?
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Lip lift is what I ment, the only thing that worries me is the filing down of your original teeth, there's no going back!
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No, that is true. No going back, but if your teeth are too small, they won't have to file them down really much. In fact it might be difficult but it might even be reversible in your case if you went slowly and hated it. You could start on one or two teeth on the back sides and see if it worked for you. Then no harm no foul. If I had smaller teeth, I would have had no problems really, if I hated them. They will still be small even if you have a lip lift. Is that reversible if you don't like it? I don't know, here the lumineers seem like a better choice. Did you look at my before and after? I was disgruntled for a bit but now I am glad I did it. The only thing I liked better before that matters to me, is that my teeth are a little bit too big now, but they were big to begin with. They are not as opaque either, but I can live with that. Nobody notices that but me.
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I hate my Lu miners After 20k and 5 years later my old teeth looked better these things are grey.
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Dear MaRSon, I am sorry to hear that. Sometimes you cannot get real looking veneers without grinding down the teeth a little, or even Emax crowns. Raj
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Yes I think that you know your own teeth and in most cases, people decide on lumineers without knowing the downsides.
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Dear Annie, as an older patient then you have had a good run for your money with your natural teeth and yes they do darken over time.
You are perfectly entitled to turn the clock back and have lumineers.
As an older person the teeth are internally thicker and the nerve is deeper away from the surface so yes the dentist has more enamel and dentine to work with.
If you want to turn the clock back then yes try lumineers, but before you do try deep bleaching first and if it works then try Invisalign to straighten the teeth.
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Thanks Raj:
I have them and the did make my bottom teeth look much younger. The top ones are thicker and sort of unnatural looking, but I did try deep whitening and it really didn't do much for my teeth. My dentist did shorten my teeth and they look kind of bulky and are not as translucent as real teeth, but they don't hurt , they didn't take off much enamel off of mine at all, and they are much whiter, but not "Chicklettes", so I guess it is what it is. I did try everything to get them white, and since I was going with them on the top it seemed silly to straighten the bottom if I was getting them anyway. They aren't that bad, but I would say for most people they are not a good choice.
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I am getting more used to my Lumineers and I don't hate them anymore. I have learned how to bite into stuff, it is just a little more difficult . But I have to say that I had yellow teeth my whole life. always, even as a kid and I always hated them. I tried zoom, I tried a few other whitening techniques and they never made my teeth anything more than a little bit less yellow, and even if I drank coffee with a straw and stopped eating berries which I love, they always went back to stained yellow. Now I have had the Lumineers for a while and they are a tiny bit darker than they were when new, but they are still white. (not chicklette white) but white. I just went to a funeral where there were lots of people my age, and yes my teeth look lumineer-y but when I smile, it is really noticeable that they are NOT yellow. This might seem like no big deal, but it makes me look a little bit younger than the other people. Yellow teeth to the extent that mine were yellow, really make you look old, in a way that kind of looks like having one foot in the grave. I would ask Ram Kumar, if now that I have Lumineers am I just stuck with them? Is there any other thing I could do that would be less bulky? My teeth are still strong. My lower teeth had been very crooked and now the lumineers make them look straight. No, they are not perfect, they have drawbacks, they are bulky and opaque more than translucent, biting on an apple has to be done in bigger bites with the back of the teeth, but when I see a picture and I am the only one without yellow teeth, I feel okay about it.
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To all the comments about Lumineers.
Veneers have been around for over 25+ years and they were an alternative to porcelain crowns.
Whenever a tooth was discoloured, chipped, rotated or misshapen then the dentist used to grind down the tooth to a small peg and then fit a crown over the top.
Even if the front of the tooth was visibly ugly, the dentist still had to grind the back and the sides for a crown, weakening the tooth and encroaching upon the nerve.
The upper lateral (small) incisor is frequently lost and replaced by other means, because it is the smallest tooth out of the top 6, always involved in smile design, but was ground down to insignificance and then subsequently the nerve died.
So the crown was on but the nerve died. The dentist drill through the crown, locates the nerve canal and removes the nerve. Whatever was left of the tooth was then hollowed out and filled with a rubbery filling.
The tooth eventually snaps at the gum and is too thin to restore.
NOW back to veneers. Veneers were seen as a less destructive way of smile enhancement, whereby only the front of the tooth was ground down.
THE problem was that if the teeth were very crowded the patient was offered veneers as an alternative to metal braces.
SO most dentists started to heavily grind down teeth to accommodate veneers instead.
The teeth were weakened, some veneers fell off and some teeth needed root canal treatment.
Veneers were better than crowns, but what most people needed was ortho and whitening.
ALL veneers are bonded onto the shiny virgin enamel.
TAKING them off is not easy, will involve damaging the enamel and you can never get that natural shine again.
AS most peoples teeth fill the smile envelope that is individual to that patient, then placing a very thin LUmineer will take that tooth out of the envelope.
The teeth will be bulkier and the bite will be altered.
SO Lumineers are NOT reversible, do make the teeth STICK out and due to their thinness you cannot get a natural look of depth.
No person walks around with teeth that are slanting backwards allowing the space for Lumineers.
In fact I lie, there are a few, but it is not the norm. In class2 division 2 bites the front 2 teeth are slanting backwards, so if you want them to be straight, then Lumineers are too thin to make any difference. You would need a veneer with a 2-3mm thickness at the edge to bring the teeth into line. A tooth with a thickness of 3-5mm in total would look silly, so the dentist always trims the edge of the back of the tooth.
If your teeth are straight, but discloured then do deep whitening.
If your teeth are crowded/gappy then do Invisalign with whitening.
If you cannot be bothered and want to worry about biting into a baguette, then have Lumineers.
As a cosmetic dentist I stopped doing veneers 9 years ago and exclusively carry out
Invisalign with whitening.
I have saved the smiles of thousands of patients. I say thousands, but what I meant was 730 actual patients and thousands of others, who consulted with me but went to other dentists because they thought I was expensive and that their teeth were cheap.
YOU get what you pay for these days.
I earn less money than a cosmetic dentist, do not drive a Ferrari, but I save peoples' teeth and I sleep very well at night.
Dr R Kumar
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From what I have assessed from your post, you do not condone veneers because they
- are not reversible due to the encroachment of the enamel
- make the tooth too thick and stick out
- distort the ability to bite effectively

My question is this:

Can't the tooth/veneer be shaped in a manor that enables the ability to bite (sharper at the tips so one can bite effectively) ?
How much more are the teeth ground down for veneers than they are for porcelain crowns? At this point, there doesn't sound like there is much difference.

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So Raj, are you saying that now that I have lumineers that I am just stuck? I guess that is what you are saying. I did have braces and didn't have a problem with the line-up of my teeth now or then. I did however have really yellow teeth. I had Zoom and other whitening techniques but they never really did much of anything . My teeth still looked yellow and made me look a lot older than I was. Yellow teeth look very bad on older people. So is there some other kind of whitening I could have had? My teeth had been yellow my whole life since I got my permanent teeth.

Is there a way to make them sharper? I have become used to not biting into hard things anymore, so that isn't a problem and I don't eat wheat at all so no loss on the baguette. fruit was the problem I had, apples mainly but with the drought after the frost, I don't guess that will be a problem this year. I eat other fruit with no problem/s (berries, melons, ripe soft pears, tomatoes, avocados, celery and carrots, all no problem. So, if I am stuck, I guess I will live. My teeth were shortened before they were put on the last time because they were so long that the lumineers were bothering my lip so no really going back for me. Oh well.

I still am glad that my teeth are not yellow and I am also glad that they did widen my smile out a but on the sides. Over all I wouldn't have done it if I had thought that i could have whitened without Lumineers. But if the only way to whiten was Lumineers, Now after seeing the teeth of others my age (60s, 70s) I do get grossed out by how yellowed they are and how they look like thin yellow tissue paper. I knew a friend years ago who was a wonderful woman.She was smart, and well read, and interesting and a really nice person. She had awful yellow, nearly gray at some parts teeth. It was really distracting. I know that is a shallow thing to say, and I never would have said it if she were still alive, but she was part of my motivation for losing the yellow teeth. Mine don't look perfect. They do look kind of bulky and are less translucent and shiny than real untreated teeth. But I have to say when i see pictures of myself (candid shots ) before and after, I really notice the yellow on my old smile and don't miss that at all.
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Dear Penelope,
I do not agree with veneers because I do not see teeth that are that stained internally that they cannot be whitened, unless they belong to a person from the 3rd world who suffered from Tetracycline staining.
Most teeth can be straightened or whitened or even refilled.
Veneers are less invasive than crowns as the sides and back are reduced much more than for a veneer.
Ask yourself how many dentists do you see sporting veneers or crowns?
Ask yourself why as a cosmetic dentist am I not selling veneers at $20,000 a smile?
Because when I trained at Guys Hospital for my dental degree I learnt a lot in the conservation department, where we conserved teeth.
By all means trim back teeth and have veneers but then you have things that may crack, fall off or recede the gums.
Veneers can only be thinned from the front and hence be weaker or from the tooth underneath and behind the veneer, but then you lose the supporting tooth structure.
Enamel is one of the hardest materials out there and it is natural and free.
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Dr. Kumar,

I am not from a 3rd world country, but I am from a very rural area in Mississippi. =) When I was born, I was given tetracycline and my teeth have been grayish eversince. I was quoted that $19,740 for 4 veneers and a 3~unit bridge and some other work that didn't sound like it was going to whiten my teeth. because all of my teeth can be seen when I smile.

In my research I have read many female reviews stating their teeth are thick and stick out. Since female teeth have more curve than male teeth (something I also discovered in my research) would crowns be better for a female since you indicated that veneers obviously become weaker if they are thinned which would make contouring to the point of gender aesthetics not feasible?
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Dear Penelope, Tetracycline staining is seen less in developed countries nowadays. My advice would be either to live with the lumineers or get new normal veneers contoured from a wax up model to your liking. Most veneers to be aesthetically pleasing need the enamel to be reduced. In cases of Tetracycline, the tooth structure underneath may be darker after preparation. Advice from an expert is advised.
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I'm so glad I read this before I rush out and got Lumineers. I've definitely changed my mind. The only problem is I was told by a dentist that I didn't qualify for invisalign because of how my teeth are. I didn't know that was possible and I really don't understand what he meant. I don't want the unattractive braces I've changed my mind about Lumineers so what are my other optins? I have a gap between my two front teeth and I want it closed. My teeth are white so that's not an issue. I need help
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dear Keisha, out of thousands of consultations I can think of about 10 that were not suitable for Invisalign. So please send me some pictures of your teeth and I will give you my opinion.
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That was a very offensive remark. I am not from a "3rd world" country. I am 47 and from a middle class American family. Unfortunately, when I was six my eardrum ruptured and I was prescribed Tetracycline. I have suffered the consequences for 41 years because of a doctor's five minute decision.
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