Tetracycline stains and short roots. Veneers or crowns?

i just turned 70 and about to embark on cosmetic dental work. My dear dentist told me my roots were short from braces and, after being on tetracycline, bleaching will not work. So, my question is what is the best option. Veneers or crowns? She is suggesting crowns. At my age I just want to get this work done once. Many many thanks for any input.

Doctor Answers 7

Tetracycline stains and short roots. Porcelain Veneers or dental crowns?

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Congrats for your desire to look good and feel good ! Love it!
As a cosmetic dentist, If I need to choose: porcelain veneers vs dental crowns, I would prefer porcelain veneers!
It all depends on how dark are your intrinsic stains, and your bite !
Your short root is a compromise no matter if you choose porcelain veneers or porcelain crowns, so that is what the cosmetic dentist needs to work with anyway! we can not increase the root length!
If the stains are deep intrinsic, you might be needing a little more aggressive preparation of your teeth, if you choose dental veneers, but any time of the day this is better than 360 degrees removal of your tooth structure.
If the back of your teeth are healthy do not do porcelain crowns!
Make sure your dentist or cosmetic dentist have a great master ceramist to be able to block out the color underneath and at the same time give you a color that you desire.
Porcelain veneers can easily take off some years from your face, and you will have a great smile.


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its time for you to make a big change, perform a complete makeover, do not think if veneers or crowns, would be better, one from the other, leve it to the doctor , but always on this cases, with short roots, as long they are strong teeth, a crown would be your best option, you can change shape, size and even color, you will enjoy a beautiful smile again, and also if you plan to do a vacation in paradise, you should look what its done in dental tourism,

Tetracycline short root teeth

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If the concern is that the teeth have short roots Veneer vs crown do not make any difference. However, if the crown part of the tooth have decay or large unhealthy fillings then making crowns instead of veneers would be the right choice. Also if the stain is severe or moderate then for the restoration to mask out the darkness of the natural tooth it has to be thicker which means more shaving of the front of the tooth. In this case the veneer would not bond very well to the tooth surface and therefore crown would be s better choice. If the stain is mild, the crown portion of the tooth is (are) not compromised nor damage and if your bite and occlusion allows then veneers would be more conservative and less invasive treatment.

hope that helps.

Sam S. Sadati, DDS, FAGD
Wellington Dentist

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Veneers Or Crowns

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First of all, congrats on turning 70!  As far as your case,  I have treated many patients with short roots with success.  It is hard to definitively give you an answer without photos, but if possible I would opt for veneers over crowns.  By placing veneers I can keep your bite very similar or exactly the same as it is now.  This is important  when you have very short roots.  We do not want to change your bite and put undue stress on the teeth with limited root support.  This has worked for me many times in the past with success and feel it is likely the best option for you.  Find a very experienced cosmetic dentist to treat your case and you will be fine.  Good luck.  

Tetracycline stains

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Hi Renee, sorry to hear about your frustrations.  I have an office in Philadelphia and we have a whitening process called KoR which is specifically designed to treat those with very dark or stained teeth.  It would be great to see if that would work prior to other cosmetic dental work.  Veneers are more conservative than crowns but it depends on how dark the teeth are since you want to block the color from showing through.  You may thus need crowns rather than veneers but we have had some great success with KoR. 

Leonard Tau, DMD
Philadelphia Dentist
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews


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You are always better having your own tooth structure in your mouth. Veneers conserve more of your precious tooth structure then do crowns. Therefore, veneers are your best bet

Kenneth A. Barton, DDS
Manhattan Orthodontist
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

Porcelain Veneers or Crowns

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Congrats on your 70th year milestone. I also congratulate you on your continued dental health. I wish all my patients valued their smile to the same extent as you.

By age 70, it would make sense that crowns are the best option.

Seek a cosmetic dentist who performs hundreds of these procedures and who is an expert in this field.

Best of luck, 

James Asaf, DDS

James Asaf, DDS
Beverly Hills Dentist

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.