I am sharing my story in hopes that others will learn from me, and I really don’t know what to do now. Since I was 24, I have had four porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns on my front teeth. They looked OK at first. But, they began to look worse over time. The first thing I did to freshen up my smile was get Kör whitening. Big mistake! The whitening ended up making my crowns look worse. After the fact, I learned it was because teeth whitening treatments will not whiten crowns. They will whiten only natural tooth material, which ended up making my crowns look darker.
Next, I visited a cosmetic dentist and he was simply too expensive for me. He showed me countless beautiful smile makeovers and presented a plan to me that made sense. I just couldn’t justify the cost.
So, I went to another cosmetic dentist who recommended doing eight teeth in the treatment plan, which was even more expensive. He explained that I just wouldn’t like the end result if we only did the four crowns over again. In hindsight, he was right. But, I wouldn’t even listen to their payment options because I was so shocked at the price of the work.
Sadly, I settled with going back to the original general dentist who did my crowns in the first place. I somehow justified to myself that I he would somehow do better than the big, long crowns I’ve had all my life. I settled for the cheap option. Please don’t follow my footsteps. It won’t be worth it. But, here is what happened.
First mistake – I picked a shade that looked almost green in color. Isn’t that his job? Anyway, he promised that he would make sure I liked my smile. But, in the long run he couldn’t handle my requests. They look short now. I think he was overcompensating from my complaint of the originals being too long. And the color – green. Need I say more. I drove him crazy with details and he turned me over to his dental assistant. When it was all said and done the said, “Don’t look on the internet at those perfect teeth. Your smile looks fine.”
Well, there you have it. Fine. It has been three years since me choosing cheap dentistry over the best cosmetic dentist. I don’t know what to do. I honestly just wanted to vent in hopes it may help someone else avoid making the same mistakes I did.
-Sandy from California
Wow – thank you for sharing your story. Unfortunately, it sounds like you’ve learned your lesson the hard way. Hopefully, your transparency with your story will encourage others to not settle for the least expensive treatment option. Cosmetic dentistry is expensive. But, the right cosmetic dentist will hopefully be able to work out payment arrangements or financing options that work for you.
Honestly, if you cannot afford cosmetic dentistry, it may be best to not do anything, save up and go back to the best cosmetic dentist when you can afford it.
There are so many lessons learned in your story. One worth revisiting is about the first dentist who allowed you to whiten your teeth with Kör bleaching. If he knew what he was doing and was honest, he would have never whitened your teeth knowing you have four crowns. There wasn’t a chance that the whitening would end up improving your smile. That left you in a position where the only alternative is to replace the crowns.
One other comment about the second dentist who was recommending doing eight crowns instead of four. Many cosmetic dentists may disagree on their treatment plans. Sometimes an excellent cosmetic dentist won’t accept your case if they aren’t confident that you will end up with a beautiful result. It’s a situation where they care too much, in a way. That is likely what was going on there. He felt that doing four crowns would only look OK. But, in order to give you the result you desperately wanted, eight was the way to go. Again, it’s something for others to look out for. It didn’t necessarily mean he was trying to sell you more, it was likely his intention to give you the absolute best result.
Some cosmetic dentists will still work with you as long as they are clear about setting your expectations for the end result.
Again, thank you for sharing your story. At this point, it may be best to save up for the right treatment plan and best dentist you can afford.
This post is sponsored by York PA dentist Donald H. Currie, DMD.