A few years ago, I had Lumineers done. I remember at the time, my dentist called it bonding. He said they were “no-prep veneers” and he did it all in the office in one day and charged me quite a pretty penny for it. I was not informed that they would stain and discolor in only a few years’ time. Is there any way to lighten them without spending a lot of money? I already spent a lot in the first place, and am now across the country so going back to the original dentist is not an option. — Monica
I’m sorry you’re in this predicament. Lumineers and bonding are two different things. In general, porcelain veneers (like Lumineers) do not discolor or darken over time. Actually, they are much less likely to discolor than natural teeth or even direct composite veneers. It sounds like you had actual bonding done — not Lumineers. Bonding on natural teeth can discolor fairly quick, and is most often suggested as a temporary fix by cosmetic dentists. Once bonding is stained, the only remedy is to have the bonding redone (where having it replaced due to discoloration can be a repetitive cycle), or moving on to a more permanent solution, such as veneers (which can last up to 20-30 years with proper care).
Even if you did actually have Lumineers, or any veneers, teeth bleaching/lightening would not be an option. That is only going to be effective on natural teeth. Unfortunately, any which way you proceed to fix the look of your previous dental work will cost money. Most dentists offer affordable payment plans for scenarios like yours, so perhaps that is something you can look into.
This blog is brought to you by Dr. Alana Macalik. For more information on the services she provides, visit her Arlington cosmetic dentist website.