I want porcelain veneers but my dentist wants to do CEREC.

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I have been wanting to get a smile makeover for awhile now. Well, my 50th birthday is right around the corner and I decided that would be the perfect birthday gift. The last time I was in for a cleaning, I asked my dentist if he could tell me about porcelain veneers. He immediately shifted the conversation and suggested using the CEREC system. I have had a CEREC crown done years ago and it seems like it’s doing okay. But I am just unsure about trusting a machine with cosmetic dentistry. I really want a beautiful smile and want to  make sure I’m doing the right thing. Is there an advantage to having the dentist do them with CEREC in the office or does it matter if they are sent to an outside lab?

– Suzanne in Alabama


Many dentists swear by CEREC and are certain they can achieve results just like if the porcelain veneers were sent out to a lab. But it sounds like you hit the nail on the head when you mention trusting cosmetic dentistry to a machine. An expert cosmetic dentist has an artistic ability and typically undergoes extensive training in techniques and the bonding technologies used to place them. CEREC veneers are likely not the first choice of excellent cosmetic dentists. Why don’t you do some web searching and look at CEREC veneers. Do they look symmetrical? Do they blend in perfectly with the surrounding teeth? Does the coloration and gradation look natural? Many cosmetic dentists feel otherwise. They may use CEREC technology for crowns, mainly because they can be done in only one appointment. But when it comes to porcelain veneers, it’s all about reflecting the personality you want to portray, the specific look, and exact coloration you desire. Most experts cosmetic dentists feel traditional porcelain veneers are the answer to the most beautiful smile.

To answer your question about sending the porcelain veneers out of house versus having them done at the CEREC machine, most cosmetic dentists work with ceramists they trust and have worked with for years. Most cosmetic dentists are perfectionist-types so they will prescribe the exact specifications to the laboratory and if they or you aren’t happy with them for whatever reason, they’ll send them back until they are perfect. A great cosmetic dentist wants you to fall in love with the end result.

It may be worthwhile to discuss traditional porcelain veneers with your current dentist. Ask to see photos of his work and see if you love it. There is a reason that he is recommending CEREC. So, don’t push him into anything outside his comfort zone. You’d be better off to find another reputable cosmetic dentist than to ask your current dentist to do traditional veneers if they aren’t his first choice. Cosmetic dentistry is an art. Make sure you select a dentist that reflects this attitude and perspective. Thank you for your question.

This post is sponsored by Lexington cosmetic dentist Hamburg Expressions.