Tag Archives: Crooked Teeth

Invisalign or porcelain veneers

I wanted to get Lumineers. I have a tooth which is a little crooked. Not enough for full orthodontic treatment. That’s why I was hoping to do Lumineers because I was told they could just go on top of my teeth. My dentist said I could do them, but would need Invisalign first for the crooked tooth. Are both really necessary? That’s more money than I was planning.


Dear Katie,

Invisalign aligner

Please bear in mind that I haven’t seen your case, but in general you would either do Invisalign or Lumineers, not both. There would be some exceptions in severe orthodontic cases. Based on what you’d mentioned, I don’t think that is your situation.

Let’s go over what you can do with each treatment and you will have an idea of which will most help you meet your smile goals.


These use clear aligners to straighten your teeth. No one will know you are wearing them, even at a conversational distance. That is why some people call them invisible braces.

They are more comfortable than traditional metal wire and bracket braces and usually work in half the time.

The aligners have the additional benefit of being able to double as teeth whitening trays. This allows you to straighten and whiten your teeth simultaneously.

If all you feel your teeth need are a straighter look and whiter color, this method will save you thousands of dollars.


The first thing you should know is that Lumineers are simply one brand of porcelain veneers. Most expert cosmetic dentists prefer other brands. This is mostly because this brand is owned by the DenMat company, which requires dentists to use their labs. This lab is not known for skilled results.

Porcelain veneers, when done by a skilled cosmetic dentist can completely remake your smile. They can change the shape of your teeth, the size of your teeth, and the color of your teeth all at the same time. It is the go-to for celebrities trying to get that perfect Hollywood smile.

While it won’t straighten your teeth, it can make your teeth look straight.

Even without the need to make your crooked tooth look straight, doing a smile makeover is an advanced procedure. Your particular case requires a little more expertise.

If you want to go that route. I’d go to aacd.com and search for an accredited cosmetic dentist in your area. Dentists who’ve reached accreditation are the top cosmetic dentists in the country.

This blog is brought to you by Lafayette Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Mike Malone.

Why would I need to do two procedures to get pretty teeth?

I want to have my teeth much whiter. I also have one front tooth that is a little crooked. Not much. I was told by a friend that porcelain veneers would take care of both of these things, but my dentist wants me to have ortho done and then veneers. Why would I need two procedures?

Jermaine – San Jose, CA


You question leaves me wondering if there’s something unique about your bite that your dentist is recommending both procedures; because, you’re right, generally you would either do porcelain veneers or invisalign, not both.

Invisalign will straighten your tooth and ensure your other teeth are in proper alignment. You could also whiten them simultaneously. Your invisalign trays can double as whitening trays.

Porcelain veneers are a better option if you want to change more about your smile than just color or crookedness. For instance,  if you wanted to change there shape as well, I’d definitely recommend veneers.

If I were in your place I’d get a second opinion by a highly experienced, artistic cosmetic dentist. Ideally, you’d want someone who is accredited with the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD). If you don’t have one of those nearby, you can go on the mynewsmile.com website. They recommend expert cosmetic dentists by area.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Mike Malone.

Snap on Smile for straight teeth

Will snap on smile make my teeth look straight? I’m too old for braces.

Cathy- Maine


Whether Snap-on Smile can make your teeth look straight, will depend on how your teeth need to look straight. If you have a large overbite, then it would make your smile stick out further.  If your teeth are a little crooked, then it will make them look straight. You need to know that while this will give you a decent smile, it will not give you a stunning smile like you would get with porcelain veneers.

You mentioned that you are too old for braces, but have you considered getting Invisalign? These will straighten your teeth with invisable aligners. No one will even know you are straightening your teeth.

This blog is brought to you by Lafayette, LA Dentist Dr. Mike Malone.


Choosing between Invisalign invisible braces or porcelain veneers

I have always wished to have a really beautiful smile, and have finally reached the point where I can afford to do it. I have one tooth that is crooked, but other than that no big problems with my teeth. I want them to be much brighter and whiter, so I’ve been considering getting 10 porcelain veneers on my top teeth. Whenever I look at the pictures on dentist’s websites, I really like the smiles of the patients who got porcelain veneers.

My dentist doesn’t seem all that excited about this, though, which is weird to me because it is a LOT of money I am ready to spend on this. He has suggested that I consider Invisalign invisible braces instead. I can only see one crooked tooth, so that seems like overkill, to get braces for one crooked tooth. He says he will do the veneers, but that I should have the Invisalign treatment first. That will add up to a year to my treatment time, not to mention the extra cost.

Is this usual, to have orthodontic work before getting veneers placed?

Thanks for your input,

Shelly in Grosse Pointe Woods

Dear Shelly,

This is only speculation, but it could be that you have a bite issue or serious crowding issue, and that is prompting you dentist to push for the braces first. If that is the case, he should have told you why he was making that recommendation. It is customary for a dentist to recommend either Invisalign or porcelain veneers, not both. It is also possible that he thinks the use of the Invisalign braces and a professional teeth whitening will yield the results you want without placing porcelain veneers. Again, if this is what he was thinking, he should have communicated it with you.

In this case, I would recommend a second opinion. Don’t tell the dentist what your current dentist said, and see if he recommends a similar course of treatment.

If you do decided to go with porcelain veneers, make very sure your dentist is an expert cosmetic dentist before you have him do the work. Check his work though his website, or ask to see before and after pictures of his porcelain veneer clients.

What is faster than braces?

I am getting married a year from now, and searching for “The Dress” was an eye-opening experience, and not in a good way. After a while, all I could see in the mirror was my crooked, crowded teeth! I really want to look and feel my best for my wedding day. I had a consultation with an orthodontist, and she told me that straightening my teeth with braces will take at least two years. I don’t have that kind of time! Is there a faster way to have a really beautiful smile for my wedding day?
–Kimberly in Bangor, ME

Dear Kimberly,

If you have crowded, crooked teeth, there are a couple of different ways you CAN have a beautiful smile in just a few months, but only if you consult the right professional. You need to talk to an expert cosmetic dentist, not an orthodontist. An expert cosmetic dentist (especially one accredited by the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry) will be able to offer you options that a traditionally trained orthodontist is not qualified to provide.

Invisalign braces can straighten your teeth in six to nine months, depending on the degree of crowding. Extremely crowded teeth might take a little longer, but treatment with Invisalign braces rarely takes more than a year. An added bonus to using Invisalign is that even if your treatment is not completely finished by the day of your wedding, the aligner can simply be removed for the big day and pictures. If your teeth are otherwise intact and attractive, Invisalign might be the way to go.

An even faster option is to go with porcelain veneers, but here especially you must be very careful about choosing the right dentist. Many dentists have the technical skill to place the veneers, but they lack the artistic sense to make your smile truly beautiful and natural. If your teeth are discolored or misshapen, porcelain veneers can give you a really gorgeous wedding day smile quite quickly.

The bottom line is that you really should have the advice of an expert cosmetic dentist that has experience with both treatment types before you make any decisions. Choose your dentist very carefully, and then you know you can count on their advice to be sound.

Good luck, and congratulations on your wedding.