Journey to a New Smile
February 3, 2015 , Personal
This may be the ODDEST post I have ever done but I feel that it is a huge part of me. Since I was a little girl I can remember the traumatizing experience of the dentist. I know we ALL say that but for me it really was awful. At a very young age they realized that I was missing 9+ adult teeth. My parents decided to go with a plan that required 4-5 teeth getting pulled and then braces put onto close the spaces. It would be cruel to pull 9+ teeth out of a young girls mouth all at once anyways! So braces to close the spaces and 4 years later they came off. My front four teeth are also not exactly what they should be and are called peg teeth. Which basically means they are super small and skinny, not even big enough to really be front teeth. So as soon as they took the braces off they talked about doing a temporary bonding on my teeth to build them up. This was again temporary until we could afford veneers. I was 17.
At 18, I lived on my own and was taking care of myself. I started to get cavities super easy because the enamel on my teeth were literally disappearing. I went in one year later and had a mouth full of cavities. I paid for it all out of pocket and also walked out with an estimate of 18,000 to fix my teeth. This was just an estimate. At 18 I was completely overwhelmed. They went on to tell me how my baby teeth were going to soon fall out and I would need to have a plan in place. Yeah, at 18 years old I was not going to get out a loan for that amount! Crazy! So it had to wait. Fast forward and I get married at the young age of 20. We have always had insurance but no dental. We would go to get a cleaning every year but I would book it out as fast as I could. At 21, my first baby tooth fell out. It was traumatizing and still wears on my self confidence though it should. I think what bothers me most is the fact I have 4+ more that could fall out at any time.
Andrew and I have always wanted to fix this problem because we KNOW you can’t function with out teeth.. especially missing 11 of them. We just knew finances would never stretch to 20K on top of day to day life. About a year ago my wisdom tooth turned sideways and cracked 2 molars. I have been living with the pain and sucking it up because of the whole insurance thing. I know I shouldn’t have. An infection is at huge risk and the pain just gets worse with everyday. So the pain caused me to go into the dentist and get it looked at. That is when they said ” If you are going to get these wisdom teeth out, it would make sense to use the same anesthesia and go ahead and pull these baby teeth. I cried and cried because I know the dollar amounts that ensued with that sentence. Andrew and I agreed.. we just felt like now is the time to just take care of it. As they did more tests they found out more. My sinuses lay over top of my gums, so I need a sinus lift. My actual bone in my mouth is not thick enough for implants so I need titanium plates and some bone replaced. The more they looked into it the more I found out about this mouth of mine. I cried.. cried more.. and just kept crying.
For the first time in my life I feel I actually have a dentist and a surgeon who care and understand how sensitive of an issue this is for me. I have asked God a thousand times why I was born with out 11 teeth. To find out that not only am I missing teeth but, I have teeth that need permanent veneers because they are too small, I need a sinus lift, gum repair, bone repair, and the list goes on… was just more questions to lift up to Him. I have such a peace in knowing He will provide. I battle myself feeling selfish but the truth is no 26 year old should go with out teeth. This is a necessity in my life. I am too young for dentures. This has been a long 20+ years for me and I am so relieved and excited to put this all behind me and just get it done!
This Friday, I will go in for a 4+ hour surgery. I will heal for 3+ months before I can actually have the crowns, implants, veneers, and more done. In the mean time they have made a handy dandy flipper up with teeth in it. Thank God! I couldn’t imagine walking around with out 6 of my teeth! I will wear the flipper for three to four months while I heal and then go in for the actual teeth part of the implants and the veneers. I am hoping by June I will have my finished smile! It is totally dependent in how well I heal so be praying for that.
Though I know this is just a dental and facial surgery it is kind of a big deal to us. It is a HUGE deal financially and it is also a healing process. I can’t help but know that God has something so much bigger than teeth and sinuses to reveal to me. I pray I can be a light to the dentist, surgeon, hygienists. I have learned to no longer ask God why and just give Him thanks for what I do have. I have so much to be thankful for! Though I say that I can’t help but be excited to smile with out turning my head, sticking my tongue where my tooth used to be, and with out embarrassment. Your prayers are appreciated!
Sharing, serving, and celebrating,
Andrew + Chrissy