This is a bit of a more personal post, as it has to do with me and my smile. I was fortunate enough to be able to have porcelain veneers laid over my top front 8 teeth when I was 17 (in 1995).
After having braces, and seeing the ridges they left in my teeth, I was so relieved there was an option to make my teeth look beautiful again. And they did. I got compliments all the time on my new white smile. It was awesome.
Fast forward to 2015 – 20 years later. Despite how well you care for veneers, they do have a lifespan (Typically 5-15 years back then) and I had ridden them out for 20 years. Impressive. But along the way, my gums receded, a veneer or two chipped and was patched with
composite bonding (which stains very easily) and even the whole structure of my jaw had changed and even if I had wanted to show my teeth (which I didn’t); they really didn’t show in smiles anyway. I was embarrassed and walked around looking angry all the time because I was too self-conscious to smile and my jaw looked like it was collapsing in on me. Not cute or sexy in the least!
Late December 2015, I met with a Prosthodontist named Dr. Louisa Berman (in Atlanta at Maple Drive Dentistry), who walked me through the steps we’d take to get me the smile I longed for.
Let me speak about Dr. Berman for a moment. She is so kind and caring when it comes to her patients. She’s always happy to see me, rejoices with me in the small victories along the journey we’ve taken and has incredible skill at what she does. In order for her to become a Prosthodontist, she went to post-doctoral schooling for specialized training – think of what she does is create prosthetics for your mouth. You wouldn’t want a regular doctor creating a prosthetic for your leg if you needed one; you’d want an orthopaedist. Same thing applies in the dental world. You want a Prosthodontist creating dental prostheses for your mouth, not a garden variety dentist. Trust me on this! (My first go around was with a regular dentist – this has BY FAR, been a much better experience!)
And I would be a fool not to recognize one of Dr. Berman’s dental assistants, Sandie Abernathy. Not only is she extremely talented, she takes the time to treat every patient like royalty. Warm neck pillow? Yes, please. Rub my shoulder or hold my hand if I’m nervous. Of course. At this point, I’ve considered her my soul sister. She is great.
I won’t say it was a fast process, nor was it always a comfortable process. but those are temporary restraints. Dr. Berman was able to give me a little vertical lift in my upper teeth so they could be seen when I smiled. She widened the necks of my upper teeth to build up a little bit of mass so that my top lip wasn’t nearly invisible. But she also cleaned my teeth, removed any decay and calculus (which we laugh about because I call it math – get it? calculus, math, haha) and she removed old metal fillings and replaced with ceramic ones and crowns where needed. So not only does my smile look great, my mouth is HEALTHY and happy.
I have a new lease on life now. My gums and teeth are healthy, my smile is white and bright and wide and I swear I look younger. It was dumb luck that I ended up in her office, but I am so thankful I did. She’s changed my life in so many ways! I LOVE MY NEW SMILE!
(I have not received any compensation for sharing my story. It is my own opinion of the services I received and paid for at Maple Drive Dentistry. I just think they’re great!)