Rise To Challenge : Dr. Dini

This blog would be slightly different from my other blogs. Yes, it’s still about makeover, but it’s a bit personal than the rest.

Challenges…It either can kill us or make us stronger. In my opinion , the only way we can grow is through challenges. We have to step out of our comfort zone, put aside our ego and learn new things for us to become better at what we do. To become a better person! Once we manage to overcome the challenges , it brings a sense of accomplishment.

I had 2 difficult and challenging cases last month. Both were makeovers. Both involved choosing the right shade of teeth. One of the things I have to deal with when doing makeovers are patients’ satisfaction and expectations. I would say, these two are very hard to accomplish. When doing makeovers, it is not about how I or we, dentist perceive what the teeth should look like, but rather what the patient’s want. Regardless of my professional advise, I have to respect the patient’s wish. However, at the end of the day, we do meet half way. Both parties win. Both parties are happy. I’m going to share with you one of the cases today.

Notice the peg shape of the lateral incisor and the old bridge.

Zu requested to change her upper left bridge because she wasn’t happy with the current one. She explained to me that she didn’t like the shape of it. After thorough examination , I sat down and discussed with her. I laid out few treatment options and she agreed to redo her cantilever bridge as well as to do composite veneer on her left lateral incisor. It sounded easy peasy right ? Nope.. Far from it. It had its own complications. First, once the bridge was inserted in her mouth, the shade was wrong. It was too white. Second, Zu wasn’t satisfied with the shape of the bridge. She requested to have it shorter. I had to send back the case to the laboratory for the adjustment. We had to wait for 2 weeks for the new one.

The shade of the bridge was too white and also the length of the canine was too long.

When the new bridge finally arrived and fitted in, both of us were happy with the shade of the bridge, although Zu wasn’t totally happy with the length of the canine on the bridge. I had to trim the length of the teeth in the mouth. Also the shade of the veneer of the lateral incisor didn’t match the rest of the teeth and I had to change that as well. I took 3 hours to finally achieve the right shade. The longest time I took to do 1 composite veneer. I have to admit, during that time, it was so frustrating that I just wanted to give up. However, I told myself to keep focusing on Zu. This was not about me. This involved another human being who trusted my capability. I resetted my focus , keep changing and layering the shade until I finally got it right!

The final result!

We started the makeover journey on 27th August and finally on 25th November the journey ended…beautifully, I would say even with its challenges. You see , dental makeover is a PROCESS. It’s not going to finish in 1 visit or 1 day. It is a JOURNEY. A journey between two strangers that are willing to trust each other in order to achieve their goal. Mine would be to see the patient smiling wide when they leave the clinic and for the patient, obviously to have their dream smile achieved!

Dr. Dini (dini@drfauziah.com)

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