Paven and my son, Shanaz, are both studying Dentistry. They’re the best of friends and often sit together in class. It was only natural then that Shanaz recommended that Paven come in to see us for a consultation. You see Paven had fallen down when…
Phua Zhe Xuan is autistic. He has been a patient of ours for years … Klinik Pergigian Fauziah has had an on-going Special Needs Programme for kids ever since we started the clinics back in 1988. When Zhe Xuan first became our patient, he used…
Ina is an editor and journalist for a local publishing house. She always comes in with her best friend and colleague, Shamsiah. The two friends are inseparable … they have been fast friends for years and always give each other moral support … hence it wasn’t a surprise when the two came in for Ina’s big day.
Ina had finally summoned up the courage to get her makeover. It had taken her some time as, like many people, she is/was terrified of dentists.
Ina came in yesterday with a big smile … she was nervous and excited at the same time!
She said as she sat on the dental chair, “Doctor, I didn’t sleep last night! I was so nervous … are you sure this is not going to hurt?”
I laughed and said, “Well I don’t plan on hurting you!”
Ina and I had discussed her treatment plan earlier. She was clear she didn’t want to have braces done. It was Razid (see Razid’s Miracle Smile) who had referred her to us. He had made the same decision as she had, to go for bridge work to correct her crossbite.
“I bumped into Razid yesterday at the canteen … I told him I was seeing you today ……. he said good luck!” She giggled nervously.
I reassured her that she would be walking out of the clinic with a new smile … and would not be in pain too.
It was a complicated case … I had to do an immediate bridge on Ina’s right side and balance everything using composite veneers on her left … I didn’t waste any time and started immediately … after all I had 2 hours to complete everything!!
We worked whilst chatting with the two friends … every little while Shamsiah would jump up to get a better look and tease Ina.
I took my time and did her upper teeth first.
I had to create the temporary bridge first to guide the composite veneers on the left side, so that took the bulk of the time … I absolutely refuse to let my patients go home with ugly temporary bridges!!
At last, after a good hour and a half of work, Ina was ready for the magic mirror.
Ayu passed her the mirror … Ina glanced over at Shamsiah, took a deep, deep breath and looked at herself for the first time … she gasped and then buried her head in her hands. Her shoulders were shaking!
Shamsiah and I got worried … sometimes the shock of seeing a complete makeover makes people cry … but Ina looked up seconds later … she was laughing and laughing and laughing!
She was so happy … she said,”Doctor, thank you! Thank you! I never thought I would have straight teeth!”
We all started laughing!
I reminded Ina that her lip was still numb and would be numb for another hour … but Ina wasn’t listening! She was busy looking in the mirror.
I polished the temporary bridge and chose the colour based on her lower teeth.
Ina was still looking in the mirror.
Once we were finished, I started the clean up for Shamsiah.
…. Ina was still looking in the mirror and still laughing too!
I reminded Ina that the bridge was still a temporary and that she had to return for the actual impressions in two weeks … Ina looked up from the mirror, smiled and nodded!
It is so, so, so fulfilling to be able to create dream smiles for patients!
It’s moments like these when I am thankful I chose to be a dentist so many years ago.
As we said our goodbyes to Ina and Shamsiah, we were all smiling and teasing Ina … this was one difficult case but boy! it was a wonderful success!
It was a long trip to the Mekong Delta. We drove out in the (thankfully) air conditioned bus through the busy Saigon roads early in the morning. There were motorcycles everywhere with their riders wearing all sorts of helmets … even baseball caps with straps…