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billion dollar smilea complete guide to your Extreme Smile Makeover
By Bill Dorfman Paul Lombardi
Rutledge Hill PressCopyright © 2007 Bill Dorfman
All right reserved.
Chapter Onerazzle dazzle 'em
THE BENEFITS OF COSMETIC DENTISTRY
Like it or not, it's a sad but true reality that people do judge a book by its cover. You get only one chance to make a first impression.
Cosmetic dentistry offers both physical and psychological benefits. An unattractive mouth can make you miserable, but a dazzling smile can improve your self-esteem. A smile can also speak volumes about your health, how you take care of yourself, and how old you look.
Now it is time for you to learn how to capitalize on your smile. You will be amazed to read true accounts about people who used to lead sad, misunderstood lives: beautiful people cursed with less-than-beautiful smiles that didn't reflect and radiate who they were on the inside. Maybe you, too, feel ashamed of your teeth. Are you afraid to smile, afraid to really live and express your true self?
a life transformed: DeShanté Hall
DeShanté Hall is the heart of this chapter-and the whole book for that matter. As one of my Extreme Makeover miracles, she personifies the Billion Dollar Smile philosophy and humanizes society's conviction that looks do matter. A beautiful smile says, "I'm attractive, I'm confident, I'm in control, and I'm healthy."
BEFORE THE MAKEOVER
As you'll see in the "before" photos, before the Extreme Team worked its magic, DeShanté had an asymmetrical face. She was born with a cleft lip and palate, which is an opening in the lip and roof of the mouth that can cause dental, speech, and other problems-and she was also missing front teeth. The result was a huge gap in her smile.
DeShanté's parents did their best to help their daughter, but after several childhood surgeries failed to do the trick, her emotional scars ran just as deep as her physical ones. She was teased so badly that she didn't even want to leave the house. And forget about smiling. DeShanté opened her mouth only when she absolutely had to. She suffered as a teenager as well: no dating, no boys, no self-esteem. But DeShanté wasn't a quitter.
She couldn't afford to have corrective cosmetic surgery, and she was sick of the pain her appearance burdened her with every waking minute of her life. But DeShanté found joy attending church, and she says her Extreme Makeover was an answer to prayer.
When I met DeShanté, I think I was more excited about helping her than she was about getting help. I was so eager to be a part of this young woman's transformation that I could barely sleep the night before.
DESHANTÉ'S NEW SMILE
DeShanté wanted to make her face more symmetrical. That meant a nose job, corrective lip surgery, and most importantly, new teeth. Her lip was collapsed and new teeth were needed to give her lip support so one side wouldn't cave in. She was also missing two upper front teeth.
I used a permanently cemented porcelain bridge and porcelain veneers (more on these later) to replace the missing teeth. Because of her cleft palate, there was no bone, so she could not have teeth implants. When I was finally through, after hours and hours working on her mouth, DeShanté was in tears. I was worried she might be in pain, but she said she was crying because she was so happy. At age twenty-two, DeShanté's new life had just begun.
Excerpted from billion dollar smile by Bill Dorfman Paul Lombardi Copyright © 2007 by Bill Dorfman. Excerpted by permission.
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