How TeethXpress Changed My Life: Leigh’s Dental Implant Story
Leigh always had a ready smile. “My motto throughout my entire life was, ‘Smile and you’ll feel better,’” she told TeethXpress magazine. But in seven years, Leigh went from not having a single cavity to not having enough healthy teeth to chew solid food or smile without shame — until dental implant treatment gave her back her quality of life.
Leigh’s severe dental problems resulted from a mysterious autoimmune disorder combined with the side-effects of the medication used to treat it. Her teeth weakened and cracked. As the years passed, Leigh’s crumbling teeth contributed to worsening health.
“I wasn’t getting enough nutrients, especially protein, because I couldn’t chew,” she said. Eventually she had to be fed intravenously. Leigh learned that dental implants could be the solution to her dental problems.
However, “It was unreachable financially,” she said. “I just didn’t think it would ever happen.” But the dental office put her in touch with a financing company that offered a loan within Leigh’s budget.
With an affordable payment plan, “It wasn’t insurmountable in the end. It was pretty decent and pretty reasonable.” Financial concerns were only one obstacle to Leigh’s implant treatment. Years earlier she had attempted to get a root canal procedure but found she couldn’t get numb with the local anesthetic being used. “I was petrified,” she recalled.
“Before, I used to never smile with my mouth open. Now I gleam nice and big.”
She finally worked up the courage to go for a consultation about dental implants. She was relieved to hear that IV sedation would be available to make her treatment comfortable. But before the implant procedure could happen, Leigh needed to build up her strength. “I had to be strong enough for my body to sustain the sedation and the procedure,” she said.
While she was asleep, the dentist removed her remaining cracked teeth, placed six BioHorizons implants and attached a provisional bridge for an immediate smile. After the surgery, Leigh said the IV sedation was a lifesaver. “I would always opt for sleep dentistry,” she said.
Leigh said that when her husband saw her new teeth, “he was just floored.” As soon as she woke up, “He was saying ‘Look! Look! Look!’ And he’s got this big ol’ mirror in front of my face,” she recalled. “He absolutely thinks it’s every cent well spent!”
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Before the procedure, Leigh said, “My teeth negatively affected so many aspects of my life.” Now she has a lot to be happy about. “I’ve been a smiler forever,” she said. “To be able to smile again is so great, I haven’t stopped.”
Leigh remembers looking at her reflection: “I couldn’t believe it was me.” Others have responded positively as well, telling her that her new implant-supported teeth look exactly like natural teeth. “And I’m proud to tell them they aren’t,” she said.
Leigh no longer tries to hide her teeth. “It’s not an embarrassment for me anymore,” she said. “Before, I used to never smile with my mouth open. Now I gleam nice and big.” Besides saving her smile, dental implants have helped Leigh’s health get back on track.
She can enjoy all foods again and no longer receives nourishment through an IV tube. She is convinced that she would still need IV feeding if she hadn’t gotten the implant procedure. “It definitely has improved my nutrition,” she said.
As she’s gotten stronger, Leigh’s quality of life continues to improve. “I’m walking and I’m driving, which I hadn’t done in years,” she said. “My overall health has been good, and I attribute a lot of that to my nutrition.”