Up close and Personal with ErrolSeptember 27, 2011
Errol’s smile was very much in need of improvement, and Errol knew it. But, like many of the patients we have treated successfully, he didn’t, at first, know where to find the right professionals to do the work. Luckily, he saw us in a television show and decided to see if we could create the smile he was hoping for. We were eager to help Errol, but realized during his first consult that the solution to his problems required more than the simple fix he imagined would do the trick. It’s always difficult to deliver this news to a patient, so we try to be very clear in explaining not only what would be the best procedures, but also why they are necessary. In Errol’s case, the “why” included the news that one of his upper front teeth required extraction because an earlier root canal had failed, and infection was spreading around the tooth. The best choice for Errol, under the circumstances, was an implant replacement. The aesthetic challenge was twofold: first, we needed to determine a temporary replacement after the infected tooth was extracted and an implant placed. In few months we are ready to finalize the implant crown since the implant has now integrated fully. Now the porcelain crown over the implant is ready to be finalized. A few things had to be considered namely, the shade and height of the implant crown; implant crowns often appear taller than the adjacent teeth because the infected tooth that was replaced more than likely suffered from bone resorption.
Our ultimate plan for Errol was to place porcelain crowns and veneers on his six front teeth. But we began (for aesthetic reasons) by placing a temporary crown that was attached to the adjacent tooth during the healing process. Including the five additional crown/veneers, Errol’s entire course of treatment took five months to complete–actually less time than we had expected for such extensive work, especially when an implant was involved.
Although Errol is a reserved and private person, his personality opened up as his new smile emerged. By his last visit, we were delighted to see him happy and joking with out staff. And we were also delighted to know we had made a difference in his life.