You Don’t Understand the Importance of Your Smile Until You Lose It
Boutique Dentistry for Nashville, Tennessee
We often talk about the importance of having or sharing a smile. It’s an easy thing to say, and we mean it sincerely. We think we understand how important smiles are. But we don’t truly understand just how important smiles are until we are forced to do without it.
The importance of your smile is underscored by a man who lost his ability to smile and struggled to live without it for years.
At the Center for Advanced Dentistry, Nashville cosmetic dentist Dr. Kent E. White helps people who can technically smile, but don’t want to smile because of the appearance of their teeth. Fortunately, we can give them a beautiful smile so they feel free to smile again.
Cancer Cost Him His Smile
The Guardian shared the story of James Parkin, a man who was diagnosed with an aggressive salivary cancer that had to be removed surgically. He was warned that the cancer might have affected his nerves. If it did, he was told, the nerves would have to be cut, which would lead to partial paralysis of his face.
As it turned out, that’s what happened. Before the procedure, he hadn’t worried about the consequences of losing his smile, but when he did lose his smile, it turned out to have a very serious impact on his life.
Living Life without a Smile
Parkin quickly learned that without a smile, it was a lot more difficult to communicate with people. Shortly after losing his smile, he had an encounter with a woman at the pharmacy. He tried to politely demonstrate that she should go first, making an “after you” gesture and smiling. But with his paralysis his smile turned into a grimace. The woman responded with a “confused and slightly mistrusting look.” That look showed him just how differently people would respond to him without his smile.
Parkin’s daughter worried, “How are you going to get a girlfriend if you can’t smile?” but he realized the problems were more immediate than that. He found that his inability to smile impacted his work as a project manager, which depended on his ability to work harmoniously with people on deadlines and tasks. There is no easier way to defuse tension around these types of issues than with a smile. His inability to smile also impacted his favorite hobby: playing in a band.
Parkin started seeking to restore his smile as soon as possible. Although he had a procedure to bring back control of his facial muscles, he is still unable to smile, nearly three years after his operation.
Over time, he worked through many of these issues. He learned to work harder at interpersonal communication, choosing his words more carefully and using extended eye contact to convey his meaning. He even met a girlfriend. But he still looks forward to the time when he will finally see positive results from his surgery.
Let Us Restore Your Smile
If you are unhappy with the appearance of your smile to the point that you choose not to smile, you understand how much it impacts your life. Let us help you regain your smile. With cosmetic dentistry, we can address essentially any complaint you may have about the appearance of your smile, including discolored teeth, crooked teeth, and even missing teeth. In most cases, you can have a beautiful new smile in as little as one month.
To learn how you can get back your smile in Nashville, please call (615) 383-6787 today for an appointment with Dr. White at the Center for Advanced Dentistry.