Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at Beacon Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons! Our entire team is thankful to serve The Dalles, Gresham, Milwaukie, Vancouver, and the greater Portland Community with high-quality oral and maxillofacial surgical care. To show our appreciation for all the support we have received from this community, we decided to give back through our Second Chance program.
The Second Chance program aims to transform a community member’s life by providing them with a full mouth restoration—at no cost to them. Poor oral health and extensive tooth loss can severely affect a person’s life. Many people with poor oral health suffer from lowered self-esteem, difficulty eating and speaking normally, and chronic pain. People without the financial means to restore their smile can start to feel hopeless, but the Second Chance program can help them restore their smile, improve their oral health, and improve their overall quality of life.
We received many applications, which further demonstrated the need for quality oral surgical care in the northern Oregon region. In the end, we could not decide on just one recipient, so we chose two. Both Jaclyn Guernsey and Christina Mercier were selected to receive upper and lower full-arch restorations.
Jaclyn is a homemaker who suffers from many health problems including Sjogren’s, Dilated Cardiomyopathy, Epilepsy, Lupus, Thyroid Cancer, and a blood clotting disorder. Despite the fact that Jaclyn brushed and flossed her teeth frequently, the Sjogren’s along with other health problems caused tooth decay, and her remaining teeth eventually had to be removed. After her teeth were removed, the dentures her dentist made her would not fit properly, and she was told she would need pre-prosthetic surgery for dentures to fit properly. Her insurance denied this procedure, and she was left with no teeth and no way to pay for treatment. Losing her teeth has devastated her self-esteem, and made her feel like she cannot fully participate in society.
Today Jaclyn is in the treatment planning stage. She looks forward to finally taking pictures with her son and feeling confident in her smile. She also looks forward to helping out at her son’s school and even helping coach his sports teams without feeling like she can’t smile at the kids. We were truly inspired by her desire to participate in community events despite her difficult health situation, and we are glad to have met Jaclyn and heard her story.
Christina also suffered health problems that led to tooth decay. Years ago she underwent radiation therapy for Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, and the radiation to her head and neck damaged her oral health. She had no choice but to undergo the treatment, and eventually her teeth began to break off during meals. When we met her, most of her teeth were broken, missing, or had cavities. Her two-year-old daughter often noticed her broken teeth, and Christina felt too embarrassed to smile around anyone.
Christina has undergone her initial procedure, and she currently has a temporary set of teeth, which allow her to smile with confidence while her dental implant sites heal. Once her permanent, custom restoration is complete, it will be placed, and she will be able to eat whatever she pleases. She is happy to be able to smile again and looks forward to eating without the fear of pain and broken teeth.
We are so fortunate to have met Christina and Jaclyn, and we are glad to help change their lives in such a positive way. Our entire team thanks both recipients for sharing their stories with us, and we look forward to serving more community members with this program in the future. If you are interested in learning about our permanent tooth restoration options, such as dental implants and full-arch restoration, we encourage you to contact our office. Thank you so much for reading, and have a great Thanksgiving!