From when I was a very young man I had a hard time connecting to others due to my painful shyness, which was in part due to the fact that I had really bad teeth. My family wasn’t in a financial place where braces or orthodontia on any level were an option, so it was just the way it was. I hated smiling or having pictures taken because I was so self-conscious of my teeth.
For years I have suffered from painful teeth and gum issues. Many of my teeth ended up fractured or had to be removed, especially back teeth… top and bottom. This eventually led to jawbone deterioration as I couldn’t afford the dental care to deal with the losses. Part of the bone has flaked off or splintered and has caused me many gum infections. Too many to count anymore. When I went to the dentist a few months ago, I was informed that my teeth all needed to be pulled and my jawbone shaved to prevent further deterioration. Even though I hated my teeth, they were all I had so I hung on as long as I could. Eventually I wore my front teeth to nubs from having no back teeth. This in some ways expedited the deterioration.
I never imagined myself with dentures and to be honest, I still struggle with the idea. Yet here I am. Acceptance.
I have taken a temporary position of working double shifts at my job, was approved for some in-house financing, out-sourced financing, and even then, with my insurance, I will be $4,901.00 short. All top teeth were pulled a month ago, and I’m now supposed to schedule my bottom teeth removal and jawbone shaving in the next month. Because of the extent of the work needing to be done (enough bottom jaw bone will need to be removed to not be sufficient to support ordinary dentures) it will take 3 months to heal completely before stationary dentures (over 2 implanted posts) are to be fitted.
The dental total is between $14,000 - $15,000 dollars. I have done everything within my power to reach this goal without asking for help. I am pretty close, but overtime at work is no longer an option and I am at the place that I need to reach out and ask for help. Anything that you can donate to help me get my dental work finished will be greatly appreciated.
I look forward to the day that I can actually chew well, eat pain-free, smile for family pictures and not be self conscious in the process.
Thank you for taking the time to read my story.
- Dave Rodriguez
- Lisa Grierling and Family
- Danny Holt
- 1st Ave Baptist Church
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