Ramses, a longtime patient of Fresh Start’s charity for children, was born with a genetically-determined condition called amelogenesis imperfecta, which is a disorder of tooth development. Amelogenesis Imperfecta causes teeth to have an abnormal coloration, be unusually small, pitted or grooved, and to be prone to rapid wear and breakage. All these symptoms made eating difficult and often painful. Because of how his condition was perceived, Ramses rarely smiled and found it difficult to be in public.
Ramses came from a large family in San Diego that was unable to cover the costs of a new smile, let alone two, because his twin sister, Estefania, was also born with amelogenesis imperfecta. Their mother had exhausted all her options, visiting various clinics that were unable to help her children because the procedure to repair Ramses and Estefania’s smiles was considered “cosmetic” even though it impacted their health. At the rate Ramses’ teeth were deteriorating, he would have been toothless before entering adulthood. So in 2008, a former Fresh Start employee referred the twins’ mother to Fresh Start and Ramses and his sister became patients when they were 15 years old.
Over the course of six years Ramses attended more than 60 dental clinics and underwent one children’s cosmetic surgery to achieve the beautiful smile he has today. His dental plan included getting braces, therapeutic head-gear, a surgery to realign his jaw line, regular dental hygiene visits, and finally in March of 2014 he received porcelain veneers. Through it all, Dr. Al A. Fallah, DDS, Cosmetic Dentistry has been by Ramses’ side, providing him with free dental care in San Diego and restoring his smile at no cost. Fresh Start members have seen a complete difference in Ramses, he is now more confident, no longer hides his smile, and is a proud part of our successful reconstructive surgery stories.
“I now have the confidence to walk up to girls; I would not have done so before”
(Translated from Spanish)