This is part 2 in a series where Dr. Mike Crete describes an conservative esthetic case where he combined Invisalign and veneers. Part one looks at helping the patient become aware of the possibilities. Read on for the conclusion.
A Smile Dialogue
… All of this conversation took place in about 5 minutes at the end of the patient’s initial hygiene examination. I then invited him to return for a ‘complimentary smile analysis’ appointment where I would take a series of digital photos and then sit down with him and talk about what we could do to improve his smile.
I find I can build trust and credibility with a new patient by offering to see them for this complimentary appointment. It only takes about 20 minutes and I typically ‘convert’ the patient to a records appointment (comprehensive exam, X-rays, and mounted study models).
The records appointment was scheduled. More co-discovery revealed how significant Drew’s self-esteem was impacted by his smile and his ‘baby face and baby teeth.’ The records appointment was followed by a diagnostic wax up (or a “3D Design” as I like to call it when talking to patients).
Then a consultation was done to review treatment options. This was a formal case presentation using Powerpoint, photos, and mounted models. Drew’s mother sat in on the consultation appointment.
By having accurately mounted study models on a semi-adjustable articulator, I was able to determine I could give Drew an ideal occlusion AND a pleasing smile. This would involve some minor tooth movement using Invisalign for 6 months and then restoring his upper and lower anterior teeth with conservative porcelain veneers. His posterior teeth were equilibrated during the restorative process. Also, an upper bite guard was fabricated for nighttime wear and added protection of the restorations.
Drew graduated from college approximately 18 months after I first met him. He completed an internship during his final semester and then was hired by the Fortune 500 company immediately following graduation. He recently got married and said to me, “After I had my teeth done everything in my life started to fall into place. I graduated, got a great job, and met the love of my life. Thanks, doc.”
Changing a smile and changing a life. It’s being able to impact the lives of others in this way that makes it so rewarding to practice dentistry!