A Dental SOS !!!

I am a 57 year old female, whose heart is crying out for help with my dental situation.

I have many missing teeth, upper and lower as a result of heredity factors as well as financial factors. I have not had the best of dental plans throughout my prior years. During my marriage (I am divorced) I was included on my husbands dental plan but neither his plan nor mine from my job would be able to afford me to have bridges, or even to save a tooth. My husband would always say he was sorry, but it would be less expensive to have a tooth removed. In the meantime, I would have been taking care of different family members and their crisis, so that what ever extra money I could save for dental or my own medical/other needs would fall by the way side.

As a young girl I always had a pretty smile. Now I seldom smile at all. I know I am up in age as so many in my own family say to me not to care because I am older, they don't care how I look, but it hurts alot. I don't think of myself as vain, but I do work in a very public situation and I am dealing directly with the public as well as my fellow employees. I have had to practice at home in the mirror how to talk without opening my mouth to much. I constantly overhear, (diliberate or not), conversations of fellow employees discussing my loss of teeth. There is a group of young people working there who make it a point to jester and yell out remarks about my snaggle tooth situation. I pretend not to notice or pay attention. They have gone as far as to bring it up to a customer visiting the site that I work.

It has become very hard for me to eat. I have almost swallowed food the wrong way due to the loss of so many teeth. I try not to accept any invitations to events so that I won't be subjected to the constant stares and whispering I have gone through when I did go to one. My only daughter has invited out to her home or events. I know she loves me , but she does deal with people from her employ that may judge her because of me. She just got a new boyfriend and he has wanted to meet me to get an idea of the shaping of my daughter, but I have not met him yet. My daughter has basically stopped all communication with me now I guess to avoid any embarrassment and risk her new relationship. I don't blame her I wouldn't want to ruin things for her.

I make good money but I am just getting caught up with past debt left behind from my divorce, and bills that were backed up from me using the money that would have paid them went to helping a three younger brothers of whom all have or are still very ill, of one that past away in 2000 and also helping my mother and her extra expenses while she was ill. She passed away in 2004. I moved here to Virginia to live closer to my daughter after 30 years in the abusive casino industry. I felt like I was at the end of my limit of giving and doing and had no more to give. But I slowly but surely started to get back on my feet.

Today, I have a good job and want to keep it, I don't want my looks to spoil it and cost me my job. But most of all my self esteem and my heart are hurting and yearning for help so that I am sending out this SOS for help. I don't have a great dental plan to help cover for dentures or the dental work itself. It is definitely still too expensive for me and I am living alone and I take care of myself. I don't have a lot and don't own anything. I have nothing to sell, pawn or hope for. I don't have a savings. I am living from paycheck to paycheck. I don't owe, I have just enough to take care of my apt, auto loan and auto insurance, utility bills. I don't go out so I don't spend any money. It's work and back home. I work 12 hour shifts Monday thru Friday. I have been diagnosed with an enlarged heart and high blood pressure, so I do spend extra each month for my medicine. I don't mean to sound so moany like a "DEAR HEART", but I have lost my self respect and I have no where else to turn so when I came across this, I figured I have nothing else to lose.

Victoria Nortez
Ashburn, VA

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