As many of you know, the NFED is an organization that is VERY near to my heart. As one of the founding members of the NFED, I have often thought about what mine and my sister’s childhoods would have been like if my Mom didn’t have the support and resources offered by this organization.
The NFED is the only organization in the US dedicated to serving individuals affected by ED. The NFED has partnered with Dental Treatment Centers across the nation to provide much needed dental care to affected individuals, like my son. Because the ED syndromes are rare, Dental Treatment Centers play key roles both in treatment of patients with exceptional needs and in providing critical education and experience for dental professionals and students.
As a past recipient of the Treatment Fund of the NFED, I know first hand how important dental care is for affected individuals. I was born with only six permanent teeth buds, two of which I have remaining. As a child, I had to have my baby teeth crowned as soon as they erupted, in order to try to preserve them as long as possible. I started wearing dentures when I was ten years old.
My sister, who is also affected by Ectodermal Dysplasia, started wearing dentures at an even younger age.
When we were in our teen years, we flew out to the National Institutes of Health to see if we qualified for an investigational dental implant program, aimed at providing nearly normal dentition for affected youngsters. My sister, who had even fewer teeth than I did, qualified for the program and underwent an extensive process of getting dental implants in her lower jaw. I did not qualify for the program, because at the time I had one tooth in each quadrant of my mouth (in order to qualify, candidates had to have at least two quadrants that were void of teeth).
Although I never received the dental implants, like my sister, it is something that I hope to do sometime in the future. Now that I have only two teeth, I am a better candidate for the procedure.
U.S. Bank has a Make It Happen contest that recently launched. I entered the contest and listed the NFED as the recipient charity should I win. I would love it if you would take a moment out of your day to vote. The funds would go a long way toward providing much needed dental care to affected individuals.
You can Vote For My Entry Here!