When I was in college, I told my roommates that I wanted dentures. This bizarre statement followed weeks and months of making frequent trips home to Westchester to undergo what seemed like a never-ending list of dental procedures. There was the root canal that was topped off with a new crown; the same root canal soon got infected, the new crown had to be removed, and everything started all over again. It went on and on. With each infection came plenty of pain, a round of antibiotics, and a big bill (thanks Mom, for taking care of that part). “Why do I have to deal with this?” I lamented to my dentist. “Just take them all out. It’s not like it’s my heart. Put fakes ones in, and we’ll be done with it.”
Even though I was only in my early 20s, I had already spent a lot of time in the dental chair. Almost all of my adult teeth had came in damaged and discolored, due to what doctors believe was probably an overdose of antibiotics. So I had porcelain veneers, caps aplenty, teeth removed, braces — the whole nine yards. By the time I was an adult, I had a beautiful smile (if I do say so myself). Still, I didn’t want to deal with it anymore. Luckily, my very kind, patient (and mighty cute) dentist took the time to explain why I definitely did not want dentures, and how important dental health was to my overall well-being. For the first time, he explained in painstaking detail what all the procedures were really about and why they were important. I had to admit — although begrudgingly — that it was quite interesting.
Recently, I’ve begun brushing my one-year-old’s teeth. She is surprisingly amenable to this. Although it is mostly an aw-shucks, isn’t-she-cute kind of moment, I hope she will develop a lifelong appreciation of the importance of good dental health. And I’m more interested than ever in reading about the latest dental techniques and procedures. Implants instead of bridges, longer lasting veneers, and (perhaps most shocking of all) no more metal mouth, as the field of orthodontia moves ahead in leaps and bounds. (I must say, though, that I’m unsure how I feel about a retainer with a picture of the Jonas Brothers on it). To help you choose the best dentist for yourself and your family, check out our cover story on the region’s 220 Top Dentists. I’m sure that one of them is right for you.
Of course, November means Thanksgiving — my favorite holiday of all. This year, we offer tips on making the most of your turkey — how to carve it correctly and enhance it with imaginative side dishes — as well as some alternative ways to spend the day in this region. Gobble up the latest information here. You also won’t want to miss the “Secrets of the CIA.” No, not that CIA; we’re talking about our very own Culinary Institute of America. While everyone knows that it is the crème de la crème of cooking schools, we bet there is a whole lot more about this Valley landmark that you probably don’t know. So read on.
Olivia J. Abel
Editor In Chief