Meet Our Second Chance Recipients, Misty Hulstein and Taner Reister!
Misty and Taner Tell Us About Their Dental Health
Misty: I am missing nine or ten teeth on the top of my mouth and five on the bottom. The remaining teeth on the top of my mouth are in very bad shape, and the remaining teeth on the bottom of my mouth have cavities. I have always put the health of my husband, who is disabled, and my children first, which has left little time for my own dental health. Over time, the condition of mouth has worsened because we cannot afford dental insurance.
Taner: I have numerous broken teeth. I had a number of cavities when I was a child and teenager that were filled. In the fall of 2010, I started to have trouble with the fillings. I was about to become a student at the time and could not afford dental work. Fall of 2011, the first filling broke out. My wife and I were expecting our son at the time, and my financial situation was even worse. Five years later, almost all of the fillings have broken out, along with the teeth they were in. This has exacerbated my overall dental health. Not brushing as much due to pain caused many more cavities and things have spiraled out of control.
Misty and Taner Tell Us Why Restoring Their Oral Health Is Important to Them
Misty: I just have a hard time smiling a lot. My self-esteem is low, and people at work ask me why my teeth are the way they are. It hurts — it hurts a lot. I think it would be amazing to be chosen as a recipient for the Second Chance program. It would be awesome. I want to be able to smile in pictures with my children and not be ashamed to smile at work. If I could smile again, I would feel like I could have my life back.
Taner: I’m 28 years old. I have most of my life ahead of me. I’ve always been a person who smiles constantly. I’m a naturally happy and friendly person with a wide, open-mouthed laugh. I wish I could say that was in the past. I’m not able to stop smiling most of the time and want to be remembered for a bright smile, not because of bad teeth. I am a social person, and my smile affects my personal and professional life. I am a father of a wonderful 3-year-old son about to go to preschool. I will be active in his schooling, leading to interactions with teachers and other parents. I am returning to SDSU to pursue a degree in English. Not only does this mean classes and talking with other students and professors, but I will be a teacher afterward. I do not look forward to students seeing my current smile. Finally, I am part of a small non-profit organization that runs events for area teenagers and young adults. I currently try very hard to not smile at events full of people having fun. It’s incredibly difficult to not fully enjoy myself. Beyond that, I deal with people constantly as part of my duties and don’t want my smile to affect what people think of the organization. My smile used to beam. I used to be so proud of it. One of my greatest desires is to recapture that.
Misty and Taner Tell Us Why They Are Good Candidates for the Second Chance Program
Misty: All of my teeth on the top are missing or are badly decaying. I’ve had infection where my face would swell up, and I’d have to go to work with an ice pack on my face. It made me sick and tired a lot, taking time away from my family. I have a hard time eating different foods, and I feel very ashamed to smile in pictures with my kids because of my teeth. I can’t afford to go to the dentist. I’m a mom of two kids, and my husband is a double amputee with lots of medical problems, so we live paycheck to paycheck, and I always put them first.
Taner: I am currently postponing school until spring so that I can afford to get dentures. In the past, tooth infection has stopped me from going to classes and is a large part of me exiting the Med/Fire Rescue program at LATI. If I cannot afford them by then, I may have to postpone again. I am also afraid of the amount of bone reduction I will have over the next 40 plus years. This program will allow me to avoid these issues and allow me to flourish as I build my life and raise my son.
If you or someone you know is interested in donating other services to the Second Chance program to help the recipients improve their lives, please click here for more information.