No Reservations

Quality care, pleasing results help dentist earn inherited patient’s trust.

For regular business travelers and occasional vacationers alike, finding just the right hotel room for just the right price can sometimes be a difficult process. Michael Burrock is in the business of making that process a little easier.

Michael’s photo by Jordan Pysz.

Michael Burrock

Michael develops hotel reservation software programs, and over the years, the three start-up companies he’s either owned or been a partner in have been associated with some of the world’s best-known hotel chains.
“Right now, we’re working mostly with Motel 6 and Best Western®, but we’ve also worked with Sandals®, Wyndham® and Westin® hotels,” says Michael, who stands out from the majority of his fellow software developers for one very specific reason.
At 74, Michael is nearly 50 years older than the average software developer. He’s very active and health-conscious, and as a result, the Bokeelia resident says he neither feels like he’s 74 nor looks like he’s 74.
“I don’t mean to be boastful, but I don’t look my age,” says Michael, who willingly gives a lot of the credit for his more youthful appearance to the dentist who has spent the past couple years shaping his youthful-looking smile.
That dentist is Katrine A. Farag, DMD, who inherited Michael as a patient when she took over a previous practice and opened Advanced Dentistry of Fort Myers. Michael says Dr. Farag made the transition from his previous dentist a breeze.
“I have to admit, I had some concerns about having to transition to a new dentist because I was very happy with my old one,” Michael explains. “But I was immediately comfortable with Dr. Farag. She’s very personable, knowledgeable and thorough.”

Getting to Know You

Dr. Farag first began treating Michael in 2016, and over time, she eventually earned Michael’s trust, first by doing the follow-up work for a laser gum treatment that was performed by his previous dentist and then by doing some general maintenance work.
“We followed up on his gums to make sure they stay healthy so that he would not need the surgery again, and did a filling on one tooth, a filling on a smaller tooth and some minor things on a tooth that had cracked,” Dr. Farag recalls.
“All along, though, his lower front teeth were very misaligned and not really in great shape. It was something he had put off taking care of for a long time, even with the previous doctor, and it was affecting his smile.”
It wasn’t just Michael’s smile that was impacted by the problems he had with his lower front teeth. His ability to eat was eventually affected as well when one of those teeth became loose and the area around it very painful.
It was about that time that Michael was making a new commitment to proper oral health, so he decided once and for all to have his bottom teeth repaired. Having long since developed a great degree of trust in Dr. Farag, he turned to her to do the work.
“One of the things I really like about Dr. Farag is that before she does any work for you, she always does a great job of explaining all your options and what the pros and cons are of each choice,” Michael exudes. “She, of course, did that in this case as well.
“And what she told me was that because both of the lower front teeth were infected, it made the most sense to pull the front teeth and replace them with a bridge because the bridge would be more structurally sound and have a much better appearance.”

A Perfect Match

Confident that Dr. Farag’s recommendation would enhance both his oral health and his appearance, Michael agreed to have Dr. Farag pull his lower two front teeth and fit him for a permanently fixed bridge.
The time required for the gums to heal after two infected teeth are pulled is about eight weeks. Michael was given a temporary bridge to wear during that time and was fit for the permanent bridge in July.
“The bridge we gave him is completely fixed,” Dr. Farag says. “It’s firmly cemented and anchored to other, healthier teeth, and one of the great things about it is that it’s made of ceramic, which allows us to be in control in a way that lets us align everything perfectly.
“Now, he has perfectly straight lower teeth. To look at Michael, you would never know how crooked his real teeth were. What I’m happiest about, though, is that he’s happy to have that look, because I know he was unhappy with that crooked smile.”
Ecstatic might be a better way to describe how Michael feels about the new look of his lower front teeth. He says the new bridge fits perfectly, has alleviated any eating problems he was having and has greatly enhanced his confidence.
“Dr. Farag did an excellent job,” Michael enthuses. “The procedure wasn’t painful at all, and I’m no longer having any pain or discomfort when I’m chewing. A number of people have told me how great my teeth look now.”
Michael was so pleased with the work Dr. Farag did to improve the health and appearance of his lower teeth that he recently returned to have her do some aesthetic work on his two upper front teeth as well.
“I call those my bunny teeth, and they’re sound structurally; there was nothing wrong there,” Michael explains. “But one was a little discolored and the other one was a little worse than that, so I asked her what could be done about it.”
Dr. Farag determined that capping the two front teeth would be the best option for Michael, who agreed with her assessment. As part of that process, Dr. Farag also matches the color of the patient’s other teeth so they are aesthetically perfect.
“We have a variety of different shades to choose from, and it’s mostly a judgment call we make in making that match,” Dr. Farag informs. “Sometimes, we even step outside to see what the teeth look like in natural light to make sure we’re getting it right.
“Then, once I think I’m pretty close with the match, I let the patient try them, just to make sure they love the color before they’re married to them with permanent cement.”
Michael says he couldn’t be happier with the results of Dr. Farag’s work. Not only did she improve his oral health, but she gave him the aesthetically pleasing smile he’s always wanted. He adds that he would recommend her to anyone looking for a dentist.
“She’s a very happy, upbeat person, and the office is a comfortable place to go to where everyone is very positive,” Michael says. “And as far as her work goes, she’s very diligent and an absolute perfectionist. Everything has to be exactly right.
“She always does what’s necessary to make you feel comfortable and not experience any pain or discomfort. She’s very considerate, very much in tune with her patients that way, so I would suggest that anybody who has any anxiety about going to the dentist go see Dr. Farag. She has a way of taking all of your anxiety away and making everything very easy.”

Bridging the Gap

Growing up, Billie “B.J.” Bowser never liked losing a tooth and waiting for a new one to grow in the way most other kids her age did.
“I can remember losing teeth, and the adult teeth would never appear,” B.J. recalls. “I always had gaps in my smile. It was awful growing up with that. I have my two adult front teeth, but the ones on the sides of those never grew in.

 Billie’s photo by Fred Bellet.

B.J. has confidence in her smile.

“I always had gaps there as a young child and pre-teen. I hated having my picture taken, and it was really tough growing up with that. You really have no idea how your smile impacts your life.
“I’ve seen dental specialists since I was fifteen years old. I got my first bridge at that age. I had three others since then, and none of those were ever a natural, perfect fit.”
Working in the health care field, B.J.’s job requires public speaking engagements. In recent years, she had become embarrassed by how her teeth looked.
“I always had a great smile when I was a child, but once I lost my baby teeth, my smile was never the same. I was uncomfortable every time I opened my mouth,” she shares. “The teeth weren’t the right shape or color, and my bite was off. It never felt like me. I could never find a dentist who took the time and put forth the effort to do
the work the right way.”
B.J. and her husband are licensed foster parents. The couple recently adopted two children they were fostering and have become a family. Knowing that she will now be a part of a lot of family portraits, B.J. recently decided to correct her smile so that it matches the level of confidence she now has in her life.
“When I started out, I had no idea where to turn to find a skilled dentist who could permanently fix my issue once and for all,” B.J. relays. “But then I read an article about Dr. Farag in Florida Health Care News and thought, If she can help that person, I think she can help me, too.

Better Appearance and Function

“When I met with B.J. initially and examined her mouth, the first thing that struck me was that her bite was off,” Dr. Farag shares. “The reason her bite was off was because the existing bridgework was not made properly.
“The shapes of the teeth were too rounded and did not match her face cosmetically. The size and color of the teeth were also not flattering for her. B.J. is forty years old, and she’s been living with this for years.
“She is much too young not to be happy and to be self-conscious about her smile. I wanted to restore the confidence she’d lost. The bridge she had obviously needed to be replaced, not just for aesthetic reasons, but because it did not fit properly in her mouth.”
Dr. Farag recommended creating a new, six-unit bridge to attach to the adjoining teeth. She started that process by taking a full set of x-rays and made models of B.J.’s existing bridge to send to the lab for a mock-up of the improved look. Prior to the models being sent to the lab, Dr. Farag and B.J. also chose the shape and color of the teeth for the new bridge.
“B.J. did not want her smile to look fake or unnatural, so we chose the shade and size carefully,” Dr. Farag explains. “I always involve my patients with their dental health. I never make a decision for someone without them being part of the process. After all, it’s their smile.”
The entire process, from start to finish, was completed in three visits.
“I had the temporary bridge in before the permanent bridge was completed, and that temporary provided me the perfect outlook toward the final product,” B.J. enthuses. “I was so excited!”
Now that the final bridge has been placed, B.J. is ecstatic over the look and feel of her permanent bridge. She is grateful to Dr. Farag for her expertise and chairside manner.
“Dr. Farag was amazing from the moment I sat in the dental chair,” B.J. raves. “She listened to my concerns, and we worked together to come up with a solution. It’s a dental partnership because she involved me in the entire process.”
B.J. says her new smile has given her a newfound confidence she has never had before.
“Once I had the permanent fixture placed, I could not believe how it looked,” she adds. “It is amazing to me. I can go to a restaurant and order anything I want and not worry about my bite or about chewing anything. I feel one hundred percent confident again, thanks to Dr. Farag!”

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    • Advanced Dentistry of Fort Myers

      Dr. Farag looks forward to hearing from readers of Florida Health Care News. Their office is conveniently located  at 16601 San Carlos Blvd. in Fort Myers. For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call (239) 466-3131.... Read More

    • Katrine A. Farag, DMD

      Katrine A. Farag, DMD, earned her Doctor of Dental Medicine degree from Nova Southeastern University after completing her undergraduate studies in neuroscience at Vanderbilt University. She is a member of the Florida Academy of Cosmetic D... Read More

    • Joseph H. Farag, DMD

      Joseph H. Farag, DMD, earned his Doctor of Dental Medicine degree from the University of Florida College of Dentistry, Gainesville, FL after completing his undergraduate degree at Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, FL. Dr. Farag served an... Read More