Help Me Keep My Smile!

For: Holly Gaskin
Organizer: Holly Gaskin
of $25,000 goal.
Raised by 63 donors
50% Complete
This fundraiser is closed. Thank you for your support!

The Story

I am genetically predisposed to periodontal disease. I've struggled with this since my teens... braces, root canals, wisdom teeth removal... gum surgery. Nothing has helped! It's gotten to the point where I need extensive dental surgery ASAP. The latest diagnosis is 60 to 80% bone loss in my lower jaw; 50% in my upper. Had I listened to dentist #1, and had all my teeth extracted, the bones would have shrunk 50% more, leaving me with NOTHING! My new dentist says most of my lower teeth are unsalvagable. The two lower in front have 100% bone loss and are only held in by "bonding"... clear plastic "glue" for lack of a better word that keeps them stuck to the teeth next to them. Roots are exposed and very sensitive. Dr. Panjali will have to do bone grafts, to make implants feasible. I'll then be fitted with prosthethis plastic temporary "teeth" while my mouth heals. THen I'll be ready for the permanent implants. GRAND TOTAL IS $25,180 for the bottom alone!!!!! I feel like I'll never smile again. I'm scared. I want to feel good and have a healthy mouth. And to continue my career talking on the radio!!!!!

Fundraiser Updates

Posted on May 23, 2014 by Holly Gaskin
I am feeling so much better, now that my "permanent" teeth are in place!!! They are not perfect, but at last, I can eat sandwiches and pizza and non-mushy foods! Whether I will be able to get back to radio is a big question, but I am working a little at a "normal" job and I'm no longer considered disabled. My speech is coming along very well. Trying to maintain, and eventually improve, what I have. I have been posting videos on the Photos and Videos page here. Trying to update a latest one. YouTube is acting buggy today.

Thanks for your support... Have a happy and safe Memrial Day weekend!

:) Holly

Posted on May 13, 2014 by Holly Gaskin
The benefit in Clayton was a success. I think we raised about $650. Still waiting to hear the grand total for sure. Thanks to April for organizing the event, to the band Minus Mike for providing great entertainment, to new friends Joedy and Megan, and to EVERYBODY who came out to support me. I have a major procedure scheduled for later this afternoon. Nervous and excited all at once. Whatever happens, at least it is forward momentum. I thank you all for continued prayers. More updates to follow...

Posted on May 8, 2014 by Holly Gaskin
Complications. That's the word of the day. Please continue to pray for me.

Posted on May 5, 2014 by Holly Gaskin
The other day, I got to meet a bunch of really special people. Some of the big-hearted "kids" at the DPAO (Disabled Persons Action Organization) put on a bowl-a-thon for me at Seaway Lanes. Terri is the lady who contacted me about it and she told me more than once, "it's not gonna be a whole lot of money." But they raised (drum roll, please)... over $700 for me!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am humbled, touched, and utterly blown away. Those wonderful folks treated me like I was a superstar when I showed up to meet them. Lots of smiles, handshakes and hugs all around! The "best-est" medicine of all = LOVE!!!!

Posted on April 23, 2014 by Holly Gaskin
Went to Dr. Panjali's yesterday. Great news... The wax "try-on" looked and fit great! So it has been sent back to the lab, and the permanent piece should arrive in 7-10 business days! Then it's just a matter of making another appointment and having the thing installed. Then I gotta get used to talking and eating with it. I will be posting a new video here, as well as updates on 2 more benefits! Thanks for following my story!

Posted on April 17, 2014 by Holly Gaskin
My next appointment is on Tuesday at 11AM. I will be getting a wax "try-on" to make sure everything is gonna fit. This is because my bite has changed since they took the first impressions, with bone shrinkage and all. They'll send this to the lab right away. I'm not sure if the piece that comes back will be the "immediate denture" (the name is sort of misfitting now) or the permanent "overdenture." Guess I'll find out Tuesday. Meanwhile, I'm in a lot of discomfort with my top teeth. Just a yucky, icky feeling. I can't explain it. Dry mouth all the time, with a bad taste. I think I can talk pretty good, but it's an effort.

I have another benefit coming up on May 10 at the Clayton Boathouse. My friend April is setting that one up. She got the band Minus Mike to play at it. I don't even know the details, LOL! I'll let you know when I know more. :)

Posted on April 9, 2014 by Holly Gaskin
I can't thank everyone enough who came out to support me on Sunday. Whether you volunteered your time, talent, donations or encouragement... or all of the above! I will be grateful to you until the day I die. I am not worthy. I can't believe so many people care about me. I feel so lucky to know you. You boosted my spirits. You give me a reason to hang on. Sometimes I gety so dejected and hopeless. I just of all of YOU and it pulls me through another disappointment, another setback, another minute of a long hard day. You helped me to raise almost $1,700!!!! Thank you, thank you, thank you.

I am continuing to heal. Please keep the prayers coming my way.

Posted on April 1, 2014 by Holly Gaskin
It was a day of disappointment and pain. I went into Sunshine Dental with high hopes of getting a prosthesis inserted. At long last, something to chew solid food with, and to talk clearly with.

It didn't happen.

I have had further bone loss in my jaw, which was expected. That happens after you get extractions. The left side, where I had grafts, has healed very well. Earlier, the doc had wanted to do an implant there, but there simply wasn't enought bone. No that there is, he gave me one today... instead of the prosthesis. Now when I say "implant," I don't mean a thing that looks like a real tooth, that is visible when you smile. It's a "mini-implant," which is basically just a screw. The screws in my mouth (must be five or six all together) will help secure the prosthesis, when I finally get it, which is now not gonna be for another two or three weeks. My mouth is currently sore from the drilling and implantation process. I have stitches again. No hot foods or rinsing my mouth out for a couple of days. I was so looking forward to getting back to work soon!

Thank God for my friend, Hope, who accompanied me to the appointment, and who bought me some ice cream and applesauce at Great American on the way home.

No internet 'til Thursday, because I just moved and Time Warner Cable effed up my order. So, I am typing this at the library.

I want to wake up and find out that this whole day has been a cruel April Fool's joke.

Posted on March 25, 2014 by Holly Gaskin
I am hoping that the TV appearance I did with my friend and event co-organizer, Robin, on Channel 7 News yesterday was seen by a lot of people. We've so much work into everything. I hope that in addition to raisding a lot of money, we also raise lots of AWARENESS about NF!

Posted on March 17, 2014 by Holly Gaskin
I am immensely disappointed. It seems there was a misunderstanding between Dr. Panjali and myself. Apparently it takes 6 weeks for the bone grafts (or any bone in one's body) to heal. So. No prostheses was inserted today. All he did was take out the remaining sutures that hadn't dissolved and the "membrane," which is like a barrier he inserted to keep the gums from growing where the new bone is supposed to grow. Still have nothing down there to chew with. I am SOOOOOO sick of ice cream, mashed potatoes, smoothies and oatmeal!!!!! Very bummed. I am now scheduled to get the temporary "teeth" in on April 1.

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