A woman who’d “never had an ounce of luck in her life” couldn’t believe it when a dentist in Turkey offered to transform her “wheelie bin teeth” into a perfect smile for free.
Mum-of-one Paige Griffin had been bullied about her stained teeth ever since she was a child and the torments carried on into adulthood, with trolls on TikTok nicknaming them “wheelie bin teeth”.
The 26-year-old visited various dentists to try and fix the issue but they couldn’t find what was causing the issue, reports The Liverpool Echo. The problem affected her confidence and she struggled to work as a sales consultant as she didn’t want to show her teeth.
She said: “For years, people said I had wheelie bin teeth – because I had one black, one brown and one green. I just wanted to be loved and liked, and my teeth prevented me from finding love and friendships.
“I was tormented and resented myself.” Some sympathetic TikTok followers suggested she set up a GoFundMe page for dental support and Paige successfully raised £400 but it wasn’t enough.
She had almost given up hope when she received a message in May this year from a dentist in Turkey called SmileDental, who offered to give her a new set of crowns and porcelain veneers for free. She flew over for the life-changing surgery with her partner, Rhys, 21, an ex-army officer and drainage engineer, on May 31 – where she also had nine fillings and two teeth taken out.
Despite being reluctant at first, thinking it was a scam, she soon felt confident enough to accept the offer after checking their 69.7k Instagram following and realising it was legitimate. Paige was told the entire cost was around £5,030 but “she didn’t need to worry about a thing”.
She said: “I never thought that I would ever be able to afford such an expensive surgery. I was shocked by how much the whole procedure would’ve cost.”
The Turkish dentists told Paige that the real cause of the stained teeth was gum disease, which had been neglected by Paige’s previous dentists. She is now overjoyed with the results and said she is finally able to smile with confidence for the first time in her life.
The stay-at-home mum, from Walsall, Birmingham, said: “I was blown away that a stranger could offer such kindness. I feel like I’ve finally got my smile back. I’ve refused to smile with my teeth on show my whole life but now I can’t stop beaming.
“I’ve never had a single ounce of good luck, so at first, I didn’t believe them when they reached out it’s completely changed my life.”
Paige returned home on June 8 – and surprised her followers on TikTok live with her new smile. She said: “For the first time, the haters were drowned out by positive support and compliments. I never thought I could be considered ‘beautiful’ and now I am.”
“I can smile at strangers in Tesco with confidence. I can take photos and smile with my son for the first time.”
Smile Dental’s senior patient coordinator Hasan Sarıtekelir described the experience as “incredible” for both Paige and the staff at the dental practice. He said they really empathised with her and wanted to give her a wonderful smile.