Today we’d like to introduce you to Chandler Austin White.
Hi Chandler Austin, please kick things off for us with an introduction to yourself and your story.
I was 20 years old, the year was 2012 and I had just decided to straighten my teeth after always hiding my teeth as best I could when laughing or smiling. After a year + with Invisalign. I had MY smile. It was life-changing, I felt called to do my best to provide that feeling for anyone else who wanted it. I began hanging out with my dentist when I wasn’t working or in class. Just listening and taking notes. I fell in love with the dental field. I decided to change my choice of study in school. I went to trade school got the certifications required to work in an office hands-on.
I worked in a few offices learning my routines and growing hands-on in the field. Until I found what felt like a “home” to work at this time. An office I’d be at for a handful of years. This office was also 150 miles round trip for me 6 days a week. I didn’t mind, I rode a motorcycle & I loved my patients and the people I worked and grew with. I also began going back to school near where I lived for two days a week to pursue my bachelor’s degree to advance in my career. The days I would have class, I would leave work 2 hours early.
On Thursday May 24th, 2018 while riding my motorcycle home to get ready to take a final for speech class. A young man in a rush to get where ever he was going crossed over the double yellow lines to get into the carpool lane where I currently was and was not seen.
My street bike made contact with the rear driver’s side of his car and the impact sent me FLYING over the center divider into oncoming traffic.
My head/helmet made the contact first. Breaking my jaw and smashing bones around my nose and eyes. My right forearm was shattered.
A month and a half later, I was dismissed from the emergency room 75lbs lighter with nine new titanium implants in between face and arm. Same way Kanye West had his jaw wired shut. I did as well. My diet was only fluids I could drink through my teeth. And being in the dental field and not able to floss all that time was heartbreaking 💔 😢. My teeth had shifted back to where they were before my year + Invisalign investment. Also because of the head impact my frontal lobe was damaged some causing traumatic brain injuries. Also known as TBI. I became very forgetful. Names were a guessing game and I used to dream every night before the accident. It was different now with TBI.
I was still alive! I became so determined to be better than who I was prior to the accident.
I started with a haircut. Then physical therapy and counseling. The first few months while my face and body were healing and my weight was slowly coming back now that I could eat. I’d receive looks or expressions from people I knew before the accident. That way, I knew my changes were visible. I did my Invisalign over again. Getting my smile and confidence back some. And I went back to work. 2020 was tuff because my right arm was still healing with the titanium. It was difficult to use dental instruments with that hand.
I remember at times being grateful masks were mandatory due to covid because I was more comfortable hiding under mine it felt like.
Nonetheless, I was grateful to still be alive and determined to take advantage of it. I’ve learned routines are key for my success.
I’ve continued going to school, I no longer receive weird looks or glances. I’m better in the dental field than ever before and only continue to grow.
Anytime I’ve told my story and been asked how it is I’m still here. My answer is and will always be the same.
Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
I had to become ambidextrous in my line of work. I needed both hands to properly be effective.
As you know, we’re big fans of Pacific View Smile Center. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about the brand?
We specialize in general and cosmetic dentistry.
Readers should know comfort is the most important aspect in anything I’m involved with.
If you’re in my office and uncomfortable, I don’t feel as though I’m doing my job correctly.
Where do you see things going in the next 5-10 years?
The dental field is always growing with technology and upgrades to make our job smoother and patient care easier.
- Website: Pacificviewsmilecenter.com