Community Smiles

A big thank you to all that applied for our community smiles promotion and those that voted. We were overwhelmed with the amount of applications that we received.

Congratulations to our four previous winners:

Jo Sutton, Tania Parker, Dylan Vermaak and Rob Tretheway!


Read their stories below..

Jo Sutton

Community Smiles

Age: 45 years old

"25 years ago I was seriously injured when a vehicle I was a passenger in went through a red light in Takapuna and collided with another vehicle. I suffered an array of injuries including a fractured neck, spine, elbow, ribs and internal injuries which put me into hospital for a couple of months. As well as losing about ¼ of my face I also lost several teeth and a small part of my jaw. I went through years of cutting edge plastic surgery to reconstruct the right hand side of my face and allow me the use of the remaining vision in my right eye.

Fortunately I was young, fit and healthy so after a year or so of rehab I was able to get on with my life, build a career, go on my OE and have 3 beautiful children. I decided long ago not to continue with any more plastic surgery as I am pretty happy in my own skin these days. However, my teeth have been an ongoing problem - teeth damaged in the accident then died and required root canals or extraction, my previously pristine teeth became decayed after extended periods of time on powerful medication and my ill-fitting denture causes mouth ulcers and discomfort (not to mention absolute embarrassment if they pop out while I am chewing on food!)

With 3 kids and a busy life it has been hard to find the money (and time!) to deal with these problems but Northmed’s Community Smiles programme may just give me the chance to fix some of these issues. I’ve always been a person who smiles in the face of adversity but it would be great to feel really good about my smile again!"


Rob Tretheway

Community Smiles

Age: 31 years old

“Hi, my name is Rob Trethewey. I am a father of two gorgeous little girls, Azalea and Kaylee who are the centre of my universe. I live with the love of my life; my fiancé Kylie, our girls and our little old man Rocky dog. Ever since I can remember, every smile in my family (Mum and Dad included) has not been bright, white and unbroken like I see in other families and it’s something I’ve always wanted. Smiling is natural and the easiest way to show happiness, however this is something I’ve struggled with my entire adult life. I am ashamed of my teeth, so smiling doesn’t come easy for me. I would love the opportunity to not have to worry about whose around when I smile. I would love to have the confidence back to show off my smile like I did as a kid. Growing up, there was no money for braces or a higher level of dental care nor the knowledge passed down of how to prevent my teeth from rotting the way that they have. This wasn’t something I prioritized.

I am in pain every day due to my teeth rotting in front of my eyes. I find it hard to sleep, eat and just enjoy normal everyday things with my family because of the pain. I would love to be able to take a nice family photo with all of us smiling, but instead I look like the grumpy dad/partner all the time and it really upsets me. Being a middle class working family, unfortunately, we just don’t have money to spend on fixing my smile. Please help me! PS: If I end up with a nice smile, I promise on everything I will quit smoking, so I don’t risk ruining my new smile.”

To restore Rob’s smile, he will need teeth extractions and dentures made.


Dylan Vermaak

Community Smiles

Age: 28 years old

"My wife nominated me for this awesome competition – I must admit, I was a bit apprehensive - I had visions of my broken, battered smile plastered across billboards for thousands of people to see (and I won’t even let my wife look in my mouth). Growing up, oral care was not a priority in my mum’s house, and I didn’t understand the consequences, until I had grown up. When I brush, floss or even look at my teeth in the mirror I get nervous, worried I may damage my teeth more (it is that scary). My wife has a beautiful set of teeth and we have made it a priority to instill good oral hygiene in our son’s routine. Our 2-year-old, rambunctious toddler loves to floss and brush and we try to make it as fun for him as possible.

My wife says I used to have a great laugh but honestly, I can’t remember, nowadays I keep my laughs low key as I don’t want to scare anyone close by. Winning this competition wouldn’t just improve my confidence, but also change the way a little boy sees his daddy (I’d also be more likely to give my wife's dirty jokes a good belly laugh). Thank you Northmed Dental for giving back to our wonderful community, and I too, will pay it forward."


Community Smiles

Tania Parker

Age: 38 years old

"My name is Tania. For the past 6 years, which should have been the prime of my life, I have struggled with because of my teeth. I am a single mum of two children. My teeth have caused me to shy away from the camera and miss photos with my children which should be life long memories. The state of my teeth makes me avoid conversations because I am ashamed of them. Just two weeks ago came the worst blow. My son telling me he doesn’t want me to meet his friend’s parents because my teeth embarrass him.

This opportunity would mean more than just a smile to me. It would give me my confidence back. The chance to smile without covering my mouth. To not be afraid to laugh with my mouth open! It would be life changing and I would be forever grateful to not have my teeth rule how I live. “Live, smile and laugh” has always been one of my favourite quotes and I’m hoping with your help I can live by it."