Waco dentist gives 75-year-old father a new smile decades in the making

Waco dentist Chad Latino
Waco dentist Chad Latino
Published: Feb. 28, 2023 at 6:27 PM CST
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WACO, Texas (KWTX) - A local dentist has just finished giving a new smile to a pretty memorable patient; his 75-year-old dad who says it’s something he’s longed for more than six decades.

Dr. Chad Latino, of Waco, has fixed the smiles of hundreds of patients in his 23 years of dentistry, but admits recreating a smile for his father, Charles, of Lumberton, was one of the most special.

“It was really cool to see him with a new smile at this age,” Latino said. “He’s been waiting 50 or 60 years.”

But Latino didn’t know of his dad’s dislike for the appearance of his teeth until just a couple of years ago.

Chad has been his dad’s dentist for years, but only recently did Charles tell Chad of a secret he’d kept from his dentist son for years.

“He said ‘when I was 15, I asked my mom to take me to the dentist to fix my smile, but we just couldn’t afford to do it,” Chad recalled. “So, I never knew that it meant that much to him.”

Chad immediately went to work, first fitting his father for Invisalign, an alternative to wire braces that uses transparent, incremental aligners to adjust teeth.

Once he got the teeth perfectly straight, Dr. Latino put on crowns to improve the appearance of his father’s teeth.

The results were life changing for the man who has photographed all his life with a closed-lipped smile.

“After 60 years, my son gave me the gift of a new smile. Fixing my teeth,” Charles said with a big grin showcasing his teeth.

Chad says his dad has had such an huge and positive impact on his life, it’s been nice to return the favor in a small way.

“To have the ability to give something back to him that can have a positive impact on his life and can help him from this day forward have a better outlook on life and smile bigger, it’s a great honor,” Chad said.

“Thank you, son, for my new smile,” his dad added. " You’ll never know how much this means to me.”