Actor Gaten Matarazzo has had a lifelong battle with Cleidocranial Dysplasia (CCD). However, he faces the condition head-on and also spreads awareness and encouragement for others living with the same.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services informs that common effects of the condition are dental abnormalities, underdeveloped or absent collarbones, and delayed closing of the spaces between the skull bones. Although there is no specific treatment for CCD, dental work and surgeries can help manage it.
American actor Gaetano Matarazzo is best known for playing Dustin Henderson in the Netflix sci-fi-horror drama series Stranger Things.
He made his acting debut on the Broadway stage as Benjamin in Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, and Gavroche in Les Misérables.
Gaten Matarazzo Cleidocranial Dysplasia, But Is He Sick Now? Health Update 2022
Gaten Matarazzo was born with cleidocranial dysplasia (CCD) – a genetic condition affecting the growth of teeth and bones. People with CCD might have bones formed differently, more fragile, or sometimes absent collarbones, like in the case of Gaten.
20-year-old Gaten lives with the rare condition, which can happen in one in a million births.
After Gaten was cast as Dustin Henderson in Stranger Things, the show’s creators modified the character’s background to have CCD. Like Gaten, Dustin did not properly grow adult teeth because of CCD.
The actor is open about his condition and uses his platform to raise awareness. He is an ambassador to help those with the condition feel less alone.
He also fundraises for CCD Smiles, an organization established to help cover the costs of oral surgeries for people with CCD. Additionally, it provides education, events, and real-life stories from CCD-affected people like Gaten.
Gaten explained what he loved about CCD Smiles was that it provided a space where people with this condition could join and share their stories with many others dealing with the same thing. He hates the thought of feeling alone and wishes everyone to feel comfortable.
Gaten once shared how comfortable he is with himself, saying that he never felt different from anyone else throughout his childhood. He was lucky enough to have supportive family who helped him embrace his condition and feel confident. He also wished every kid growing up with CCD gets the same environment.
The Honor Society actor has always been outspoken about his health journey. For instance, he has posted on Instagram about multiple surgeries he has undergone for CCD. He explains that he “didn’t know what to expect” by sharing the details but hoped it would raise awareness.
Gaten Matarazzo Comes From An Italian-American Family
Gaten Matarazzo was born Gaetano John Matarazzo III to his parents, Gaten Matarazzo Sr. and Heather Matarazzo. People often wrongly assert that his mother is the Princess Diaries actress Heather Matarazzo.
Actress Heather once took to TikTok to dismiss the fan theory, saying she adores Gaten, but he’s not her son. She was full of praise for the Stranger Things actor but shared that she only has “four-legged babies,” i.e., pets.
Gaten was born in New London, Connecticut, and raised in Little Egg Harbor Township, New Jersey.
The American actor of Italian descent has an older sister, Sabrina Matarazzo, and a younger brother, Carmen Matarazzo. Sabrina is also an actress known for The Americans (2013), Major Key (2018), and Beyond Kepler (2018), whereas Carmen is a drummer and musician.