Thank you so much for joining us! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?
I was interested in a career that involved working with children and families where I could grow with them. As dentists, we often get to see our patients a couple times per year. We get to watch families grow; and we can become invested in their lives. Also, I love having the ability to influence the before and after of patients. There is nothing like a patient walking into our offices with years of neglect, low self-esteem, and hopelessness stemming from a less than ideal smile and walking out with a new outlook on life. I am energized from making something that was once thought impossible, possible. Continuing, traditionally the layman, especially minorities, are not properly educated on the mouth-body connection. I want to instill in those I encounter how our oral health influences our overall health and the scientifically proven links between what’s going on inside our mouths to some of the most common illnesses we face.
Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started doing this?
Every day is a different rush. There is magic in cosmetic and rehabilitative dentistry is the face on patients when they see the “after.” We literally have the unique ability to correct lifelong issues in days.
Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?
One of my biggest challenges was addressing the “how old are you and how long have you been practicing questions” from patients. It’s understandable that some patients are already fearful of the dentist and become more apprehensive when they visit a seemingly very young dentist. It’s important to be confident when speaking to patients and take the time to connect with them and help them feel at ease. I learned quickly that to come across as confident to patients, I needed to first be competent. This propelled me to not only to ensure I’m continuously learning in this field… but also teaching both at dental schools nationally and through my social media connections. I am continuously driven to learn and grow in my career. I look at dentists who have better skills than I do and think, “If they can do it, so can I. How can I learn what they know? Finally, I find it easier to sleep every night when I am committed to treating every patient like I’d treat my mother.
I’ve also struggled with the concept of work/life balance. I have tendencies toward workaholism as many of us do. It has been vital to my success to focus on understanding how this can impact personal relationships and be more mindful of maintaining a healthy balance.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story?
How have you used your success to bring goodness to the world?
One of the greatest benefits of ownership is the ability to dictate how I serve those I serve. As both a practicing clinician and owner of my practice; I have the flexibility to deliver top-notch dentistry to those who may not otherwise be able to receive it elsewhere. Our profession needs a restoration of truth and transparency to help our patients understand their oral health care. As a business owner, I am placed in a position of authority to be an advocate and educator of the oral-systemic connection to my patients and the global community.
Do you have a favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share a story of how that was relevant to you in your life?
The Bible says, “if anyone would be first, he must be last of all and servant of all. I want it to be clear that I served God, through service to His people. Even in my absence, the lasting smiles that I have helped create shall last. Through dentistry, I hope that each patient I serve leaves with better overall oral, physical, and mental health. My legacy shall live through those I inspired to be more caring, compassionate, and competent healthcare professionals.
How can our readers follow you on social media?