From the moment I helped my very first patient improve their already beautiful smile, I loved being a hygienist. I enjoyed helping people, I loved working in the complex and amazing human mouth, and I loved the dental office environment. I worked for the same general dentist for nine and a half years.
After that much time around dentists, it was only natural that my path would lead me to become a dentist. In the time-honored tradition of apprenticeship, I absorbed the knowledge of the trade that can’t be bought in a university alone. All those hours hearing dentists discuss the best approaches to a complex oral health problem and hearing those same dentists speak with patients and seeing the patients’ faces light up brought a depth of passion you can’t glean from a textbook.
Embarking upon my dental journey, I knew I would thoroughly enjoy it, but I never dreamed that dentistry would have so many opportunities for advanced learning and training in a myriad of areas.
The mystery and challenge of surgery and root canal therapies became enormously fascinating to me. There is nothing more deeply rewarding than bringing healing and restoration to such a visible and emotive part of someone’s personality, not to mention the effect oral health has on overall health. And more recently, regenerative procedures have become my obsession. We are accomplishing something in the scientific world of dentistry that, until recently, was thought to be impossible. With the ever-changing miracle of new technology, dental procedures are constantly becoming better than they were yesterday.
My dental passion is driven by both my love of new thoughts and my drive for improving my skills, so I can help my patients more. Technology will continue to advance, and materials will continue to make results easier and more naturally beautiful, but technology can do nothing on its own. It needs passionate, committed, intelligent dentists to be doctors, scientists, and artists—compassionate dentists who know how to use technology can change people’s lives for the better—to affect real change.
I embarked into the invisible braces field, so I could provide a better service in my office for the patients who preferred to stay within my care. They were so used to my complete approach, they would say, “Can’t you straighten my teeth?” They trusted me and did not want to go elsewhere. They liked the one-stop shop I provided.
One of the problems I experienced early on with other orthodontists was they were not cosmetic dentists. People would often show up in the office with a reverse front smile. This meant the cuspids hung down further than the front teeth, giving them a bit of a vampire look. Functionally, it worked; it just wasn’t very attractive.
Invisible aligners helped get this right. I also felt these aligners made home care much easier than traditional braces. Patients could take them out and clean their mouth much easier, resulting in less tooth and gum breakdown.
When I practice dentistry, it is from a place of love and enjoyment for the process and addressing my patient’s needs. There is dentistry that is beautiful and dentistry that is functional. It is the marriage of these two that creates miracles and will give the longest lasting and most satisfying experience for the patient when done in a caring and safe environment. I call this “The Sophisticated Approach.”
What characterizes The Sophisticated Approach is long-term practical experience, a great team, and the hard-earned knowledge of many hours and years of dedicated continued education.
As a dentist that has stayed in practice for 30 years (with 60-100 hours of education per year), and has 13 prior years of dental hygiene experience, including two years of research at the University of Florida during dental school, I can offer my patients a comprehensive, sophisticated dentistry experience few other dentists can. I’m proud to offer this dentistry to the residents of South Tampa, Florida, and beyond.
I am always reminded of what one of my favorite 90-year-old patients, Mary, said to me years ago. “There are many ways to get to the post office,” a quip with so many applications. It is nice for my patients to be able to engage with a dentist who can offer a variety of solutions to many of the challenges they may face, either physically, financially, or both. That is also part of my Sophisticated Approach. It separates me from other dentists and makes my practice and my patients’ experiences unique.
It is truly my pleasure (and my staff’s pleasure as well) to help my patients. We want to give them a positive, long-lasting dental outcome while getting to know them on a personal level.
As a practice owner, dentist, and entrepreneur, it is also so important for me to be involved in my community. I volunteer my time and expertise at the Children’s Museum, the Dacco Opioid Nonprofit, the Straz Center for the Performing Arts, Gulf Coast Outreach, Academy Pre Education for the Underprivileged, Womenade of Tampa, and the 100 Women in Tampa charitable group. It’s my privilege and priority to help people with the gifts and tools I’ve been given.