Photo by Dani Wilson
Dr. Renata Regalado of Smile Center Orthodontics in Glen Carbon says one of her main goals is to stress the importance of health and dental care and hygiene as a huge part of life and for overall well-being.
Orthodontic care is not just putting braces on and taking them off — not for Dr. Renata Regalado of Smile Center Orthodontics in Glen Carbon.
Regalado tries to make it known that orthodontia and dental care are not just events, they are a lifestyle … and she leads by example.
Regalado is, in her words, “Homegrown, despite the fact that I came from a different country.”
Originally from Poland, she graduated from Alton High School and attended Southern Illinois University Edwardsville for her undergraduate work. She opened Smile Center about seven years ago and has worked to provide affordable, effective and advanced care for her patients — from the youngest to the oldest.
One of Regalado’s more non-traditional methods is early treatment. She says she is quite passionate about it and will begin orthodontic care as early as 7 or 8. Regalado says bigger and more complicated problems can be repaired and corrected before “grown-up” teeth have even grown in, so “why not treat them early?” She points out that the American Association of Orthodontists also encourages early checkups for children.
Smile Center reflects another of Regalado’s passions.
“I just love technology,” she says.
A huge advancement for Smile Center is a three-dimensional X-ray machine that can see teeth from every angle, even before they grow. Regalado says this can save teeth from undue extraction. Smile Center also has done away with traditional impressions (many former orthodontia recipients remember the mouthfuls of putty that went with the territory). Instead, Smile Center has a scanner that creates a digital impression of patients’ teeth, eliminating the need for traditional impressions. Regalado says the technology is an important part of Smile Center.
She says one of her main goals is to stress the importance of health and dental care and hygiene as a huge part of life and for overall well-being. She tries to do this predominantly by letting Smile Center stay involved in patients’ lives in more ways than just orthodontia. Smile Center publishes a newsletter outlining new technologies as well as explaining long-standing orthodontic appliances — recent articles explained rubber bands and headgear. It also provides incentives for patients who comply successfully with treatment, mostly in the form of “Smile Dollars,” a type of tender used to earn prizes in the office.
Through the referral program, patients who refer friends can earn prizes as well. Incentives are even offered to those who get good grades — patients can earn Smile Dollars by bringing in report cards.
“We try to make it fun,” Regalado says.
Affordability is a factor, as well, with free consultations and prices for dental work surprising for many clients who think the industry is expensive.
Regalado says orthodontic care is important to every part of life, and wants to tell the rest of the world what she says to her patients — “You wear that smile every day!”
For information, call (618) 288-7000.