We recently caught up with one of our talented dentists at Penn Dental Family Practice. Dr. Alexander Apple is an orthodontist and certified invisible braces provider at our University City practice. He combines art, science, and technology as he works with patients to reach their goals for their smiles. If you have been thinking about straightening your own smile, be sure to come out on July 14, 2017 to meet this Philadelphia invisible braces provider!
PDFP: You have an invisible braces Open House coming up on July 14th. Can you tell me about that?
Dr. Apple: Basically, this is an opportunity to showcase the entire office and to celebrate the fact that we’re able to provide invisible braces in addition to all of the other services we offer here. We want to welcome any new patients who might be interested in invisible braces. And, as long as you’ve had a checkup and cleaning recently, you could even get started on that same day.
I’m dedicating the entire day to meeting new patients and taking invisible braces records. On a normal day, there isn’t always time to meet new patients and get their process started, so this is a great opportunity.
PDFP: You probably hear this a lot… but why invisible braces? From your perspective, what are the highlights?
Dr. Apple: I like working with patients with invisible braces because we’re able to transform their smile, without the perception that they’re actually doing anything.
One story comes to mind. I was at a comedy show, and one of the comedians started talking about her teeth and her dental experiences. Part way through her set, she removed her invisible braces. Nobody had a clue that she was even wearing it! It didn’t affect her speech or appearance, at all. I thought it was hilarious.
Many people say to me, I want to do something about my smile, but don’t want to go through treatment. Now, we’re able to treat those people too, and they can feel confident about what they’re doing. Some never imagined they could go through treatment before.
PDFP: What motivated you to pursue dentistry and, in particular, orthodontics?
Dr. Apple: I was always interested in science, but also leaned towards the creative side. In college, I took drawing classes and studied a little bit of architecture. That’s when it started to fit together for me that I could use both sides of my brain in dentistry, whether that was moving a single tooth into a narrow space or looking at the entire mouth as a whole.
PDFP: What are your special areas of interest within the field of orthodontics?
Dr. Apple: One piece of technology I really like is the invisible braces software. With this, we’re not just writing directions for a technician to implement. We’re actually using the software like a virtual simulation of the patient’s mouth, and then we work hand-in-hand with the technician to implement that plan. I can experiment with movements on the screen to figure out what works best, and I can always redesign it if something doesn’t work properly.
PDFP: What is your favorite part of your work as an orthodontist at Penn Dental Family Practice?
Dr. Apple: The biggest thing for me is the Penn community. We have people from all over the world studying or working in every area you can imagine and some you haven’t even imagined yet. They come in with questions about their teeth and about how we can work with them. I also have questions for them, about their own backgrounds and interests. I am trying to help people, but I’m also learning so much, and we’re growing together.
PDFP: What makes Penn Dental Family Practice unique?
Dr. Apple: This is one of the only places you have every specialty under one roof, and we see a lot of collaboration here because of that. I don’t go through a day without talking to several other dental specialists about patient care. A patient can come in, and in one day they can potentially get feedback from multiple specialists, so we are on the same page. This helps us provide better care, and helps our patients receive better care and a better understanding of what’s going on. Everyone is working toward the common goal; excellent patient care.
PDFP: What would you tell someone who is considering invisible braces, but is not quite sure they’re ready to commit?
Dr. Apple: I am always ready to discuss anything about orthodontics with patients. If you’ve been thinking about it, but you’re unsure, please come in and talk to me, whether during the Open House or any other day. Let me help answer your questions! And if you choose not to pursue it, that’s fine, but still come in and get the answers.
Doing research online is good, but it’s always best to come in and ask your questions face-to-face. Based on your questions, I can figure out how best to help you or give you information to pursue.
PDFP: What is something fun about you that your patients might not know?
Dr. Apple: I love living in Philadelphia. I love the history and walking around, going to different parks and farmers’ markets. Part of my mission, as a health care provider, is to try to live out a healthy life. I walk almost everywhere, try to eat healthy, prepare my own food, eat fresh. And to me, that’s been able to happen because I live and work in Philadelphia.
Being in Philly and immersing myself in the city and everything it has to offer has been great. I love meeting new people, trying new things and having fun experiences throughout the city.
PDFP: What advice would you give patients and to readers of this blog?
Dr. Apple: My advice is to ask questions. If you’re thinking about something you’ve read… if you’re concerned about the way your teeth look… come in and ask. There is always a benefit in asking. We’re not going to push you to do anything or tell you that you need to do anything. We will tell you about the opportunities to best improve your smile and provide more information so you can make the best decision about your oral health.
Are you interested in learning more about invisible braces, or receiving a free consultation? Don’t forget to stop by our invisible braces Open House on July 14th in University City. You can meet Dr. Apple, receive your free consultation, enter for a chance to win prizes, and even receive a potential discount on treatment!