MEET DR. CASEY
Dr. Casey is the driving force behind Dental Express. Inspired by over a decade of practicing dentistry in the Midwest before moving to California in 2014, Dr. Casey sought to establish a family-friendly practice in San Diego that was accessible, inviting, and affordable to all people. He wanted to cultivate an environment where patients could expect honest care and honest treatment. No sales; no gimmicks; no hidden costs. Dental Express was born from that vision. He strives to cultivate an environment in which Dental Express doctors and employees are empowered to always do the right thing for their patients and establish enduring relationships with staff and patients alike.
Why did you become a dentist?
You could say I was born into dentistry. My dad is a dentist. My cousin is a dentist. My mom was a hygienist. And even my grandma worked in our family dental office. So it’s a family thing. I’ve grown up around it.
When it came time to pick a career in life, dentistry seemed like the natural fit. That said, I’ll be honest, becoming a dentist definitely wasn’t my first thought when I started looking into a profession. But as I got older, I started to appreciate what my family was doing for the community more and more. I realized the endless possibilities to give back. So I made the decision. I became a dentist, and eventually, after years of practicing in the Midwest, I dedicated myself to growing my own dental practice. I believe building a patient-focused dental practice and working as a dentist within my own business gives me a unique perspective on dentistry. And I know my family is proud that I picked a great gig that works really well with who I am.
Where did you go to dental school?
I grew up in Oklahoma City and went to the University of Oklahoma for undergraduate. And while my family would’ve probably loved for me to go to OU’s dental school, which was only two miles from our house, I was ready for a change and to experience a new city. So I went to the Baylor College of Dentistry in Dallas.
After graduating, I returned home and immediately started helping to build the family dental practice. This is where the core philosophy of patient-focused dentistry was ingrained in me. I learned from my dad that “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Meaning, I’m always looking for ways to give my patients the easiest, most cost-effective solutions possible. Because when you show the patients that their concerns, their experiences, and their expectations matter, you win not only a patient for life, but you also win a new Dental Express family member for life.
What is your favorite part of your dental practice?
My favorite part of my practice is that we have such a great group of people. It makes it fun to show up to work every day. The team we’ve assembled at Dental Express brings such an exciting, bright and positive energy, it’s truly a pleasure to work together. It’s this upbeat attitude coupled with our dedication to helping everyone we can that makes our practice special. There is no “one size fits all”. We don’t turn away anyone. And we work tirelessly to find ways to help each individual patient. Whether their issues are simple or complex, the Dental Express team tailors our care to each individual. The result of this hard-work and flexibility is happy patients. We truly provide a family-oriented, patient-focused, dental experience. And that’s what I set out to do in 2014 when I opened my practice — for you, about you dentistry. No upsells. No gimmicks. No surprises.
What are your passions outside of dentistry?
My number one passion is my family. I have a beautiful daughter, Lola, and an amazing little man, Nathan. These two have brought more joy into my life than anything I could have ever dreamed of. From skiing together in Colorado to cooking a simple family meal together, the kids light up my life. They are smart, active, and such an inspiration. And they are the reason I do what I do. I want to give them the best life possible and provide them with all the opportunities I had as a child. And you never know, maybe we’ll even have another dentist in the family. Either way, they are my passion.
Outside of family, I love flying airplanes. I’ve sailed the skies from coast to coast and love the feeling of soaring above the clouds. I also love snow skiing. So if you can’t find me in one of our offices, or home with the kids, you better check the tarmac or nearest chairlift. That’s probably where I’ll be.
What do you enjoy most about working at Dental Express?
I love the variety. We have such a diverse group of individuals. We can speak from three to seven languages in each office. This versatility allows us to connect and serve almost anyone in San Diego. As we grow as a practice, it doesn’t matter what community we go into, we’re there to help everyone. And that really stands out with Dental Express. We love to serve our community and we want to become even more involved in connecting with people. To me, the people I work with, the environment we work in, and the energy in our offices are all very important. It’s a combination of these factors that makes us a successful family dental office. We have the dedication of a phenomenal team and we’re always finding new ways to better serve our patients. For that, I’m forever grateful.
How do you help cultivate the Dental Express team?
My goal every day is to try and bring out the best in every team member. And while that may seem easy, it takes dedication to succeed. Meaning, I work very hard to understand the needs, wants, and goals of each team member. And this varies greatly for each person. Once I have a clear understanding of how I can help someone, I focus on coaching, supporting, and encouraging them in any way possible. I strongly believe that when you have team members that know you stand behind them and support them, this allows each person to bring out their best. I’m also always learning from my team. As a dentist, you can never stop learning, never stop growing, and never stop finding new ways to help your patients.
What would you say is the highlight of your career?
The highlight of my career is definitely opening new offices from scratch and watching them grow. It’s an amazing feeling to see a family dental office go from an idea to being filled with dentists, assistants, office managers, and happy patients just a few years later. The joy I get watching this evolution and seeing the loyalty of our staff and patients is priceless. It’s truly fulfilling.
And to add to that, I love the feeling of going out into the town and hearing someone say how much they love Dental Express without ever seeing me in the office. It makes me feel really good to know I can trust my team fully and we are providing the best patient experience possible. I love telling people that I love what I do.
Of Dental Express’ five core values (integrity, empathy, adaptability, collaboration, and whistle while you work) which do you feel is the most valuable to you as a dentist?
Definitely adaptability. In dentistry, nothing is the same. Nothing is constant. Every day is a new challenge. Each patient is unique. You have to be able to go with the flow and adapt to any situation. This is what makes a great dentist and more importantly an inviting dental office. While I can surely make an argument for each core value and why it is vital to the dental experience, I strongly believe adaptability is the most valuable to me as a dentist.
What is your greatest challenge working as a dentist?
You see, most people are conditioned to dislike the dentist. So I spend a lot of my time working to win people over. I’m always working to gain my patients’ trust, help them feel comfortable, and have confidence in their dental work. While this is a challenge it’s also one of my greatest pleasures. I love the feeling of meeting a patient who is afraid of the dentist and then after a few visits, watching them forget about their fear completely. They begin to trust us, and I believe that’s why our patients stick with us.