While anxiety and fear surrounding dental care is as common as dentists portrayed as villains (“Little Shop of Horrors,” Marathon Man,” “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” etc.) Dr. Nicholas Brown, DDS, is attempting to flip the script one patient at a time.
Brown practices at Relaxation Dental in Salida, and his motto reads, “Because there is a better way.”
Dental anxiety is real. According to a 2018 survey by DentaVox, 61% of the 18,000 respondents said they suffer from dental fear. Top fears include pain, the smell of chemicals and the sound of the drill.
These fears keep people from seeking out medical help.
Brown believes the first step to addressing dental fears is empathy. “It’s great when a person likes coming to see us at Relaxation Dental — but you’ve gotta know that they’re a little bit crazy. (Love you!) I really do understand the people that don’t want to be in that dental chair, and that goes a long way to improving their experience. Second: The Golden Rule is key. In fact, treating others like I would want to be treated is probably why our community has responded so favorably to us. Lastly: We go the extra mile. When people experience how we replace their past experiences with amazing ones, it’s a game changer for them.”
John Takacs, Relaxation Dental marketing director, said, “We cater to the anxious patient. Dr. Brown is one of 1% of IV sedation doctors in the state.”
Using IV sedation means a quicker recovery time for the patient, with more ability to make adjustments during the procedure. Brown also offers digital numbing, a method of isolating the immediate area of pain.
Before entering the field of dentistry, Dr. Brown earned a business degree. While the business mindset is résumé-based, he said dentistry “encourages me to care about all types of people and their wellbeing. I get to learn a lot about unselfishness.”
Jessie Brown, business growth and team development specialist, said, “There are a million things we do differently (from other dental offices). We are bringing services not often offered in small towns. Patients appreciate not having to go to the Front Range.”
She said, “When someone comes in with a cracked tooth, we look into the ‘why.’ That is not commonly done.”
Jessie added that they have a dedicated patient concierge and they offer noise-canceling headphones, which helps alleviate a few of those aforementioned fears.
Jessie said they have plans to bring a pediatric dentist to the office in the near future.
Relaxation Dental will be hosting their fifth annual Smiles For Freedom event Nov. 6. The event features a flag ceremony, a live performance of the National Anthem and free dental work for all veterans all day.
During the event, Dr. Brown and his team typically provide between $30,000 and $50,000 in free dental care. Everyone in the office donates their time for the day.
Dr. Brown said he enjoys serving the veterans to thank them for their selflessness. His father was in the Navy and worked as a radiation control water chemist, living underwater for 3 months at a time.
“Veterans are not familiar with being taken care of — they are used to giving,” Dr. Brown said. “They have a hard time receiving help. The ones we can draw out to participate, to come out of their selfless shells, are so appreciative. It’s a super fun event.”
To sign up for the event, call the office at 719-539-3145. To learn more, see the Relaxation Dental ad on the back cover.
“We love knowing that we are positively impacting the lives of our patients and people in the community through compassionate dentistry,” Dr. Brown said.