Health & Wellness

Family Dental practice purchased

The two dentists who recently assumed control of Yellow Springs Family Dental are more than professional partners. They’re also close friends, who see running a practice together as an excellent combination of their passion for dentistry and their desire to live and work near one another.

Doctors Shinyoung Yang and Nancy Snyder took over the practice at 1496 Southgate Avenue at the end of May, after Dr. Yiping Fang, its previous leader, decided to leave. Yang will be Family Dental’s primary dentist, with Snyder filling in for her on occasion and providing additional care as needed.

Snyder and Yang met while studying dentistry at the University of Louisville; they quickly became “inseparable.”

“We’ve been hatching a plan to be close to each other since 2004,” said Snyder in a recent interview.

When the opportunity to practice at Yellow Springs Family Dental arose, they saw it as an excellent prospect. Not only would it allow them to work together, but Snyder told Yang she thought Yellow Springs would be a wonderful match for her and her young family.

“She told me it’s a really nice town, she thought it would be great for me and the baby,” said Yang, who has a 14-month-old daughter. Yang said “all the trees” remind her of North Carolina, where she attended undergraduate school. As outdoor enthusiasts, Yang and her husband are also very pleased with the recreational opportunities in the area.

Yang is still commuting from Cincinnati, where she had been practicing most recently, but hopes to relocate in the near future.

“I’ll probably have to find a place soon, definitely before it gets cold,” she said. Meanwhile, Snyder is moving to Dayton from her current location near Toledo.

“Now we’ll be 30 minutes apart,” she said.

Yang and Snyder said the process of taking over the practice from Dr. Fang had been a “smooth transition.” They plan to keep the office at its current location, and will be open the same hours as before. Yang and Snyder have sent letters to all current patients notifying them of the change.

They said they hope to show people that dentistry is not something they have to fear, at least not with their techniques and their “practice philosophy.”

“We really would like to quash a lot of the stigmas that go along with dentistry,” said Snyder. While people often feel “scared of the dentist,” she said, she and Yang have a method that’s “very gentle.”

It’s important for the public to understand “how much easier [dentistry] is than it used to be,” Snyder added. She also said their approach is “very, very, kid friendly;” children can look forward to a “goodie box” at the end of a visit to Family Dental.

Yang said she’s happy to be “helping people in need.”

“They come in and we can help them…it makes me feel good,” she said.

Non-dentists may have never drawn parallels between dentistry and painting or sculpting, but from Yang and Snyder’s point of view, the disciplines have much in common.

“We’re very artistic,” Snyder said. When remolding a patient’s tooth, “it’s very important that you can totally mimic what nature gave her.” Snyder said Yang can “take wax and make it look just like the tooth in front of you.”

As a high school student, “[Dentistry] fascinated me because it was all about the hand skill,” Yang said. “If your hand skill’s not good, you can’t treat the patient.”

Far from being static, “dentistry evolves every day,” said Snyder, and the experience of treating people is constantly changing too. With every patient, she said, “it’s a different personality…it’s a different mouth.” The field may always be in flux, but dentists tend to stay in it for the long haul: “Even when you’re 60 you want to stay in the game,” said Snyder.

Dentistry has traditionally been a male-dominated field, but Snyder and Yang see the balance shifting.

“Our class [at the University of Louisville] was the first class to have more than 50 percent female students,” said Snyder.

“The percentage is going up,” Yang added.

It will take some time for the two to get to know the entire patient base; meanwhile, Yang and Snyder have placed advertisements and distributed fliers with the hope of attracting new patients as well. They’re eager to extend their services to as many villagers as possible, in the conviction that good dental care is essential to maintaining good health.

“I don’t think people realize how much they rely on their teeth,” said Snyder.

 

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