Our staff members chat about our team efforts, local field trends, and their own personal learning moments within our day-to-day professional practice.
We congratulate our dental hygienist on earning her degree!
Laura Steinmetz, RDH with her diploma
We are so proud of our hygienist Laura Steinmetz, who has earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Dental Hygiene from Old Dominion University! The minimum degree required for professional practice as a hygienist is an Associate. We commend Laura’s dedication to completing her coursework as she continued to deliver excellent care in our practice—all this while she was expecting her first child, and then as a new mother! Congratulations, Laura!
Dr. Gio Iuculano, DDS Praises His Colleague Dr. Frank Mitchell, DDS
In addition to his work in the dental profession, Dr. Frank Mitchell, DDS is an artist whose ability naturally lends itself to his work with cosmetic dentistry. “Beautiful work!” says Dr. Gio of the implants and smile makeovers that Dr. Mitchell does.
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Working with Dr. Mitchell, I have seen his natural artistic personality. Dr. Mitchell is very gifted in the aesthetics. I’ve seen him do quite a few interior makeover[s], redoing front teeth, to give those patients that Hollywood WOW smile. Clinically also, he’s great at placing implants—he does a lot of implants—and just the regular fillings. Beautiful work!
Dr. Gio Iuculano, DDS Commends His Colleague Dr. Vasyl Leskiv, DDS
Dr. Gio discusses Dr. Leskiv’s ability to perform root canals with minimal pain and outstanding results.
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Dr. Leskiv is a dentist that truly cares. I’ve seen him time and time help out patients coming into the office in pain. One of Dr. Leskiv’s expertise are root canals. He has a true passion for them; he loves doing them, and I’ve seen him tackle some very difficult cases with some beautiful and outstanding finished work. On the x-rays the root canals look beautiful, and patients are usually feeling better within a few days. I never hear a complaint about how painful it was! So, Dr. Leskiv can make a root canal even a pleasant experience.
Fifteen Years of Teamwork at Winchester Dental
Some of our team members have been working together for years! What helps them provide outstanding patient care? Dr. Gio tells us in this 60-second video clip.
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I’m very fortunate to say I came to Winchester back in 2001. And when I started, Kristy—my assistant—was already working in the office with another doctor, so I got teamed up with her. Then about six months later Julie came on board, and ever since then, we’ve been working together. So, we are like a well-oiled machine. The girls read my mind half the time—I don’t even have to say anything. So, that makes it for easier, better days; we’re more efficient, and it allows us to provide better care for all our patients. And fifteen years later I still have—we still have a great time, and lots of fun all day long.
Crystal Lawrence, RDH Explains How Dr. Gio Grants Wishes
Our hygienist Crystal explains what Dr. Gio does to honor the wishes of patients.
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Dr. Gio really, he cares about his patients. And so that’s what he does, he wants to make them feel at home, and—and I think that’s why, you know, he kept bringing me back… because people were asking, and he just wanted them to feel at home.
He wanted them to feel like their ask—their requests would be granted!
That they—yeah, that we really care about them, right.
Crystal Lawrence, RDH Praises Her Colleague Mistie Dodson, RDH
When it comes to their own dental hygiene, our team members can choose from among the best! In this video clip, Crystal discusses why she always asks Mistie—another of Winchester Dental’s excellent hygienists—to clean her own teeth.
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So Crystal, you’re a hygienist.
But you have to get your teeth cleaned sometimes.
So you just got your teeth cleaned last week by Mistie.
What was it like being a hygienist, getting it done by another hygienist? Are you more critical—and with all your critical feelings, if you’re more critical—how did she do? I already know the answer.
Right, Mistie is excellent, and when I come up, I always ask her to clean my teeth, because she just—she has a nice touch, and she does a really thorough job. She’s pretty fast, too! It’s nice not to have to sit through too long, but yeah—she’s, she’s my favorite… favorite girl to go to, and actually, when she was in school, I was kind of like one of her mentors—mentors… and when we were hiring, we were at the old office, Mistie was one of them—I said, I said you might want to look at Mistie for working here. So I kind of, you know, did that thing. I didn’t get her the job, but I just kind of, you know.
But I’m meeting Mistie’s mentor? That’s—
Yeah, she’s good, she’s really good.
Over the top.
Okay! Over the top.
How does it feel to have worked directly on Winchester Dental’s American Dream Makeover?
Smile makeovers are rewarding to begin with, as they hold the potential to alter someone’s life in a positive way. They are especially rewarding when our team has the opportunity to use technology like ours, creating an artistic result in one day. The team worked hard for about seven hours on our candidate Carrie’s case…. It was fascinating to better understand Carrie’s journey and her future life pursuits. Thanks to Carrie, our assistants Jen and Sam, the Winchester Dental staff, and Dr. Gio for providing the opportunity!”
It felt great to be a part of it, to assist Dr. Mitchell in making the CERECs for Carrie that day. It’s so rewarding! And to see how happy she was when we were done and she looked in the mirror, I don’t think words could explain!”
It felt wonderful to have the opportunity to work with Carrie and The American Dream Makeover. I was able to spend some time with Carrie and learn more about her family. She is a strong woman and gives a lot of her time to others! It made me feel good to be able to give something back to her.”
Which aspects of dental care is Dr. Mitchell passionate about? How do you observe him educating team members and patients from day to day?
Dr. Mitchell is passionate about all aspects of dentistry—it is what he talks about all day long. He is the first dentist I have met who truly lives and breathes general dentistry. He is always telling us about new materials that he has used and read about, and procedures that he performs. His enthusiasm is contagious!”
How does your team gain, train, and retain the best talent you can find? Are all team members part of this process?
When adding to our team, we look for qualities in a person that coincide with our goal to provide exceptional care in a friendly environment.
Continuing education is important to our doctors, and that is reflected in how we train our staff. We want them to be experts in services they are providing. We set aside several hours each month for training.
People stay where they are treated well! Our jobs can be stressful, but we try to keep a positive environment and respect each employee as an individual. We truly want each person to enjoy coming to work each day and believe that is possible!”
A recent professional ‘aha!’ moment for me was when…
…we had a patient who presented to the office with a broken front tooth from her denture and was very scared to show anyone. During the process of making her a new denture, she came in for a “try in” appointment to make sure she was happy with the denture’s bite, shade, and shape prior to our processing the appliance. We handed a mirror to the patient and she was overwhelmed with excitement that she “could finally wear lipstick again.” We are bringing confidence and smiles back, and making overall healthier patients!”
Which professional best practice have you seen in action this week that inspires you?
A patient needing extractions was referred to Dr. Richardson from within the office. Even though the referral came from within our own practice, Dr. Richardson reviewed the patient’s medical history with him to ensure she followed a best practice for not only his dental needs but his overall health.”
What aspects of dental care is Dr. Richardson passionate about? How do you observe her educating team members and patients from day to day?
Dr. Richardson is passionate about patient care. She gives each patient detailed information on their specific need and educates them regarding all possible methods of treatment, but with a no-pressure approach.”
She loves all the new technology and is always excited about trying new things like our Spectra when we got it, the T-Scan, and now our CT scan!”
Why are you excited that there is a new CT scan unit in the office?
This is another example of including the most modern technology to better serve our patients. Dr. Gio has provided us the ability to diagnose and evaluate in three dimensions instead of just two. Another progressive step with amazingly low exposure for patients (equivalent to a single small x-ray).”
I am excited about having a CT scan because it opens up opportunities to our practice. We now have the opportunity to look at scans for special applications such as orthodontic evaluation, treating TMJ disorders, and implant procedures. It is a state-of-the-art step to better our patients’ overall oral health.”
What aspects of dental care is Dr. Gio passionate about? How do you observe him educating team members and patients from day to day?
Dr. Gio is passionate about providing the best dental care that he possibly can. He specializes in sleep apnea and TMJ disorders, which eventually led him into learning functional orthodontics to help prevent kids from developing sleep apnea and TMJ disorders. Sleep apnea, TMJ disorders, and functional orthodontics are all areas that don’t get enough attention, but that are all related. The fact that he has taken on all three of these areas shows just how much he cares and wants to help.”
What is one thing you have learned from a current colleague?
I learned from Dr. Mitchell about the advantages of screw-retained implant crowns over regular implant crowns. With a screw-retained crown, there is no cement used that could possibly get down into or around the implant and cause infection or possibly an implant failure.”
What are three things about the practice that make you look forward to coming to work every day?
My coworkers, creating relationships with patients and helping improve their health and lives, and learning new things about dentistry everyday (even after 16 years!).”
Our great staff (everyone gets along and we work together as a team); the pride I take in knowing that we are providing quality care to our patients; and having a practice that is clean, organized, and has updated technology.”
Great, friendly coworkers; cool dental tools; and nice patients!”
The closeness and camaraderie of the staff, the Sirius Radio so I can hum while I work, and the familiarity and friendliness of patients who come to see us regularly.”
Seeing patients I’ve seen for years and meeting new patients; having a great office with all the latest technology to better treat my patients; working with my co-workers in our clean, organized environment!”
Great team atmosphere—love my co-workers! Doctors that are genuinely excited about what they do; and encouragement to learn new things.”
Helping others and making a difference in lives; good atmosphere—honest and loving staff (friends); great doctors to work with. Each one has great knowledge and different strengths.”
We are an organized professional practice who care about our patients; knowing that we all work together and there is always another staff member asking how are you doing, or if you need anything (we have great teamwork!); and that management acknowledges your hard work and lets you know how good a job you’re doing while they are encouraging at the same time.”
What are three things you aspire to be each day at work?
Confident and competent in the care I’m providing to each patient; empathetic and understanding towards my patients’ concerns and feelings; and certain that I’m providing individualized care for each one of my patients’ specific needs.”
Positive, competent, and empathetic.”