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Natural Choice
At Exton Dental Health Group, Drs. Jonathan Scharf and David Kopecki create healthy, beautiful smiles designed to give patients a fresh start

by Bill Donahue

The doctors at Exton Dental Health Group and the Pennsylvania Center for Cosmetic Dentistry excel at helping their patients attain healthy, beautiful and natural-looking smiles. As a result, they effectively give their patients the fresh start they have been seeking.

“You have baby boomers, the aging population and other people who are looking to regain or recapture a part of their life,” says Jonathan Scharf, D.M.D., F.A.A.C.D., of Exton Dental Health Group and the Pennsylvania Center for Cosmetic Dentistry. “We see people who have changed relationships, recovered from illnesses or simply aged, and they want a new beginning so they can reinvent themselves. I recently had one patient who was in remission from cancer and she wanted to start over with a beautiful smile, which we were happy to give her.”

Founded by Dr. Scharf more than 40 years ago, Exton Dental Health Group has earned its place among the most highly regarded and most acclaimed practices in the Delaware Valley. The practice’s reputation is due in large part to the sterling credentials of Dr. Scharf and his colleague, David J. Kopecki, D.M.D.

Dr. Scharf received his board certification from and is a Diplomate of the American Board of Esthetic Dentistry, as well as a Fellow of the International Academy of Dental-Facial Esthetics. Even more impressively, Dr. Scharf is past president and Accredited Fellow of the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD). The written exams, presentations and evaluations required in order to achieve Fellowship status in AACD are reviewed by a sophisticated panel of expert cosmetic dentists from across the country. Only 60 individuals worldwide have achieved Fellowship. In order to maintain Fellowship, dentists must continue to publish papers in educational journals, as well as present and attend continuing-education courses regularly.

“The success rate in terms of the end result increases depending on the dentist’s experience and credentials,” Dr. Scharf says. “Any dentist can say they are a cosmetic dentist, but the most important thing is to evaluate the dentist’s credentials. When a dentist has earned the credentials from an organization such as AACD, patients can be confident that they are working with a clinician who truly has the ability, competency and experience to provide quality cosmetic dental care. Fellowship in the academy is considered the gold standard and an important way to evaluate the capability of a dentist to successfully complete a cosmetic case.”

Dr. Kopecki, meanwhile, earned his doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine. He was in private practice for three years prior to attaining certification in prosthodontics through Temple University’s Kornberg School of Dentistry. Dr. Kopecki, who was a member of the U.S. Army Dental Corps from 2001 to 2009, was recently named president of the Pennsylvania Prosthodontics Association for 2014.

Considering the doctors’ credentials, it’s not surprising that some of the region’s best-known television and media personalities—people whose careers depend on their appearance—turn to Exton Dental Health Group for help in perfecting their smiles.

“What we’re doing is of a very subjective nature, so it becomes very important to sit down with and interview each patient, getting to know who they are and what they’re looking for out of life,” he adds. “You don’t want to put a football player’s teeth in a ballerina and vice versa. We can create the most magnificent dental restoration, but if it doesn’t meet the patient’s expectations, we don’t consider it a true success. Our goal is to exceed our patients’ expectations.”

To ensure a positive experience, Exton Dental Health Group maintains a highly skilled staff of 16 auxiliary staff members, including hygienists, insurance and treatment coordinators, as well as “expanded function” dental assistants. Also, the practice partners with a laboratory in Beverly Hills, Calif., to create exquisite dental restorations. The technicians at the laboratory are among the best trained in the country—true ceramic artists, according to Dr. Scharf—which he sees as a necessity because it ensures that patients receive the finest aesthetic results in the form of natural-looking replacement teeth.

Eliminating Guesswork
“The technology and the materials have been great for many years, but they’re always getting better,” Dr. Scharf says. “There is also a certain trend toward greater predictability using digital technology. We can do scans of a patient’s teeth and face to help determine the size and shape of the teeth we are replacing, which means less guesswork for a more predictable smile. This doesn’t diminish the need for artistic vision, especially with the type of dentistry we’re doing.”

Although Drs. Scharf and Kopecki strive to create smiles that exceed patients’ expectations, their respective approaches differ significantly. This enables them to cater to an exceptionally diverse group.

“My patients are heartbroken over losing their first tooth, whether from trauma, decay or dental disease,” says Dr. Scharf. “My job is to make it seem as though my patients never lost a tooth at all. In my world, the worst tooth to lose is the first, and in Dr. Kopecki’s world, the worst tooth to lose is the last. No matter what stage of tooth loss a patient is experiencing, it is the goal of both Dr. Kopecki and I to help them regain what they have lost and regain their lives.”

Dr. Kopecki’s patients typically present with advanced or complete tooth loss, which he treats with either partial dentures or secure/fixed replacements. These can include crowns, bridges or dental implants. In many cases his advanced training allows him to utilize techniques that free a patient from uncomfortable, ill-fitting dentures. Dr. Scharf often works with patients needing complete or partial smile makeovers for image improvement using veneers and bonding, as well as implant-supported cosmetic crowns and bridges.

Although Drs. Scharf and Kopecki both focus primarily on cosmetic and advanced restorative dentistry, the cutting-edge practice is well equipped to perform general dental care as well, including regular dental examinations and routine maintenance for all family members.

“Although prosthodontics is my specialty, what Dr. Scharf and I do best is personalization,” Dr. Kopecki says. “We serve a diverse patient population, and we have the expertise to provide individualized treatment. We also offer a lot of appointment flexibility for our patients, including evening and Saturday hours.”

Megan Ferrani is among the thousands of patients who have benefited from the practice’s unrivaled expertise and artistic eye. She was referred to Dr. Scharf by a friend so she could address her unhappiness with her crooked smile and chipped teeth. Although she had to drive as many as 60 miles from her home in Bethlehem to see him, she found the experience to be well worth the drive.

“He changed my life, definitely,” says Ferrani, who first came to see Dr. Scharf in May 2012 and concluded her treatment a year later. “He was the only dentist who could tell me what was causing my teeth to chip” and wear down. Also, considering too much of her gums were visible, she was unsure of what could be done.

Dr. Scharf pinpointed Ferrani’s grinding of her teeth while she slept as the primary culprit, and because of this her crooked bottom teeth caused her top teeth to chip and wear. After carefully reviewing her case, Dr. Scharf recommended Invisalign orthodontic treatment to straighten her teeth, as well as veneers and gum surgery to perfect the rest of her smile.

“I had very low self-confidence back then,” Ferrani admits. “In pictures when I would smile, there was a gap between my bottom and top teeth, and some people even pointed it out to me. Now my teeth look amazing, and I’m not afraid to smile in pictures anymore. I’m ecstatic with the results.”

Regardless of the patient’s needs, whether it be a complete smile makeover similar to Ferrani’s or a routine dental cleaning, Drs. Scharf and Kopecki have the skills, experience and credentials to provide the right solution.

“A beautiful smile speaks for itself,” Dr. Scharf says, uttering a phrase the practice has trademarked. “Consider it an investment; it’s like a beautiful new suit you never have to take off.”

Exton Dental Health Group
Pennsylvania Center for Cosmetic Dentistry
The Commons at Lincoln Center
101 John Robert Thomas Drive
Exton, PA 19341
Phone: 610-363-2300
Web: www.extondental.com

 

Suburban Life Magazine