An Artist’s Touch
For a flawlessly functioning and natural-looking smile, patients turn to Dr. Bruce Wilderman and his staff at Artistic Expressions Dentistry
by Bill Donahue

Pete Henzy recently went to a local branch of the Department of Motor Vehicles to renew his driver’s license. When the DMV official handed back his finished license, he realized it was the first time he had ever smiled for a driver’s license photo. He credits this remarkable turn of events to Bruce J. Wilderman, D.D.S., of Artistic Expressions Dentistry, an adult cosmetic and restorative dentistry practice in Doylestown.

“My father had bad teeth, and it was just something he passed down to me,” says Henzy, an insurance consultant with a list of global clients. “I had a myriad of problems; my mouth was not a pretty sight. Having my teeth fixed was on my ‘bucket list,’ so after I got the second of my three children through college, I decided it was time to cross that one off the list.”

At the time Henzy had been a patient of the late George Bullock, a prominent orthodontist in Doylestown, who recommended Dr. Wilderman to quarterback Henzy’s smile makeover. The prescription included six months of orthodontic treatment under Dr. Bullock’s care, to set the stage for Dr. Wilderman, who in turn provided Henzy with as many as 15 dental crowns and veneers.

“Now my kids tell me I have a nicer smile than they do,” says Henzy, who had his new smile installed over the course of a year because of his busy schedule. “They tell me I should have done it sooner, because I could have been smiling in all our family pictures all this time. It’s also healthier and easier to maintain. Who knows what kind of gum problems I would have had if I hadn’t gotten this fixed?”

Such stories are commonplace for Dr. Wilderman, whose practice performs complete smile makeovers and other life-affecting cosmetic dental procedures, such as porcelain veneers, dental implants, bonding and teeth whitening. He and his staff provide all this in a welcoming environment assisted by state-of-the-art technologies and other comforts designed to enhance each patient’s experience.

“Beautiful dentistry is invisible, so other people cannot tell that my patients had their teeth fixed,” says Dr. Wilderman. “I can break every tiny aspect of a patient’s smile down to symmetry and proportion. The way we go about the process, the patient and I reverse engineer the smile and figure out what the end result will look like before we begin. It’s a specific process based on function. The mouth is used for a lot of things—smiling, chewing, speaking—so you have to know how all those things interplay and put the teeth in place so they are in harmony with how nature works. A healthy smile will look right and function correctly; aesthetics will follow function.”

Dr. Wilderman, who earned the peer-reviewed honor of being named Top Cosmetic Dentist by Philadelphia magazine in 2010 and 2014, often finds himself “fixing” restorative work that had been performed elsewhere. Prospective patients will come in after having seen another dentist, complaining of a lisp, a tired jaw or an aesthetically poor result. He credits his ability to provide such results to his years of experience and his education, which began with earning his dental degree from Temple University’s Kornberg School of Dentistry in 1982. He has continued to hone his craft in the years since. For example, he has spent “tens of thousands of dollars and countless hours” on continuing education and advanced post-graduate training through the internationally acclaimed Dawson Academy.

He also cites another defining characteristic: his thoroughness. Case in point: Dr. Wilderman meets with each patient four times. After a patient discusses their concerns and hopes for their smile, Dr. Wilderman then crafts an individualized treatment plan. He uses this information, along with dental record and X-rays, to create a computerized, three-dimensional representation of the expected result, followed by a wax model that fits to the patient’s mouth to measure aesthetics and functionality. Dr. Wilderman then provides specifications to a ceramist at an off-site lab to create the porcelain veneers or dental implants. On the third meeting, he provides “temps,” as he calls them, which act not only as temporary teeth but also as a template for the finished product. For the fourth meeting, he places the permanent teeth to make sure the patient is happy with the finished product.

“It sounds trite, but we try to exceed expectations,” he says. This commitment to going above and beyond extends to the way he reduces patients’ anxiety during procedures—he delivers anesthesia as painlessly as possible using a computer-controlled injection system known as the Wand—to the way his staff helps patients arrange for payment. “Our patients love us. We have some people who have traveled here from north of Allentown, west of Lancaster and even some from Philly. It’s rare that people travel out of a big city for specialized medical care but do so because of the results they see on our website.”

Dr. Wilderman is blessed with what he calls a “millimeter eye,” which enables him to detect even the most insignificant changes in a patient’s smile. Also, he has an artist’s touch, according to patients such as Patricia Dusman. Considering her vocation as an abstract artist, Dusman is a good judge. She has been familiar with Dr. Wilderman’s work for more than six years—first, through a partial mouth restoration he performed for her husband, then through his efforts to fix her own imperfect smile.  

“My teeth were basically disintegrating,” she says. “When I went to see [Dr. Wilderman], I thought he would restore the surfaces of my teeth, but as we were talking, I could see he had a vision. He told me it would be better to do the whole mouth so all the teeth would work together for a perfect bite.

“Dr. Wilderman is an artist in the way he structures teeth,” she continues. “He makes teeth that have minor imperfections and translucency to them; he steers you away from making them too white. … That’s the kind of delicate care he takes. I get people all the time telling me, ‘You have the most beautiful smile.’ I’ve even had other dentists say I had beautiful teeth. Even they can’t tell they’re not real.”

Dusman continues to see Dr. Wilderman for routine checkups and maintenance, and she has been thoroughly impressed with his follow-up care.

“He doesn’t just fix your smile and say, ‘Have a nice life,’” she says. “He’s constantly monitoring and inspecting his work. … He also gave me a special mouth guard. A lot of my problems were attributed to me grinding my teeth, so if I had had [a mouth guard] earlier in life, it probably would have prevented a lot of my problems in the first place.”

Dusman has returned the favor by recommending Dr. Wilderman to anyone she meets in need of a skilled touch when it comes to making over a smile. Unsurprisingly, she’s hardly the only patient to offer such high praise of his practice.

“In my profession I’m often asked to give referrals,” says Pete Henzy, the jet-setting insurance consultant who had his smile restored by Dr. Wilderman. “Because of my travel schedule, I don’t have enough time to give everything a review, but I knew I would make the time to recommend Dr. Wilderman because of the ‘product’ he’s selling. If you want something done right, he’s the guy to go to.”

Artistic Expressions Dentistry
400 Swamp Road
Doylestown, PA 18901

Photograph by Allure West Studios