Daryl Proctor, DDS, MS, said that 20 percent of his clients are adults, but he recommends that young people should be evaluated for orthodontic treatment before their teens.
Earlier detection and correction of conditions such as “buck teeth,” “underbite” or “overbite,” crowding, misplaced or abnormally aligned teeth, can be more easily corrected before the teen years.
He said the benefits are that families can save not only time and money, but also enhance a child’s appearance and self-esteem.
Dr. Proctor opened his practice in Placerville four years ago. He grew up in Sonora and always loved the foothills. He and his wife, Joy, like to water and snow ski, camp, hike and bicycle.
His practice is called Foothills Orthodontics, and his offices are decorated with large photographs he has taken during his outdoor adventures.
His uncle was an orthodontist, and he was always attracted to the field. He likes working with kids, improving their smiles and self-esteem. “It’s rewarding. It’s fun to see the changes,” he said.
He graduated in dentistry from Loma Linda University School of Dentistry in Loma Linda in 1994, and practiced general dentistry for five years.
But he really wanted to be an orthodontist, so he returned to Loma Linda where he received his Master’s degree in Orthodontics and Facial Orthopedics. He is a Diplomate of the American Board of Orthodontics, which means he is certified as an orthodontic specialist by a board of examiners.
As a new orthodontist, Dr. Proctor looked at Sonora, where his parents live. There were no openings there, but Dr. Lothar Guttschuss was retiring from his Placerville practice after 20 years. Dr. Proctor bought it.
He has just finished converting his record keeping to an all-paperless system. Because he uses a lot of x-rays and photographs, he ordered Mac computers for their graphic qualities.
With two daughters, Brianna, 1, and Kayla, 2, he and his wife recently moved from Camino to Placerville. “We live close enough to El Dorado High School that we can hear the football games,” he said.
Living in a small town suits his family fine. “With so many young patients, I get asked all the time to sponsor their teams or activities. I sponsor as many as I can,” he said.
With two small children, he is not able to get away to go on the mission trips with other Seventh Day Adventist medical providers. His wife has accompanied him on some of them, and he is looking forward to taking the family someday.
The trips are once or twice a year for one or two weeks. He has been to Belize, Brazil, Honduras, Malawi, Mexico, Papua, Marshall Islands and Bangladesh. “In Bangladesh, it was so crowded. We saw 2,000 patients a week. In Malawi, people were dying of AIDS. We relieve pain, make them whole and give them better health,” he said. “It gives you perspective. I think every kid should go.”
For his patients at Foothills Clinic in Placerville, Dr. Proctor recommends a review of their orthodontic work every 10 to 15 years. “We follow our patients for two years, but the teeth tend to shift over time, and should be checked,” he said.
Foothills Orthodontics is located at 4282 Golden Center Drive, Suite 2, off Missouri Flat Road in Placerville. The telephone number is 530-622-1525.