We had the good fortune of connecting with Elijah Wang and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Elijah, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
We created LVL Orthodontics with a vision of an orthodontic practice designed for the modern patient. We wanted to serve the community by providing an excellent orthodontic experience supported by modern treatment modalities and the latest technology. We felt that there has been a trend towards quick and cheap dental services that often does not focus on the patient’s dental health or a patient’s desired outcome and we wanted to create a practice where our patients would feel like their treatment would never be compromised. Additionally, orthodontic practices are often designed to treat children and teenagers, but we wanted to foster an environment where adults and mature patients could also feel comfortable to seek orthodontic care in a relaxed, clean, and peaceful clinical setting. Recent research has shown that 70% of adults in America could benefit from orthodontic treatment, and this statistic is supported by the fact that the American Association of Orthodontists found that 1 in every 4 orthodontic patient is over the age of 21. By specifically creating a practice designed to cater to the tastes and schedules of adult patients, we hoped that we could become a respected provider of adult orthodontic treatment in the Dallas area.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
The journey to become an orthodontist is not an easy or quick one. Due to the very limited spaces available in orthodontic residencies in America, the vast majority of dental students are not able to qualify to become an orthodontist. Often times, only the top 5% of students graduating from dental school will be selected to continue on to become an orthodontist. Both Dr. Grace and Dr. Eli graduated from Loma Linda University in Southern California having received a Master’s in Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics and started practicing together in Colorado Springs as an employee of a dental corporation. There, both doctors were able to sharpen their abilities as practitioners, taking on advanced cases requiring laser surgery, or multi-disciplinary cases utilizing oral maxillofacial surgeons to correct severe malocclusion and skeletal deformities. However, there was an overall pressure from the corporate structure to prioritize profit over treatment, and both doctors felt an increasing need to take more control over how an orthodontic practice should be run. Additionally, there was a slow but obvious trend of an increasing adult population seeking orthodontic care with limited facilities where adults could find an environment specifically catering to them. The two doctors found that although Texas had a dense population of dental and orthodontic providers, it was very heavy in corporate dentistry, and that doctor owned practices were not as common. Thus, LVL Orthodontics was born as a doctor owned and run orthodontic practice designed to cater to patients who want to be treated by specialists in their field and who are dedicated to providing the most modern, up-to-date, and scientifically supported treatment. From non-surgical methods of changing skeletal relationships in adults, to simple cosmetic alignment issues, Dr. Eli and Dr. Grace will find the healthiest and most efficient options to consider.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
One of the greatest things that attracted us to Dallas to start our clinic was the fact that the area contains so many different communities that mesh together to produce a unique experience. One of my favorite places in the area to visit is the Dallas Aquarium because of all the unique animals, plants, and fish kept in an open air exhibit. We would of course stop by the giant eyeball artwork to take a photo, and then possibly move on to experience some more cultural exhibits at the Dallas Museum of Art. In the evening, we might take a night out to visits the bars in Deep Ellum such as the Punch Bowl Social after dinner at the famous Pecan Lodge. After time in downtown, I would also like to spend some time in Carrolton, where there are awesome Korean BBQ places such as Ari BBQ, along with getting some milk tea at TeaLatte Bar. In the evening, it would be fun to gear up and play some games at the virtual reality lounge, Zero Latency in Addison. To get a little fresh air, I would also want to visit the Dallas Arboretum to take a stroll among the botanical garden, and possibly listen to some local bands performing. If the weather cooperated, I would also get my fishing poles and try our luck to catch and release some bass or crappie at the nearby White Rock Lake.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Our story is truly a culmination of the support and encouragement of so many important people in our lives. One of the most important categories of people have been our patients. From dental school and residency onwards, each patient who we treated has encouraged us to become better, more educated, more caring providers of dental and orthodontic care. Dr. Eli has a file dedicated to artwork that his patients have gifted him through the years, and it is among some of his most treasured possessions. Our orthodontic teams of assistants, treatment coordinators, office managers, and front staff have also played a crucial role in our dreams to own and operate our own clinic, giving us the input to shape a business from the views of its employees. Lastly, our family, friends, and spouses have kept us moving forward through the challenges and heartbreak of business ownership and complex patient cases. Without any of these people, we would have never made it this far on our journey.

Website: www.lvlortho.com

Instagram: lvlorthodontics

Facebook: LVL Orthodontics

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