Building World-Class Smiles Is a Local Family’s Legacy
When Dr. Charles Smaha moved to Macon to open his orthodontics practice in 1972, little did he realize that his practice would touch the lives of generations of local families, including his own. Dr. Smaha was a husband and new father, having just finished his orthodontics residency at the Medical College of Georgia and was simply embarking on his career. He was of a new generation that viewed his craft, the specialty of orthodontics, in a much broader sense than just “moving teeth.” He was passionate about engineering faces and building self-esteem in his patients, and this revolutionary approach would pave the way for huge advancements, both in terms of orthodontic technology and the impact it makes to millions today. This longview of what his practice would mean was far more philosophical than practical in those early days.
“I was really just focused on my patients, trying to provide the best quality of care and customer service. I learned early on to treat each person uniquely, adjusting the care that I provided them around their unique concerns. I think that alone was probably the revolutionary part, what I was doing differently than other orthodontists. I was listening to my patients’ needs, not just dictating their course of treatment,” says Dr. Smaha. This adherence to quality of care and personalized orthodontic treatment quickly proved to be the secrets to Smaha Orthodontics’ success.
Dr. Ched Smaha, Charles’ son, was so inspired by his father’s passion and approach that he joined his father in practice after completing dental school and orthodontic residency in 2005. “My father was friends with everyone in town, having treated them or their children. And the way that he made a difference in their lives…I knew that this was what I wanted to be and do,” states Dr. Ched.
“I learned early on to treat each person uniquely, adjusting the care that I provided them around their unique concerns.”
And today Ched, now the managing partner, maintains a dedication to the same principles that have made Smaha Orthodontics a staple of quality.
Dr. Ched continues, “Everything that we do starts and ends with customer service. We want our patients’ time in treatment to be a legendary, life-changing experience. That means not only achieving perfect smiles, but making the path to those smiles thoroughly enjoyable. So we invest in technology to keep us cutting edge and in continuing education to learn techniques that maximize the comfort of orthodontics while reducing the time it takes to finish.”
But while this investment into the practice bears significant cost, it also means that orthodontic treatment is more affordable now than at any time before. “My father and I have always believed that finances should not get in the way of someone achieving the smile of their dreams,” offers Dr. Ched. “The newer technologies that we bring to Macon, Warner Robins, and Forsyth mean that patients finish treatment faster. This time savings pays for itself. As such, orthodontic treatment is less costly to the patient now than it was when my father first opened when taking inflation into account.”
Even with all the vacillations in healthcare over the past decade, orthodontics is now, more than ever, within the reach of the masses. The governing body of orthodontics, the AAO, posits that 30% of patients today are adults. “What this tells us is that people for whom orthodontics wasn’t an option decades ago, can now realize the smile and con dence that they’ve wanted,” offers Dr. Charles. “We even see that most dental health plans now include some amount of orthodontic benefits, where it wasn’t when I began my practice.”
At the core of the discussion about Smaha Orthodontics is the aforementioned “secret formula” pioneered by Dr. Charles and continued by Dr. Ched today. The legacy that the Smaha family has conferred upon the communities they serve is not just about straight teeth. It is about self-esteem and joy. “We will always strive to provide the best quality of care available, that’s a given,” states Dr. Ched. “But by focusing the unique patient we can help build the confidence that will empower them throughout their lives. That is what matters most to my father and me.”
Dr. Charles Smaha concludes, “Our entire team is part of this community. We are neighbors, family, and friends with all of our patients. So each of us take it as a point of pride to do more than what is expected. That is what makes Smaha Orthodontics stand apart.”