Changing Lives One Smile at a Time with SureSmile®
by Ellen Parsons
Dr. Lisa Stokes understands firsthand how important a smile can be. She is blessed and she knows it. Just mention her loving husband, two beautiful kids, and thriving orthodontics practice to see a radiant smile light up her face—a smile she is fortunate to have.
Lisa Stokes couldn’t smile for a long, long time. Born with a unilateral cleft lip and palate, she underwent four surgeries after her birth before her parents were allowed to take her home from the hospital. The severity of the birth defect meant years of treatment by physicians and maxillofacial specialists, many of whom lacked compassion.
She survived 14 painful reconstructive surgeries (the last one in 2000) requiring bone grafts from her skull, hip and ribs. She endured childhood ridicule and nearly five years of braces to correct horribly crooked teeth caused by her anomaly. But Stokes wouldn’t change a thing. “Everyone has a choice to make about the past. We can choose to be bitter or we can choose to be better,” she said. “I see my birth defect as a huge gift from God, and I am grateful for how He used it to make me who I am today.”
Who she is today is an orthodontist who graduated third in her dental class and with honors from her orthodontic residency, both from the University of Texas Dental Branch in Houston. An active member of numerous national professional organizations and a frequent speaker, Stokes has won several academic, professional and community awards.
Faith, Family, Community
Faith, family and community have always been important to her. In 1996 Stokes married her high school sweetheart, Jerry, a personal trainer who was adopted as a child. They moved to Sherman in 1998, where she bought the practice of Dr. William Robinson, who retired shortly thereafter.
Because they value life and believe God makes families in different ways, they adopted their first child, Emma, when she was an infant. Now six, she’s a kindergartner. Their son, Griffin, was born to them three years ago.
Stokes’ community involvement is extensive. She sponsors field trips to her office, sends staff to speak at schools, employs high school students to encourage them to consider medical/dental careers, and provides scholarships. She also contributes to numerous local and national charities benefitting children.
Her community involvement is an active expression of Stokes’ Christian faith. A member of Sherman Bible Church, she believes her practice is a ministry. Its mission is to serve. All of these things have shaped her practice philosophy—the patient always comes first.
During their first appointments, patients are told: “We want to serve you well.” SureSmile® is only one aspect of that patient-centered service. A comfortable, efficient office is another. Wonderful staff members complete the picture.
A beautiful smile is a sure thing with SureSmile, a digital orthodontics process available locally exclusively to patients of Stokes Orthodontics in Sherman.
The innovative, cutting-edge technology enables Stokes and her staff to provide each patient with a personalized treatment plan that includes shorter treatment times, fewer office visits, and less overall discomfort.
Through SureSmile’s sophisticated 3-D imaging system and customized precision archwires, Stokes can more accurately analyze patients’ needs, plan the best treatment, and maximize therapeutic efficiency for optimal results.
“This non-invasive technology changes lives every day and improves quality of life by allowing us to treat patients virtually when they aren’t in the offi ce and physically when they are,” she said. Virtual treatment begins when detailed scans of a patient’s face and teeth are uploaded into SureSmile’s software program. Stokes then determines appropriate treatment by digitally maneuvering those 3-D scans. From that digital evaluation, she designs customized archwires that are significantly more effective than the stock wires associated with traditional braces. This means patients physically spend less time in her office for adjustments and less time in braces.
“SureSmile patients spend about 12 months in braces rather than the two-and-a-half years incurred by those with old-fashioned braces,” Stokes said. “It’s healthier for teeth to move as little as possible. SureSmile helps us do that with better precision.”
As the only practice to offer SureSmile technology between Dallas and Edmond, Oklahoma, Stokes Orthodontics is delighted to recommend this option to Texoma residents.
Stokes and her staff underwent rigorous training in 2006 to implement the process, and regularly undergo continuing education to update their knowledge and skill. During the transition from offering conventional to SureSmile braces, half her patients immediately switched to SureSmile. Now every patient is a SureSmile patient.
“As a mom, I am thrilled to know the latest technology is available right here in Texoma. You don’t have to drive to Dallas to get it,” she said. “As an orthodontist, I know SureSmile is the best available. It’s a sure thing for a great smile.” Just before Christmas, Stokes Orthodontics moved into its new building at 2921 Heritage Parkway (FM 1417). On a hilltop among trees, plentiful parking surrounds the Austin stone edifice.
New Facility Offers Home Style Comfort
Inside, the spacious reception area welcomes all who enter. Reminiscent of a Parisian café, the room features plush sofas, oversized chairs and bistro tables. Elegant flooring, huge windows, embroidered draperies and a fountain finish the room. The nearby children’s waiting area features books, toys, a flat-screen television, and the latest electronic games.
A separate adults-only lounge offers Internet access and its own flat-screen TV. A high-tech check-in station, well-stocked tooth-brushing station, and patients-only lounge (with its own electronic games, television and reading materials) keep patients entertained until exams begin.
While the office itself is pleasant, Stokes believes her amazing staff members are the lifeblood of the practice; everything they do is patient-focused. They ensure patients’ needs are met professionally and compassionately. More importantly, they serve patients by loving them and praying for them regularly.
“We do more than straighten teeth. We build relationships,” Stokes said. “Changing lives one smile at a time is our legacy.”
Dr. Lisa Stokes, DDS, MS, PA
2921 Heritage Parkway
Sherman, Texas 75092