Posted 1/30/13 (Wed)
By Kate Ruggles
Farmer Staff Writer
The days of driving to Williston or waiting for an opening for dental care will soon be over for Watford City area residents. Joy Dental Design, a dental practice based in Hazen, N.D., is days away from opening a full-time dental care office in Watford City.
Joy Dental Design has a practice in Hazen and according to CEO Michael Jelsing, both the Hazen office and their new Watford City location take somewhat of a different approach to dentistry.
“We specialize in gentle dental care,” states Jelsing, who acknowledges that no one looks forward to going to the dentist and praises his wife, one of the two Joy Dental Design Doctors, for her anxiety-reducing dentistry concept.
“Everything we do is about taking down the anxiety people have about visiting the dentist,” Jelsing states.
From the moment people walk through Joy Dental’s doors, Jelsing claims that relaxing music and a mellow atmosphere will help calm the nerves their patients may feel about visiting their office. In addition, Joy Dental Design has installed new, state-of-the-art, massaging dental exam chairs into each exam room.
“Both our Hazen and Watford City office focus on reducing anxiety because we want people to feel comfortable when they come to our offices,” states Jelsing.
Joy Dental Design’s new Watford City office also takes a cutting-edge approach to the other aspects of their dentistry business in offering completely digital records and X-rays.
According to Jelsing, the benefits of a digital dental approach are two-fold. The first benefit has to do with efficiency and the second deals with patient safety.
“Because we operate digitally, all patient records can be transmitted via e-mail,” Jelsing states. “Gone are the days of patients having to take records with them when they are referred to another office for dental work. Now they can be transmitted to that office electronically, which allows us and them to provide more efficient patient care.”
Plus, a digital dental approach allows Joy Dental Design to provide lower radiation x-rays to their patients.
“Our new dental x-ray machine is actually hand-held and portable, and it uses less radiation when taking an x-ray, because it creates a digital image rather than imprinting an X-ray,” Jelsing states.
Joy Dental Design’s Watford City office will consist of one full-time dentist, Dr. Narek Ovsepian, and one part-time dentist, Jelsing’s wife Priscila, who will spend Monday through Thursday working in Joy Dental’s Hazen office and Fridays working in Watford City.
Jelsing states that Dr. Ovsepian comes to Watford City with five years of experience and that Jelsing’s wife, Priscila, is also a general dentist with nine years experience who has been practicing orthodontics in the Hazen office and will bring that expertise with her to Joy Dental Design’s Watford City location.
Joy Dental will also staff a full-time hygienist who is one semester from obtaining her bachelor’s degree in Dental Hygiene.
Jelsing is excited to be opening a second dental office in the Watford City area. He not only feels passionately about dental care, but states that when his team heard of the needs in Watford City they wanted to help.
“When we heard that Watford City’s population had tripled over the last two years and they were only being served by one part-time dental office, we knew we wanted to help,” states Jelsing. “Over 50 percent of the dentists in North Dakota are over the age of 50, which means that in the next 10 years North Dakota will lose over half of their dentists. Therefore, it comes down to the people and serving the community.”
Jelsing and his wife also take their passion for meeting dental care needs to a different level through a non-profit charity they run in addition to their business.
“There are people that can afford dental care either because they have enough money or because their insurance pays for it. And there are people that receive dental care through the state. Then there are people that fall in the middle,” states Jelsing.
For those who cannot afford dental care and for those who cannot receive dental care through state programs, Jelsing and his wife provide a free clinic where they offer free exams and donate dental work. This is done once a year, according to Jelsing and is for those in the community who fall in the ‘gap.’
Jelsing states that Joy Dental Design will file all insurances and offer same-day emergency dental service.
“If you are in pain, we will not make you wait a week to be seen. We will see you that same day,” Jelsing states.
Joy Dental Design will open on Monday, Feb. 4 and is already accepting appointments. For the month of February, Joy Dental’s Watford City office will be giving away free dental exams, where they will check for cavities, gum disease, joint problems, orthodontic treatment needs and oral cancer.
They are located at 324 3rd Street Northwest in Watford City and can be reached at 701-842-6197.