By John McGurl
Now, Wesley Chapel residents have even more to smile about, thanks to the orthodontic expertise of Dr. Steven Dau, DMD, of Dau Orthodontics. With the addition of his new orthodontic office located on S.R. 54 in Lutz, just two miles east of Wesley Chapel, Dr. Dau is bringing bigger and straighter smiles to even more area residents. Dr. Dau has been providing residents with skilled work at his first office in the Cory Lake Isles Professional Center on Cross Creek Blvd. in New Tampa for the past six years.
“(Lutz) is a relaxing environment,” says Dr. Dau of the family-friendly area that he feels is a comfortable spot for his expanded practice.
A native of Vietnam who was one of thousands of Vietnamese boat people who escaped that country following the Vietnam War, Dr. Dau received his Doctorate of Dental Medicine degree from the University of Florida. He also holds a Master of Science degree in Dentistry from Saint Louis University in St. Louis, MO., and a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of South Florida.
Although traditional orthodontic care doesn’t usually begin until the ages of 12-14, Dr. Dau recommends patients come to see him between the ages of eight and ten — not for braces, but instead to set a plan for a healthy smile. He emphasizes the importance of planning a comfortable treatment, rather than forcibly trying to align teeth in place. At those early ages, a retainer may be recommended or possibly some baby teeth being pulled. Actual treatment with braces would still not usually start until between the ages of 12 and 14.
“I don’t like starting braces early,” Dau says, adding that he prefers to only have to put someone through braces one time in their lives.
Dau Orthodontics uses the Damon® Braces System for most patients. He says Damon, a U.S.-based company, engineers a higher-quality and more technologically-advanced brace that is self-ligating, which in laymen’s terms means that no painful ties or chains are used. He adds that the Damon braces provide a constant, gentle force. They also are more time efficient; adjustments are only needed every two months, compared with every month for the average brace. Adjustments also are simpler, making visits to the office shorter and easier on both patients and parents. The average orthodontic treatment still spans about a year and a half, with most treatments lasting no longer than two years. Damon braces make use of a clip system rather than the traditional elastic bands to hold the wires in place, which Dr. Dau says makes the adjustments much quicker.
The practice does offer offers “Invisalign®” braces, although Dr. Dau says he prefers the traditional braces method, because, “they get better results.” Invisalign is a popular choice for those who don’t want to have to have a “mouth full of metal,” as it is a clear brace system that can be removed daily, custom molded for each patient. Invisalign braces are appealing to anyone who may be embarrassed by traditional braces.
Whichever system is used, Dau says his practice is about helping people feel better about themselves.
“To me the mouth is like a canvas, because I can mold it into what I want it to be,” he says. While ordinary dentistry is more about regular maintenance, orthodontics allows Dr. Dau to build relationships with his patients.
George K., one of Dr. Dau’s happy patients says, “Dr. Dau really seems to care about my concerns and comfort as a patient. He always treats me with respect and explains my orthodontic care in a way that I understand. His staff is great; (they’re) always nice, smiling, and seem happy to see me and note how well we are doing with my braces.”
Dr. Dau is committed to providing the best care for his patients. At DauSmiles.com, there is a very helpful weekly blog that offers information on not only dental care, but also “Ask Dr. Dau” segments, and even social media updates. The friendly and professional staff at Dau Orthodontics is dedicated to staying connected with patients in every possible way, whether it’s the weekly blog, the office’s Facebook fan page, or just by answering questions on the phone.
Dr. Dau is certified by the American Board of Orthodontics, which is the only orthodontic specialty board recognized by the American Association of Orthodontists. He also is an active member of the American Association of Orthodontists, Southern Association of Orthodontists, American Dental Association, Florida Dental Association and Hillsborough County Dental Association.
Dr. Dau is an active member in the community. He sponsors various youth sport leagues and also is an active member of the New Tampa Noon Rotary Club. He has participated in missionary trips to Haiti to provide dental care to local villagers and is a partner of the New Tampa chapter of the “Smile For a Lifetime Foundation.” Recipients of these “My Braces” scholarships from this organization are covered for the complete cost of an orthodontic treatment.
For additional information, call the Lutz office (21774 SR 54) of Dau Orthodontics at 909-8200. For the New Tampa office (10353 Cross Creek Blvd., Suite A), call 929-3361. You also can visit online at DauSmiles.com.