By Amber Mabe
As young people, we are often inspired by the legacy of family members to do something great with our lives. For Dr. Carrie Bell, that inspiration came from watching her grandparents, and the impact they had on the people around them. Dr. Bell had the unique opportunity to grow up in a family that valued both music and dentistry. Her grandfather was a dentist who served in their community for nearly fifty years, and her grandmother was a piano teacher. Dr. Bell says the two passions have always gone hand in hand for her. “I definitely see them as connected,” she says. “You are creating something that is really beautiful, and it takes a lot of time and effort to build those skills. There is very much an artistry to orthodontics. The more effort you put into honing your skills, and the more diligent you are with that, the better the outcome for your patients.”
Dr. Bell studied both music and dentistry as an undergrad and continued to pursue her training through dental school and a residency at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center. Her continued devotion to both music and her orthodontic practice have worked together to develop her skills, earning her not only a satisfied customer base, but also several prestigious honors and awards. Her transition to working with Drs. Mitchell and Bartlett has been a fantastic experience, as Dr. Bell says she loves her patients and the opportunity to live and work in Kernersville. “You never really meet a stranger in Kernersville,” she says, “there are so many kind, genuine, hardworking people. It is very comfortable and reminds me of home.”
As excited as Dr. Bell was to join the Mitchell, Bartlett & Bell Orthodontics family, perhaps even more exciting was the recent addition to her own family through the birth of her youngest child this spring. She and her husband also have a two-and-a-half-year-old son. Dr. Bell says she feels blessed to have Drs. Mitchell and Bartlett as her partners, as their support and emphasis on family have allowed her to spend time with her family during this transition. Although the world looks a little bit different than it did when Dr. Bell left for maternity leave, she says she is excited to get back to work. “I miss being with my coworkers, I miss being with my partners, and I am excited to get back to my patients,” she says. The staff at Mitchell, Bartlett & Bell Orthodontics have been working tirelessly to ensure that patients will still receive the same level of personalized care even with the procedure changes that have become necessary. “It is going to look different for a long time,” Dr. Bell says. “There is a lot of negativity in the world right now, so I am excited to get back to patient care. Orthodontics is such an amazing job because it allows me to spread joy and happiness. It really is something special!”
Not only do Dr. Bell and her colleagues put an emphasis on family in their personal lives, but also in their practice. Orthodontic treatment can often become a family affair, with parents choosing to get treated alongside their children, siblings experiencing braces at the same time, and sometimes even grandparents joining in. Drs. Mitchell, Bartlett and Bell have treated patients in their upper 80’s all the way down to children who still have their baby teeth. Dr. Bell encourages people not to think of orthodontic treatment as a luxury or something that should be put on the back burner. “Some people see it as purely cosmetic,” she says, “but we have patients all the time who have a lot of difficulty with their bite, or TMJ, or other problems.” She says proper orthodontic treatment can go a long way in improving not only a person’s confidence in their smile, but also their quality of life. She says one of her favorite parts of her job is the day the braces come off and a new smile is revealed. “It can change a person’s entire personality. It is really unbelievable.”
A large part of what makes Mitchell, Bartlett & Bell Orthodontics an outstanding practice is their commitment to constantly furthering their training and technology. “We are really high tech,” Dr. Bell says, listing 3D radiographs and digital scanning technology as some of the most recent additions to the technology available to their patients. “We strive to always be as educated and up-to-date for our patients as we can be.”
At Mitchell, Bartlett & Bell Orthodontics, each patient is a high priority. Unlike some practices that may see twice the number of patients per day, Dr. Bell and her partners like to take a more hands-on approach, getting to know their patients and spending time with each one. “It is a very precise work,” says Dr. Bell, “you are looking for specific movements of the teeth and changes in a smile, and you have to train your eye to see it.” Dr. Bell and her partners take great pride and joy in crafting beautiful smiles tailored for each individual, and in the happiness and confidence their patients experience when treatment is completed. Patients who may have been told in the past that they need difficult or even surgical procedures often are able to find less invasive or time-consuming methods that will work with their lifestyle. Younger patients have increased opportunities for early intervention methods that will prevent difficult treatments in the future. “We try to be really open minded while trying to give people the best options,” she says. “And then we give them the best treatment that we can.”
If you have been considering orthodontic treatment for you or one of your loved ones, Drs. Mitchell, Bartlett, and Bell are waiting to help you and your family create smiles that will last a lifetime. To schedule a consultation contact them at 336.992.2520 or visit their website: mbsmiles.com.