About Our Office

International Volunteer Day

December 2nd, 2020

December 5th is International Volunteer Day and we thought it would be fun to highlight different volunteer organizations that our team members contribute to in our community.


Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Rhonda and her husband volunteer with the Fort Wayne chapter of Sleep in Heavenly Peace. SHP utilizes groups of volunteers to build bunk beds and deliver them to children, who don’t currently have a bed, in the greater Fort Wayne area. On build days, you might be cutting, pre-drilling or sanding the pieces of wood, pre-assembling the head and footboards, or branding them with the SHP logo. Rhonda’s main responsibility is to vet the applicants and schedule the deliveries. During the deliveries they provide the children with complete beds including a mattress and bedding. They assemble the bunks and make the beds; it is so rewarding to see the happiness in their faces and to know that they won’t be sleeping on a couch or the floor that night.

International Volunteer Day - Orthodontic Specialty Services | Dr. Aron Dellinger

For more information on Sleep in Heavenly Peace click here.


Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Robin volunteers with CASA of Kosciusko County. CASA stands for Court Appointed Special Advocate (for children). The CASA is a trained citizen who is appointed by a judge to represent the best interest of a child in court. They provide the judge with a carefully researched background of the child to help the court make a sound decision about that child’s future.  Robin’s caring spirit makes her a perfect fit for being a CASA volunteer.

For more information visit CASA's website.


Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Marissa participates in Boomerang Backpack for Churubusco students K-12. Each month churches in her community send small snacks or meals home to students in need. It is packed once a week and the student takes the backpack home on Friday.  Marissa said, "It gives the volunteers good fellowship time together!". She's grateful that our office has chosen to participate by donating toothbrushes, toothpaste and floss for the last couple of years.

For more information on Boomerang Backpack click here.


One of the organizations Dr. Aron has worked with for nearly his entire career is a Cleft Palate and Craniofacial Team/Clinic called “Kids First”.

The Kids First Clinic meets at both Parkview and Lutheran hospitals in Fort Wayne on alternating first Fridays of each month (unfortunately the team has not been able to meet during COVID). The clinic/team is comprised of various health professionals who will spend time diagnosing and advising treatment options for cleft palate individuals, and other patients who have structural/developmental issues involving the head and face. The consultations and services provided directly in this clinic are fully donated by the doctors and other healthcare professionals on the team. [There is a minimal hospital processing charge that is necessary for the hospitals to comply with insurance and to cover cleaning and disposable items used by the clinic.] The hospitals donate the space for the clinic and also donate the time of their nursing staff and others who serve the team.

Because the patients have multiple health needs the team is diverse in training and background. We have pediatric dentists, orthodontists, oral surgeons, and dental assistants working the dental aspects of these cases. Plastic surgeons perform the facial reconstructions, lip and nose surgeries, and palatal repairs. Ear nose and throat physicians treat the hearing problems, nasal, sinus, and airway issues. Dieticians assist with feeding issues of new born cleft babies and assist with nutritional concerns as the patients grow and mature. Speech pathologists also help with feeding issues and provide speech and language skill therapies to help the patients compensate for their structural challenges. There are also social workers who help families find ways to obtain services and other resources that are needed for the patients to achieve successful outcomes.

On clinic days, all of the various specialties perform their individual assessments for each patient. Then the team meets as a whole to discuss immediate and long term needs for those patients. This timely sharing of information between specialists and the ability to discuss details with one another allows us to prioritize and sequence the order of events that will provide the best outcome for our patients.


International Volunteer Day - Orthodontic Specialty Services | Dr. Aron Dellinger

Various team members from our office volunteered with Mission of Mercy at their last event. Mission of Mercy (MoM) is a large scale dental clinic that provides dental care for people of all ages who otherwise wouldn't be able to afford it. The MoM clinics take place every 2 years and the most recent clinic took place in 2019 at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum. Our team was able to use our unique talents/skills from completing restorations, helping create dental prosthetics and helping keep paperwork and patient flow organized.

For more information on Mission of Mercy click here.


Heather French Henry said, "Volunteering is at the very core of being a human. No one has made it through life without someone else's help.". We would love to hear about the organizations you volunteer with. Leave us a comment below or visit our Facebook page and leave a comment there.

Celebrating Kristine!

November 18th, 2020

You may remember our blog post series last year where we celebrated each team member on their OSS anniversary. Kristine is celebrating her first anniversary with OSS this month, and we couldn't leave her out...so we are bringing back the series to celebrate her!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Kristine was actually a part of our clinic team from 2013 to 2017. During those years, she got married and started a family. After her second child was born, she decided to stay at home with her two littles. In 2019, she was ready to rejoin our team.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

She currently works at the front desk on Fridays at our Dupont Road location. She also has the time consuming and painstakingly detailed job of staying up-to-date on the ins and outs of HIPAA. [Fun Fact: we actually have 5 team members, including Kristine, that have take a sabbatical during their career with OSS.]

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Kristine lives in Ohio, is a busy wife and mom of three young kids (ages range from 5 years to 7 months old). One of Kristine's biggest hobbies is taking photos. She says she is not a professional photographer by any means, but she takes "a ton of photos" of her family and she proudly displays them around her home. Reliving the memories through photographs is she something she greatly enjoys. Kristine also freely admits she has an "unhealthy obsession" with Kohl's, and she spends EVERY SINGLE Kohl's Cash she gets.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Kristine is hilarious and her laugh is contagious. We're so grateful that she has rejoined our team and we appreciate all of her hard work. Biggest congrats, Kristine, on celebrating another year with OSS!

Continuing to Keep Our Patients, Parents, and Our Team Safe

October 9th, 2020

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic and official guidelines, it became necessary for us to implement a number of more time-consuming protocols including additional health questionnaires, temperature screening, increased sanitation of the facilities, social distancing, and a limit to the number of people in the office, just to name a few. This necessitated that we evaluate our previous practice of inviting parents into the clinic for every orthodontic appointment. We thoroughly enjoy building relationships with the entire family and are happy to be at a point where we are able to loosen some of our restrictions. We will be adding additional seating in our waiting areas (the coffee and games will remain out of service) and implementing the following guidelines for when parents will be invited into the clinic. For the safety of you and our team and the efficiency of our clinic, we ask that you please respect these requests and recommendations on when and how your presence can provide the best quality outcome, the most efficient utilization of time, and for us to keep sanitation protocols in place.


Appointment Type “A”

20 to 30 minute appointments

No parent will need to join the patient in the clinic; a clinic tech will come to the parking lot or reception area or call you to communicate pertinent information at the end of the appointment. For our adult patients, we ask that you leave other family members at home or under supervision in the reception area or parking lot.


Appointment Type “B”

30 to 80 minute appointments

Depending upon the type of appointment, for parents, you will be invited to join your child in the clinic at either the start or at the end of the appointment to receive instructions and details of upcoming appointments. For the bulk of the appointment, you can remain in your car or the reception area to relax.


With only the patient in the clinic during types A and B, it will accelerate the clinical process and doctor and technician efficiency. It will help us to maintain an on-time schedule and shorten appointment times. As a parent, it will shorten your time in the office and in some cases; you will be able to run other errands while your child is in the office.


Appointment Type “C”

Procedures involving local anesthetic (i.e. extractions of primary teeth, lasers, temporary anchorage device placements, etc.)

For parents, your presence chairside during these appointments should be dictated by individual patient needs, considering all levels of anxiety, patient age and maturity. We have found that some highly anxious patients do best in the absence of parents. We have also noticed that some feel grounded and secure when a parent is present. We will guide you on what we feel is best.

Many type C appointments dovetail with a type A or B appointment. Instructions will be given at the completion of the C portion. It is encouraged that after instructions are given, the parent return to the car or to the reception area to wait for the completion of the type A or B portion of the appointment.


Based on the recommended protocol for our practice, it is best for the entire family, other patients and our team that the number of persons in the clinic is minimized. If at all possible, siblings and children of adult patients should not be present during any part of an appointment.

The front desk and/or clinic techs will inform you of the appointment type and your recommended involvement at each visit. We will never deny you the right and obligation as a parent to be present during any portion of the orthodontic process. However, we do ask again that you respect our recommendations on when and how your presence can provide the best quality outcome, the most efficient utilization of time, and the safety precautions to keep everyone healthy. These measures are tailored to current circumstances and could be modified as health risk and state regulations continue to change.

Thank You, Dr. Aron Dellinger and the OSS Team

Celebrating Kelly!

August 5th, 2020

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Last August, we started sharing OSS anniversaries and allowed you to learn more about most of our amazing team. We saved the most difficult for last: Kelly celebrated her 16th anniversary earlier this summer. Kelly’s celebration is the most “difficult” because she is our social media coordinator and the one who always writes these blog posts. She has a gift when it comes to social media, so there are big shoes to fill when writing a post about her.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Kelly started her career with OSS as a clinic tech and volunteered with the Kids First Cleft Palate team. She has a huge heart for our cleft patients and they love her in return. You will most often see her in the clinic at our Warsaw office, since it’s only a 45 minute drive from her home. Several years ago we asked Kelly to fill-in as our social media coordinator while a team member was on maternity leave and she has never looked back. Kelly is responsible for our all of our social media posts (Facebook, Instagram, etc.), maintaining our website (including 2 major overhauls), writing and/or editing blog posts, prompting Dr. Aron to write posts, and much, much more. She puts her creative talents to use as part of our marketing team and you will often hear, “Hey Kelly, can you make a sign for us?  By the way, we need it tomorrow!”

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Kelly is a wife, a mother to a 12 year-old miracle, a dog mom to 2 sibling rescues and a cat mom to 3. Her son was born at 26 weeks and weighed less than 2 pounds; if you were to see him today, you’d never have any clue. Her husband’s family owns a restaurant and you just might see Kelly working in the kitchen on Fridays. If you love fish, you need to ask for her recommendation.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Kelly’s true second career is scrapbooking….only it’s not a normal person’s scrapbooking. It’s creating YouTube videos and blog posts about her techniques (she has over 1500 followers on her YouTube channel), being selected to serve on multiple design teams, participating in scrapbooking blog hops, and creating the most beautiful pages you can imagine. I don’t know how she fits it into her day when she drives for 90 minutes, is at the office for 9 ½ hours, takes care of her husband, son and furry family members and loves on her nearby family.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Kelly is a “go to” team member; she takes morning huddle notes to communicate daily updates via email to the entire team. She is conscientious regarding how information is shared with our team and truly makes sure that our #1 team principle (communication) is always on point. She is compassionate from the top of her head to the tips of her toes and has an infectious laugh. We are blessed beyond measure to have her on our team. Thanks Kelly! Here’s to 16 more years….

Back to School Contest

July 30th, 2020

It's hard to believe that summer is almost over, but we've got your covered when it comes to purchasing your back to school supplies! We have a contest happening on our Facebook Page giving away this entire bundle.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Facebook Contest

All you have to do is head to our Facebook Page and guess the weight of all the items pictured above (+ $25 Kohl's Gift Card). The person closest to the correct weight wins the entire bundle.

Complete List of Items:

• 1 Adidas Bookbag
• 1 Box of 12 Colored Pencils
• 8 Glue Sticks
• 5 Dry Erase Markers
• 1 Box of 10 Crayola Markers
• 1 Pencil Box
• 1 Water Bottle
• 1 bottle of Elmer's Glue
• 1 Travel Kleenex
• 1 Eraser
• 1 Chapstick
• 1 Box of 24 Crayola Crayons
• 1 Pack of 100 Index Cards
• 1 Mask
• 1 Lanyard
• 2 Pencil Pouches
• 1 Composition Notebook
• 1 Spiral Notebook
• 1 Pack of 150 Loose Leaf Paper
• 1 Pencil Sharpener
• 103 #2 Pencils
• 5 Ink Pens
• 2 Travel Hand Sanitizers
• 1 Toothbrush + 1 Travel Toothpaste
• 4 Highlighters
• 12 Mechanical Pencils
• $25 Kohl's Gift Card (not photographed)

This contest is happening from July 31, 2020 (7:00 AM)- August 4, 2020 (11:59 PM). All of the details on how to enter and how to claim the prize is located on our Facebook Page.

Celebrating Paula!

July 22nd, 2020

Paula recently celebrated 15 YEARS with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

If you've never visited our Dupont Road location then you may have never had the pleasure of meeting Paula. Paula joined our team in 2005 and is part of our financial team as well as handling many of our “secretarial” (isn’t that an outdated term)  duties.  She is one of our main contacts with insurance companies; she verifies benefits and follows-up on outstanding claims.  She also processes a majority of our outgoing correspondence.  For many years, she was Dr. Gene’s right-hand and he greatly appreciated her compassionate attention to his outside appointments, travel arrangements and dinner reservations.

Paula was raised in Fort Wayne, except for the three years she lived in Chicago as a young child. She started working at the age of 15 in a downtown Fort Wayne restaurant, Hobby House. She said most of us have probably never heard of it, but she's sure you know someone else who worked there...Dave Thomas - the founder of the Wendy's fast food franchise. He was a baker at Hobby House before Wendy's was even thought of! Paula attended Snider High School and Ivy Tech for college. She graduated as a Medical Secretary; which is now referred to as an "administrative clerk".

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Paula enjoys riding bikes, going for walks and traveling; especially to anywhere that is warm. She visits her sister, who resides in Florida, every chance she gets. Paula has been married to her husband, Kirk, for 29 years. She has 5 children and 14 grandchildren. She's grateful that she gets to see them often and greatly enjoys their family get-togethers. Kirk and Paula also have a toy poodle, Daisy, who is "in charge" of their home!

Paula enjoys her sewing room immensely, and sometimes even get projects completed! Her favorite past time (aka: therapy) is shopping for fabric. She's always telling Kirk that she's planning for retirement with all her fabric...just in case she doesn’t have money when she retires. She enjoys revamping “vintage” furniture and she can't pass by an ice cream parlor...she prefers to stop and evaluate the product. HA!

Paula is a loyal friend and has a great laugh. We enjoy the spirit she brings to the office, and we appreciate all of the duties, both large and small, that she does on a daily basis. Congrats, Paula, on celebrating 15 YEARS with OSS!

Celebrating Anne Marie!

July 15th, 2020

Today we are celebrating Anne Marie's 32nd anniversary with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

We're thinking it too! Anne Marie can't possibly be old enough to have worked at OSS for 32 YEARS! Anne Marie started her career with OSS immediately after graduating from the IPFW Dental Assisting Program in 1988. Her first role at OSS was a TMD Clinic Tech working alongside Dr. Ketcham. She remained working as a clinic tech for 17 years and then transitioned to working at the front desk in 2005; which is where you will still find her today! She primarily works at our Dupont Road location, but you will see her from time to time at our Warsaw office.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Anne Marie was born, raised and still resides in Fort Wayne. She's the youngest of 7 kids and is close with all of her siblings to this day. She's been married to her high school sweetheart, Mike, for 31 years, is a mom to 4 awesome kids, and has 2 grand-dogs. Her favorite activities include reading from her Kindle, baking and she LOVES online shopping. She said her husband (who recently retired from being a UPS driver) rolls his eyes every time a package is delivered. This tells me that she may need an intervention! HA! Did you know that she recently had braces? She had her braces removed in 2019 after 14 months of treatment, so she now has a gorgeous OSS smile!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Anne Marie has the calmest, sweetest disposition; she is caring, genuine and just an all around great person. She is the influencer that everyone needs in their life; she always thinks the best of other individuals and gives them “the benefit of the doubt”, no matter what.  We are so blessed to have her as a part of our team. Biggest congrats, Anne Marie, on 32 YEARS with OSS. We appreciate you!

Celebrating Laurie!

July 8th, 2020

Today we are celebrating Laurie's 6th anniversary with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Laurie joined our team as our Marketing Coordinator in 2014. She has since transitioned into our Marketing Team Leader and one of our Treatment Coordinators. Those roles require her to juggle many balls in the air at once! As our Marketing Team Leader her main duties include: visiting general dentist offices, taking sponsorship and donations requests, ordering marketing supplies and organizing future marketing projects. As a Treatment Coordinator she is responsible for being Dr. Aron's translator! HA! She works closely with new patients and explains Dr. Aron’s treatment plan that will inspire a genuine OSS smile! That job is a big one because Dr. Aron meticulously and uniquely creates a treatment plan to meet each individual patient's needs.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Laurie was raised on a farm east of New Haven. [Fun fact: She started driving a truck and tractor at the age of ELEVEN! She questions what her dad was thinking! HA!] Laurie still takes care of the bookkeeping and she continues to drive a combine when she has free time.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Laurie is a wife and mom to three grown sons and she just welcomed her first grandbaby to the family.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

We can't forget her cute shih tzu, Molly. [She actually shares custody of Molly with a friend. The next time you see her be sure to ask her how that situation works!]

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Laurie is such a fun team member, has a contagious laugh, and we are all envious of her perfect hair! She's genuine, caring and down to earth. We know if you've met her then you love her too! Thank you, Laurie, for all you do and congrats on celebrating 6 YEARS with OSS!

Celebrating Annie!

July 1st, 2020

Annie recently celebrated her FIRST ANNIVERSARY with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Annie joined our team in 2019 immediately after graduating from the PFW Dental Assisting Program. We knew Annie was a hard worker and would fit well with our team after she visited our office during a student internship. We have many PFW assisting students complete a rotation in our office, but she clearly stood-out and got our attention.  Annie currently works full time as a member of our clinic team at both locations.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Annie was born, raised and still resides in Fort Wayne. She enjoys exercising, going to the lake and spending time with her boyfriend, Nick. She's very close with her family and loves spending time with her niece and nephews. (Gosh, look how cute they are!!).

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team  Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

We can't forget to tell you about her sweet Golden Doodle, Remi. Annie also works part time at a store in the Glenbrook Mall, so you may see her there from time to time.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Annie is sweet, fun and very compassionate. She has a HUGE heart and we love having her on our team! We appreciate you, Annie, and we look forward to celebrating many more anniversaries with you!

 

Celebrating Becca!

June 24th, 2020

Becca recently celebrated FIVE YEARS with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Becca joined our team in 2015 and works at both of our locations in the roles of a Clinic Tech and a Front Desk team member. Recently you may have seen her monitoring the parking lot to screen patients and obtain COVID forms. She also has the duties of organizing our CPR training and she calibrates our 3D CBCT x-ray machine and our intra-oral scanner. That calibration is important to ensure that both of those machines are working properly which makes the clinic move so much smoother!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Becca was raised in Columbia City and moved to Fort Wayne in 2012. She attended Ivy Tech for her prerequisites and then transferred to IPFW to attend the Dental Assisting Program. Becca had an internship with our office as a student and then joined our team immediately after graduation.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Becca is a wife and a mom to two young kiddos. She loves spending time outside and spending time with her large family. She recently purchased a Cricut and likes to craft when she has free time.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Now onto the fun facts:

• Becca is a TWIN!
• She has 6 sisters and a brother.
• She became a great-aunt at the age of 23!
• She could eat hot dogs every day! [I can hear her laughing as I type this, and if you know her then you are hearing her laugh too!]

Becca has a sweet smile that you won't forget! She's fun, caring and always willing to take on anything that is thrown her way. We are so grateful to have her on our team! BIGGEST CONGRATS, Becca, on celebrating 5 YEARS with OSS! We appreciate you!

Celebrating Ronda!

June 15th, 2020

Ronda is celebrating her 1st anniversary with OSS...well sort of! HA!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Ronda worked for OSS from 2000 to 2012 and she returned to our team in May 2019. Ronda has worked in the dental field her entire adult life. Her career has consisted of working as a hygienist assistant, an assistant for a general dentist and she's also worked at the front desk. Ronda has worked as a Clinic Tech during her entire career with OSS.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Ronda was born, raised and still resides in Ohio. She's the mom to four kids under the age of 17; including a set of twins. She loves spending time with her family, camping, attending her kids' sporting activities and just being outdoors in general. She collects lighthouses and has a large collection of Precious Moments figurines (including one signed from the Precious Moments designer, Sam Butcher).

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Ronda's laugh is contagious and she is a very hard worker. We are so blessed that she has returned to our team! Biggest congrats, Ronda, on celebrating another year with OSS!

Celebrating Marissa!

June 10th, 2020

Today we are celebrating Marissa's 18th anniversary with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Like many of our clinic team, Marissa visited our office during an internship as an IPFW Dental Assisting student. She started working at our office immediately after graduation in 2002. Marissa currently works as a Clinic Tech and also as our Clinic Team Leader. Clinic tech roles include: putting braces on teeth, bending and placing wires, taking impressions, fitting for appliances, taking x-rays, photos and intra-oral scans. Marissa's role as our Clinic Team Leader includes: helping Dr. Aron put together presentations for dental professionals and medical doctors. She puts together studies of the mechanics and materials we use in the office. She assists in interviewing new hires, handles clinic team performance reviews, coordinates job shadows and rotations for college student internships.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Marissa was raised in Churubusco and still resides in that area. She's married and a mom to two active kiddos. She enjoys spending time outdoors, time with family, and exercising. If it involves being outside then you can almost guarantee that she will be there!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Now onto some fun facts:

• Marissa did not have braces as child, but that changed in 2004. She now has a beautiful OSS smile and still continues to wear her retainers EVERY night!
• Marissa, her husband and two kids recently got dirt bikes. This is currently their favorite thing to do as family.
• She can run a bulldozer and once helped clear an entire field of trees.
• She can bait her own hook when fishing [but can she take the fish off the hook? HA!]
•She hates to fly [even on short trips], but took an extended visit to China several years ago.
• Marissa completed a triathlon in 2017 and finished 5th in her age group!  [You’ll often see her running during lunch hour – she’s addicted!]

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Marissa has the unique ability to be a leader and a friend simultaneously. She's a great listener, is sympathetic, gives advice when necessary and is one of those people that you know you can always turn to for anything. She's an amazing team member and we are SO grateful for all she does! Thank you, Marissa, for being you and for being such a huge blessing to the our team! Congrats on 18 YEARS with OSS!

Celebrating Amy!

June 3rd, 2020

Amy is celebrating 19 YEARS with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Amy started her career with OSS immediately after she graduated the IPFW Dental Assisting Program in 2001. Amy currently works as a Clinic Tech, but oversees many behind-the-scenes duties; including: training new clinic team members, keeping our office procedure/protocol manuals up-to-date, keeping our records room in order, and running OSHA water samples.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Amy was born, raised and still resides in Fort Wayne. She is a wife and a mom to two young children, Gavin (age 12) and Gracie (age 9).

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Amy is an avid crafter and actually owns a small side business, Gorgeous Gracie's Boutique, making and selling hair bows, headbands, etc. If you like to attend craft shows then you have probably seen her there! Amy also enjoys spending time on Hamilton Lake with her family and friends.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Amy is one of those people who just automatically puts you at ease! She's talented, creative and a great teammate! We are so blessed to have her as a member of the OSS family! Congrats, Amy, on celebrating 19 YEARS with OSS!

Celebrating Sandi!

May 6th, 2020

Sandi is celebrating 25 YEARS with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Sandi was born and raised in Fort Wayne, but moved to Ohio in 1995 when she got married. She attended Bishop Luers High School and IPFW, where she graduated with a Dental Assisting Certificate in 1984. Sandi worked in general dentistry for two years before making the move to orthodontics in 1986.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Sandi currently works as a Clinic Tech and also covers sterilization on Thursdays at our Warsaw location. She has a knack for paying attention to details, so she is responsible for tracking patients’ estimated completion dates and coordinating records for patients who are moving to or from our area.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

She's a wife, a mom to four grown kids and a grandma to TWELVE! She loves spending time with her family and attending car show events showing-off their Mustang GT and 1929 Model A Tudor.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Now some fun facts about Sandi:

• She graduated from the Dental Assisting Program with another team member, Whendy.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

• Her immediate family (her siblings & their children + her own children/grandchildren) equals 84 people!
• She likes to read Christian literature.
• She also helps with the youth in her church, and coordinated Vacation Bible School for a number of years.
• Her dream vacation destinations are Greece & Australia.
• She is currently learning Italian with her daughter-in-law.

Sandi is the type of person who would give the shirt off her back to anyone. She's a fun team member who regularly helps plan baby/wedding showers, birthday celebrations, etc. She is a vital member of our team and we are so grateful for all she does! Thank you, Sandi, and congrats on celebrating 25 YEARS with OSS!

COVID-19 Office Update

April 26th, 2020

Our community has been through a lot over the last few months, and all of us are looking forward to resuming our normal habits and routines. While many things have changed, one thing has remained the same: our commitment to your safety.

Infection control has always been a top priority for our practice and you may have seen this during your visits to our office. Our infection control processes are made so that when you receive care, it’s both safe and comfortable. We want to tell you about the infection control procedures we follow in our practice to keep patients and staff safe.

Our office follows infection control recommendations made by the American Dental Association (ADA), the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). We follow the activities of these agencies so that we are up-to-date on any new rulings or guidance that may be issued. We do this to make sure that our infection control procedures are current and adhere to each agencies’ recommendations.

We are resuming most appointments on April 27th and you may see some changes at your next visit. We made these changes to help protect our patients and staff. For example:

• We will ask you to complete a COVID-19 Informed Consent and a COVID-19 health questionnaire prior to your appointment. [Links to these forms are posted below]

• We will ask that you text us when you arrive and wait in your vehicle.

• We ask that only the patient enter the building, if at all possible.

• We have hand sanitizer that we will ask you to use when you enter the office and we will take a screening temperature.

• You may see that our waiting room will no longer offer magazines, children’s toys and so forth, since those items are difficult to clean and disinfect.

• Appointments will be managed to allow for social distancing between patients. That might mean that you’re offered fewer options for scheduling your appointment.

• We will do our best to allow greater time between patients to reduce waiting times for you, as well as to reduce the number of patients in the building at any one time.

We look forward to seeing you again and are happy to answer any questions you may have about the steps we take to keep you, your family and every patient, safe in our practice. We will be contacting you to reschedule any postponed appointments.


LINKS TO COVID-19 FORMS

• Click here for the Orthodontic COVID-19 Informed Consent. This form will only need to be completed once.

• Click here for the Orthodontic COVID-19 Health History Form. This form will need to be completed prior to EVERY appointment.

• Click here for the TMD COVID-19 Health History Form. This form will need to be completed prior to EVERY appointment.

These forms can also be found on our website under the Office Visits tab.

These forms can either be printed and turned into the front desk or can be printed, scanned and emailed to info(at)ossfw(dot)com.


Thank you for being our patient. We value your trust and loyalty and look forward to continuing your treatment.

 

Celebrating Laura!

April 22nd, 2020

Laura is celebrating 21 years with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Laura was raised in Angola, Indiana, and her parents and siblings still live in that area. She moved to Fort Wayne when she graduated from IPFW in 1997 with a certificate in Dental Assisting. Laura worked for a general dentist for 2 years before joining our team in 1999. Laura started her career with OSS as a Clinic Tech, but she transitioned into the role as our Scheduling Coordinator in June 2012 when she relocated to a Chicago suburb.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Laura works remotely from home and helps create the template that we use to schedule our patients. She also handles our team schedules. This means she is the one who gets text messages at 4 AM (the curse of Illinois time vs. Indiana time) when we are sick and has to rearrange schedules to be sure we are fully staffed to properly care for our patients. Can you imagine trying to coordinate schedules for 29 women???

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Laura is a wife to Tim (they will be celebrating 20 YEARS of marriage in May!) and they have two children. Her oldest is finishing her freshman year of college at the University of Alabama and her son is finishing his freshman year of high school. She's also a dog mom to a Malshi, Maggie.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Laura is such a fun team member! We don't get to see her in person as often as we'd like, but when we do she's constantly making us laugh! She's such an important part of our team and we appreciate her! Congrats, Laura, on 21 YEARS with OSS!

Celebrating Becky!

April 2nd, 2020

Becky is celebrating 30 YEARS with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

30 years! How awesome! Becky primarily works behind the scenes as a lab tech making your retainers, expanders, aligners, etc, etc, etc! She also has one of the most important jobs in the office; she is our OSHA guru. She watches webinars and reads documents that would put most people to sleep in order to make sure we are all following OSHA guidelines. Becky works primarily at our Dupont Road location, but you may see her from time to time at our Warsaw office working in the sterilization area.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Becky loves going out to dinner, playing cards or just hanging around a bonfire with her family and friends. She greatly enjoys spending time with her grandkids by attending their sporting events, watching movies or just talking about life with them. Her greatest joy is spending time with her husband, Rick. They enjoy boating, fishing and traveling all around the US. Her ultimate travel dream is to visit her brother and sister-n-law's home in The Netherlands.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Becky has a smile and a laugh that warms your heart. She's caring, generous and would do anything for her friends and teammates. She truly is a blessing to our team and we are so grateful for all that she does! Biggest congrats. Becky, on celebrating 30 YEARS with OSS!

COVID-19 Updates

April 1st, 2020

You can be assured that Dr. Aron and several of our team members are spending a large portion of their days staying up-to-date on the ever-changing COVID-19 news. Dr. Aron is communicating with members of the Indiana Dental Board on a regular basis, in addition to receiving daily updates from The American Dental Association and The American Association of Orthodontists. Webinars have become almost a daily occurrence so that we don’t miss any details about providing the best care for our patients and team members.

We have always placed a huge emphasis on meeting, if not exceeding, OSHA guidelines within the office. As a result of the current environment, we have already implemented changes to provide additional protection to our patients and team members. Some of these changes may need to continue indefinitely to ensure health and safety for everyone.

Orthodontic Specialty Services | Dr Aron Dellinger COVID-19 UPDATES

In addition, we are closely monitoring all of our active patient charts. Our office may be contacting you and ask you to send us photos to check rubber band progress, etc. Here are some quick and easy tips to take photos at home.

Orthodontic Specialty Services | Dr Aron Dellinger COVID-19 UPDATES

Thank you for your cooperation in recent weeks as we’ve implemented social distancing protocols. You have been amazing!

Celebrating Michelle!

March 25th, 2020

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Michelle is celebrating 24 YEARS with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

If you've been part of the OSS family for any length of time then we are sure you recognize this beautiful (OSS) smile and this perfect hair (HA!). Michelle started her career with OSS as a Clinic Tech in 1996 after working for a pediatric dentist for a short time. In 2007, she added the role as our Purchasing Manager for both of our offices. This means she is responsible for making sure our offices have all of the supplies in inventory that are needed for day-to-day operations. Michelle is a master of shopping and finding deals, so this responsibility is perfect for her!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Michelle is a wife and mom to two high school aged children, Dylan (age 18) and Leah (age 15). Her oldest, Dylan, will be leaving the nest this fall to attend Indiana University - Bloomington. Both of her kids keep her busy with all of their sporting activities; she frequently travels to tournaments all across the state.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Michelle enjoys vacationing to anywhere that is warm and has a beach! She also enjoys reading, baking, shopping (did we already tell you that?) and going to bed as early as possible. Michelle's attention to detail and caring disposition makes her an amazing asset to our team. Thank you, Michelle, for your dedication to OSS! We love and appreciate you!

Celebrating Robin!

January 29th, 2020

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Robin is celebrating 17 YEARS with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

You may have never had the pleasure of meeting Robin, because she is another team member who works diligently behind the scenes. Robin's office is hidden in the basement of our Dupont Road location and she currently works in the office one day a week.  Robin is our accounts payable and payroll manager [which also makes her the most popular person in the office. HA!]

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Robin's other role [both inside and outside the office] is being Dr. Aron's biggest supporter. They have been happily married for nearly 27 years and can often be found working side-by-side to entertain their family and friends. Dr. Aron and Robin have two children in college; both of whom attend their alma mater- Indiana University Bloomington.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Robin enjoys spending time at their home on the lake, traveling all over the world, and spending time with friends and family. She plays Mahjong on a regular basis [did you know that Mahjong is more than an app on your phone?] and enjoys having a jigsaw puzzle “on the table” year-round. Robin is an avid tennis player and she was recently appointed as a Court Appointed Special Advocate [CASA] for abused and neglected children.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

As you can tell, Robin has a huge heart! She is kind, generous and so much fun! She is a blessing to our team! Thank you, Robin, for your dedication to OSS! We appreciate you!

Celebrating Dee!

January 15th, 2020

Today we are celebrating Dee's 15th anniversary with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Dee is one of five team members that took a short sabbatical and then returned to our team. She originally started with OSS in February 1999 and worked as a clinic tech until April 2000 when she moved back to the Toledo area to be closer to family. We were so happy to have her rejoin our team when she relocated to the Warsaw area in 2005. Dee worked as a clinic tech for a number of years and now works exclusively as a Treatment Coordinator at both of our offices. She also fills the role as our Treatment Coordinator Team Leader.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Dee is a wife, a mom to two boys (Conner - age 17 & Reid - age 13) and a dog mom to her French Bulldog, Oliver. She thinks he's just about the cutest thing on earth and even has a doggie cam so she can watch his activity during the day! Her son, Reid, plays for a hockey team in Chicago and they travel all over North America for his hockey tourneys. It's a good thing she enjoys traveling!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

If you've met Dee then you know that she has a fun, outgoing personality (did you know that she was in the Miss Teen USA beauty pageant when she was a high school senior?!).

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

She's also kind, loving, tenderhearted and would do anything for her friends and family and is over a 7 year cancer survivor! We are so blessed to have Dee as a member of our team! Please help us in congratulating her on 15 YEARS with OSS!

Celebrating Tina!

December 18th, 2019

Tina is celebrating 19 YEARS with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

If you're an orthodontic patient at our office then you probably have not had the pleasure of meeting Tina. Tina works exclusively at our Dupont Road location and she is our main TMD Clinic Technician. She works closely with Dr. Ketcham to help our TMD patients who suffer from jaw joint disorders.

Tina runs many diagnostic tests for Dr. Ketcham to review, and she adjusts appliances that help alleviate jaw pain. Tina also helps packs supplies for our school presentations. (Our rough estimate is that Tina has packed almost 30,000 bags in the past 10 years.)

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team      Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger

Tina is a wife, has two adult daughters, and is a soon-to-be first time grandma! We can't forget to mention Tina's baby....her dog, Dottie! Dottie is a huge part of Tina's life and she loves her just like she's her child. Tina enjoys traveling and goes to Las Vegas numerous times a year with her husband for his work travels. She also enjoys reading and we can almost guarantee you would find her enjoying a good book during her lunch break!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

We are so blessed to have Tina as part of our team! She is patient, kind and one of those people who really gets what it means to be part of a team. There is no task too big or too small; she's always willing to help any way she can! Congrats on 19 YEARS with OSS, Tina! We appreciate you!

Celebrating Bev!

December 3rd, 2019

Today we are celebrating Bev's 22nd anniversary with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Bev has worked in orthodontics since 1978 and has worked in offices in Ohio and Virginia as well as Indiana. She started her career with OSS in 1997 as a Clinic Tech. Over the years she has transitioned to working at the front desk, but we still utilize her clinical skills for emergency appointments if they arise. Bev is also a member of our Marketing Team and anytime we need something drawn or hand lettered she is our go-to!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Bev is a mom to two grown children and has two of the cutest grandsons you'll ever see! Bev loves to travel with her husband in their RV. They started traveling the country in 2016 and have visited Illinois, Ohio, Michigan, Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, North Dakota, South Dakota, Montana, New Mexico, Texas, Arkansas, Missouri, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Nebraska, and Oklahoma. (That’s almost half of the contiguous states in just 3 years) One of the favorite places she's visited was the Hot Air Balloon Festival in Albuquerque, New Mexico earlier this year.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

If you've ever been to our Warsaw office then you know Bev's smile! When you walk through the door she greets you by name; she takes a genuine interest in getting to know our patients and their families. Thank you, Bev, for your dedication and congrats on 22 YEARS with OSS!

Celebrating Kristy!

December 3rd, 2019

Kristy is celebrating 18 YEARS with OSS [she doesn’t look old enough to have been here 18 years does she?]!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Did you know our office has an in-house lab? It's located in the basement of our Dupont Road office and Kristy is one of our talented lab techs! She designs the most amazing, unique retainers and customizes appliances for our patients.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Retainers

Kristy is part of our Marketing Team, she decorates all of the cake boxes that we give out when you get your braces off and she also bakes A LOT of cookies each week for our patients! <<< You really love her now, don't you?! HA!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Kristy is a wife, a busy mom to two children and a dog mom to one. She enjoys playing sports and actually played for an extramural volleyball team until her son was a year old. I asked Kristy if there is anything special that she likes to do for fun. Her answer was, "Weellll...we have small kids. So, our lives pretty much just revolve around that." HA! If you're a parent then you can completely relate to that response!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

As you can tell, Kristy has a great sense of humor and is one of the kindest people you will ever meet. She always greets you with a smile and we absolutely LOVE having her as part of our team. Congrats on 18 YEARS with OSS, Kristy! We appreciate you!

TMJ Awareness Month

November 20th, 2019

Did you know that November is National TMJ Awareness Month?

You may have heard of TMJ and/or TMD...

TMJ is an abbreviation for temporomandibular joint.The temporomandibular joint is a sliding hinge connecting your jawbone to your skull.

TMD is short for temporomandibular disorder. This disorder can include any symptoms of pain that affect the muscle surrounding the jaw or pain in the jaw joint.

TMD or TMJ Symptoms | Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger

Dr. Ketcham is the only prosthodontic specialist in Northeast Indiana who limits his practice to non-surgical treatment of TMJ disorders. Below is an example of a typical phone call we receive and it may help answer any questions you might have.


Caller: Hello, my dentist referred me to see Dr. Ketcham because they think I have TMJ.
OSS Team Member: I would be happy to schedule your exam with Dr. Ketcham. Let me explain a little of what the exam includes, then I can collect your information.
The exam with Dr. Ketcham will determine if your symptoms are related to TMD and the best treatment option available. Dr. Ketcham will review your medical history and evaluate your current symptoms. He will do a very thorough and detailed physical exam to determine if the symptoms are due to TMD and explain the best treatment for you. X-rays are not required, but if you have had any X-ray imaging within the last year then we will request copies for his review.
Caller: I don't think it is bad enough for surgery.
OSS Team Member: That is why you were referred to Dr. Ketcham. He specializes in prosthodontics and limits his practice to non-surgical TMD treatment. Most TMJ cases are non-surgical, but there are some that do require surgery. Dr. Ketcham will determine if you are a candidate for non-surgical treatment and will discuss that treatment with you at the consultation.
Caller: What all is involved in non-surgical TMD treatment?
OSS Team Member: Non-surgical TMD treatment is a combination of diagnostics, a custom orthotic appliance that we call a splint, and follow-up office visits to monitor treatment progress.
Caller: Does it work?
OSS Team Member: Yes. Many patients have experienced  noticeable improvements with this treatment and we have post-treatment reviews that we can share with you when you’re in the office.  You can be assured that Dr. Ketcham will only recommend treatment if you have met specific requirements during the exam. If he determines there may be a guarded prognosis or possibility of surgery he will discuss the reason why and recommend a different approach to treating your symptoms.
Caller: Is treatment covered by insurance?
OSS Team Member: In some cases, it is covered by insurance. We file with all insurance providers except Medicare and Medicaid and I can take your insurance information to see if you have a benefit available for TMJ services. This requires authorization or pre-certification prior to your exam and we can quote the benefit available to you through your insurance company at your exam.
Caller: Does dental insurance cover TMJ treatment? Because I don't have dental insurance.
OSS Team Member: Every policy is different, but typically when covered it is under medical insurance.  What symptoms are you having?
Caller: I’ve got clicking and it hurts to open my jaw, I have ear pain on the right side. Does this sound like TMD?
OSS Team Member: There are many symptoms that are related to TMD, those are a few of the more common. However, Dr. Ketcham will need to complete the exam to determine if you have temporomandibular joint or muscle disorder. If you would like, let me collect the rest of your information and we can schedule an exam.

Stay tuned for a future blog post that will go into more detail on TMD symptoms and the types of treatments we offer.

Celebrating Joelle!

November 20th, 2019

Joelle has been with OSS for 2 YEARS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

If you've worked in the dental field or have paid close attention at your dental office then you may have noticed that running the sterilization area is usually a team effort. We are so blessed at OSS to have team members designated to sterilization, and Joelle is one of those team members. Dr. Gene would always say that the person running sterilization is the most important person in the office, because without them we would have to close the office!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Joelle heads up the sterilization area at our Warsaw office on Mondays. This requires keeping all of the instruments sterilized to OSHA standards, pouring models, waxing bands for soldered appliances, maintaining our sterilization equipment, putting away all of the sterilized instruments and so much more! Joelle has worked in the dental field since 1996. Tuesday through Friday you can find her working as an Expanded Duties Dental Assistant with Dr. Jasmine Schlitt, DDS.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Joelle is a wife and a mom to two high school aged boys. They keep her very busy with their sporting activities! In her limited spare time, she enjoys reading and watching TV. Joelle is one of those people who you feel like you've known forever. She's a compassionate team member with a bright smile, and we are SO thankful to have her as part of our team! Biggest CONGRATS on celebrating 2 YEARS with OSS, Joelle!

Celebrating Talisha!

November 12th, 2019

Talisha is celebrating 28 YEARS with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Talisha started her career with OSS in 1991 as a clinic tech with Dr. Gene. She was trained by Whendy; who also recently celebrated an OSS anniversary! Talisha went to college for Secretarial Administration, and before starting in the dental field she worked for a book binding company in North Manchester as a Data Entry Clerk. She then transitioned to the world of dentistry in 1988 and worked for a general dentist. She loved orthodontics and she knew she wanted to work for an orthodontic specialist when she moved to the Fort Wayne area...that's when she joined our team. [Interesting fact about Talisha: after being on the team for so many years, she finally decided to have orthodontic treatment for herself.  She recently got her braces off, so be sure to ask to see her beautiful smile the next time you’re in the office.]

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Talisha still works in the clinic, but her primary job is at the front desk and she also serves as our Front Desk Team Leader. She works a majority of the time at our Dupont Road office, but you will see her smiling face on occasion at our Warsaw office. Another important job title Talisha holds is our Purchasing Assistant. She unpacks the crazy amount of boxes that arrive each day and then packs supplies from our "wish lists" to keep the offices stocked and running smoothly for day-to-day operations.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Talisha is a wife, a mom to two grown children and a dog mom to her Shih Tzu, Zoey. She enjoys exercising [You'd be impressed with how fast her short legs move! HA! Her walking pace is basically a fast jog!]. She also enjoys vacationing anywhere warm. She's one of our team members who has a heater on underneath the counter ALL. YEAR. LONG.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Talisha is kind and compassionate and instead of saying “you’re welcome”, she says “my pleasure”. You can be assured that she is speaking from her heart and it truly is her pleasure to assist our patients, parents and her teammates in any way she can. This is transparent in all aspects in her life, and we are so blessed to have her as part of our team! Congrats on celebrating 28 YEARS with OSS, T!

Veterans Day 2019

November 11th, 2019

Veterans Day holds a very special place in the heart of my family as my father and uncle both served and sacrificed for our country in WWII.

My father served in the European African Middle Eastern Theatre in early 1945. He was hit by shrapnel as he led a group into a battle and spent 5 months in a military hospital in England before being honorably discharged. He was awarded a bronze star and purple heart for his sacrifice.

 

This picture taken at my father’s funeral service is so precious to me. Daddy rarely talked about his time in the war and certainly would not have wanted this recognition, but he and the other men who have served deserve the honor that is bestowed gravesite.

Did you know that similar remembrance services take place at U.S. Service Cemeteries around the world? My Uncle Ansel (my mother’s brother) was killed in WWII and is buried at Epinal, France.

 

In the last few years, my sister has met a couple who oversee that soldier cemetery at Epinal and they keep us informed of those events. It is so heartwarming to know that all of the soldiers buried there are still remembered and recognized for the sacrifice they made.

Following is an excerpt from the report we received this past May:

“Extreme weather this 08/05/2019 but the ceremony that we(US MEMORY) organized at the American cemetery for the 75th anniversary of the two landings of 1944 (Normandy and Provence) was magnificent and took place in the presence of a large audience and civil and military personalities(Colonel Air Base Commander, several colonels from the 45th American Division who came as a delegation from Oklahoma, American Admiral from Washington, the French Mayors of Communes, etc…). All the pictures of boys in our possession were shown at the graves, A V of victory was presented on the central lawn made of artificial poppies planted by us and made by residents of retirement homes, nursing homes, schools, individuals, Felt and wire rod. The flags of all the American states were deployed by members of the US MEMORY, hymns and other musical pieces were played by a fanfare of a nearby regiment of tirailleurs, as well as by a group of Celtic-Pipers, school children sang in English, poems of soldiers were read and I had myself, after making the V layout, realized an exhibition in the chapel of the Mausoleum, on the Native American tribes represented among the graves of the cemetery.”

Throughout the year, Uncle Ansel’s cross is decorated; you can even see the picture that was posted so that visitors can put a face with the name.

  

It’s on my bucket list to visit Epinal and Uncle Ansel’s grave in person some day. I can’t imagine the emotions you would feel standing amidst all of these 5,200 men and women who sacrificed for our freedom.


 

Celebrating Whendy!

October 30th, 2019

Today we are celebrating Whendy's 28th anniversary with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Whendy graduated from the IPFW Dental Assisting program and immediately started her career with OSS in 1984...[Yes, you read that correctly! She started with OSS 35 YEARS ago]...working as a Clinic Tech with Dr. Gene. She worked with OSS until 1990 and then took a short sabbatical and rejoined our team in 1991.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

She continued to work as a clinic tech for a few more years, but at that time all clinical examination gloves were made of latex and she developed a latex allergy. Whendy was such a vital team member that she was transferred to the lab. [At that time lab techs did not wear gloves, masks or safety glasses. <<< In her own words, "I know, how gross!"]  Whendy is now our Lab Team Leader, and is crazy talented! We're certain she could weld expanders and bend wires with her eyes closed! She is very instrumental in helping Dr. Aron design and make custom appliances for many of our difficult cases.

Now let's share some fun facts about Whendy:

• Whendy spent many years as part of the pit crew when Dr. Aron raced go-karts in the 3 Rivers Festival.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

• Whendy started as a patient with Dr. Gene when she was only 5 years old with a partial cleft palate, and she didn’t complete her ortho transformation until she was 18 years old.
• She's one of four team members who have taken a sabbatical and then returned to working at our office.
•She shares her OSS anniversary AND her birthday with other teammates.
•She attended the Dental Assisting Program with our teammate, Sandi. [You'll get to see Sandi's graduation pic in May!]

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

•She's a dog mom to 3 LARGE dogs and a wife of 30 years to her husband, Dan!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

•Until recently, Whendy was an avid motorcyclist. Some days, she even rode her bike to work.

We love Whendy's sense of humor and her laugh! She's such an amazing teammate and we are so thankful and blessed to have her as part of our team!

Celebrating Rhonda!

October 3rd, 2019

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Rhonda is celebrating 13 YEARS with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Rhonda is our office manager and handles many behind the scenes duties (she is truly behind the scenes as her office is in the basement). Rhonda is a CPA and also has a degree in Computer Technology. She’s responsible for all of our HR, finance, computer/IT, and property management functions. She works directly with Dr. Aron on setting goals for our team and with our team leaders to implement goal strategies.  Rhonda is constantly juggling many tasks at one time and handles it with grace.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Rhonda is a wife, a mom to two grown children (who both have inconveniently relocated to Texas!), and a dog mom to two beagles. She also has the most adorable grandson you will ever see!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Rhonda is amazingly creative. She makes the most beautiful quilts and sends them all over the country to friends and family. She is always working on independent personal growth and regularly provides motivational input to the team by sharing ideas from a variety of sources. She lives out her faith at work and at home. Rhonda really walks the walk!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Rhonda has the unique ability to be not only a leader, but a friend to all of our team members. We are so blessed to have her on our team. Join us in congratulating Rhonda on celebrating 13 YEARS with OSS!

Celebrating Dawn!

October 2nd, 2019

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Dawn (one of our newer team members, LOL) is celebrating 12 YEARS with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Dawn has worked in the dental field for many years. She started her career at the age of 17 working in general dentistry. She transferred to the world of orthodontics in 2007 when she started at our office as a clinic tech, putting on braces, taking x-rays, fitting for appliances, taking impressions and so much more. If you ever hear singing or see dancing in the clinic, we can almost guarantee it's Dawn! She is also one of our Orthodontic Treatment Coordinators, working closely with Dr. Aron to help deliver his treatment plans to our patients. We know it already sounds like she does so much, but she is ALSO on our marketing team and is one of our team members who goes into schools to make hygiene presentations. Can you believe she only works part-time? We should say that she works part-time IN the office, because if you see her outside of the office, she will almost always have on OSS apparel and will quickly share with you the reasons why you need to come see Dr. Aron.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Dawn lives in Fort Wayne and is a wife and a mom to 3 kids. Her kids keep her busy with all of their activities: baseball, softball, volleyball, dance, football. Dawn is a HUGE football fan and is always rooting for her favorite team - the Colts. She's such a die-hard fan that she even has season tickets. Dawn is fun and bubbly (sometimes annoyingly so, HA!), and we love having her as part of our team! Join us in congratulating Dawn on celebrating 12 YEARS with OSS!

Celebrating Lindsey!

September 25th, 2019

Today's anniversary shout-out goes to Lindsey! She is celebrating 13 YEARS with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Lindsey joined our team after graduating from the Dental Assisting Program at IPFW in 2006. She is yet another team member who is cross-trained in multiple areas of the office. Lindsey started her career with OSS working full-time in the clinic, and while she still works in the clinic occasionally, she has transitioned to working mainly at the front desk. Lindsey has the important responsibility of tracking patient data and helping Dr. Aron prepare submissions for his ABO Certification and Angle Society cases.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Lindsey is a true and die-hard Buckeye. She was born and raised in Ohio, and she continues to live there with her husband and three young kids. Can you imagine what time she has to leave home in the morning to be at the Pine Valley office by 6:25 am to travel to Warsaw? [Fun Fact: she’s one of 3 team members who live in Ohio and leave home before 6:00 am for Warsaw patient days]. In her (very limited) downtime she enjoys reading Christian and historical fiction. Lindsey was raised on a farm and the hard work ethic that is involved with that lifestyle shows through with her work at OSS. Not only is Lindsey hard working but she is also one of the sweetest people you will ever meet (I wouldn’t be surprised if she apologizes before killing a fly). If you've interacted with her at anytime then we are sure you agree! We are so blessed to have Lindsey as a part of our team and we hope you will join us in congratulating her on celebrating 13 YEARS with OSS!

Celebrating Lisa!

September 18th, 2019

Today's anniversary shout-out goes to Lisa...She is celebrating 24 YEARS with OSS! This blog post is full of fun facts so keep reading to learn more about Lisa and her career with OSS.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

We are sure that you recognize Lisa's smiling face if you've been hanging around OSS for any length of time. [Fun fact #1] Lisa actually started her career with OSS 30 years ago. A friend, that was an OSS patient, told her that she needed to work here, so she applied in 1989. She worked at the front desk for 3 years before moving to Southern Indiana. She rejoined our team in 1995 when she moved back to the Fort Wayne area. [Fun fact #2] Lisa took a second sabbatical in 2010 for 4 months when her family moved to Mackinac Island.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

{^^^Another fave photo! Circa 1995}

Lisa is currently one of our front desk team members and greets you when you call the office and walk through the front door. Her self-proclaimed favorite part of her job is getting to chat with patients and their families. She's actually the first to admit that she would much rather be the "social chairman" --- sipping coffee, chatting in the reception area, and [Fun Fact #3] trying to keep the Galaga high score on our arcade games in Warsaw. <<< She takes the game very seriously! HA!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

For a number of years, Lisa only worked 1 day a week and that was at the Warsaw office. When she would fill-in on occasion in the Fort Wayne office, the patients and parents thought she was a new employee. Within the last few years, she’s added 2 more days a week to her regular routine and the Fort Wayne families are getting to know her as well.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Lisa is a wife and a mom to two kids. [Fun Fact #4] Her daughter was 18 months old and her son was 6 years old when Lisa and her husband, Scott, adopted them from Russia. She's a recent empty nester and has moved from the Fort Wayne area to a lake north of Kendallville. Lisa has one of the biggest, loving and compassionate hearts. Her smile is genuine and her kindness shows through with everything she does. She's a blessing to our team and everyone she meets! Join us in congratulating Lisa on celebrating 24 years with OSS!

Celebrating Katie!

August 29th, 2019

We have a third August anniversary to celebrate today! Katie is celebrating 18 YEARS with OSS!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Many of our team members wear multiple hats and are cross-trained throughout the office, but Katie takes it to the extreme. She is our main TMD Treatment Coordinator and works closely with Dr. Ketcham by delivering his treatment plans to patients who suffer from jaw pain and discomfort. Katie also works with our patients' insurance companies to determine the TMD benefits that can be applied to their treatment. Katie can also be found at the front desk; greeting you when you call the office and when you walk through the door. In addition, she is one of our team members who go into local schools to make presentations on proper oral hygiene. We're guessing that she has touched the lives of over 15,000 students in the past 10 years!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team

Katie was born and raised in Fort Wayne. She's a wife and a busy mom to three kids. [Fun Fact: She's one of two team members that has twins!] She was an avid soccer player, soccer referee and now a soccer coach - it's definitely in her blood. She enjoys spending time with her family and vacationing anywhere that is sunny and warm! Katie is a compassionate team member who loves and supports her teammates; these are qualities that transfer to her patient care. She has a welcoming smile that we are sure you won't forget! Congrats, Katie, on celebrating 18 YEARS with OSS!

Celebrating Alaina!

August 22nd, 2019

Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team - Alaina's 3rd OSS Anniversary

We have our second August anniversary to celebrate today. A few weeks ago we celebrated our team member with the longest tenure and today we're celebrating one of our newer team members. Time must really fly when you're having fun, because it's hard to believe that Alaina is celebrating 3 YEARS with OSS!

Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team - Alaina's 3rd OSS Anniversary

Alaina was an OSS patient when she was in high school (we could show you some cute pictures); she started working with us after finishing the Dental Assisting Program at IPFW in 2016. Starting at a young age, she worked at her Grandpa’s restaurant and in a nursing home. From day 1 at OSS, it was obvious that she was no stranger to hard work and providing compassionate customer service. She currently works at both of our locations as a Clinic Tech.

Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team - Alaina's 3rd OSS Anniversary Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team - Alaina's 3rd OSS Anniversary

Alaina recently married her high school sweetheart and they just purchased their first home together. She enjoys spending time with her family and being outdoors; whether it's at the beach or snow skiing. Alaina is always happy and smiling (showing off that OSS smile). We are blessed to have her on our team and look forward to many years to come!

Celebrating Tami!

August 3rd, 2019

Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team - Tami's 38th OSS Anniversary

Our team is a family. We have an average tenure of more than 16 years, so we have known each other for a long time! We love to celebrate each other's accomplishments and today we are going to celebrate Tami's 38th anniversary with OSS! Yes, you read that correctly...Tami is celebrating 38 YEARS with OSS! She started her career with OSS in 1981 working as a Clinic Tech with Dr. Gene, Dr. Aron's father.

Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team - Tami's 38th OSS Anniversary

(^^This photo is one of our faves! It was taken in the office circa 1983.)

Tami wears many hats in our office, and you will see her at both of our locations. Currently, she's a member of our front desk team, our financial team, and her main title is our Treatment Coordinator Assistant. She has the very important job of entering Dr. Aron's treatment plan into each patient chart after the exam is complete. This treatment plan is a guideline that we follow at every appointment to keep track of where we are in our patient's treatment. She also performs 3D intra-oral scans to document the starting point of our patients.

Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team - Tami's 38th OSS Anniversary Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team - Tami's 38th OSS Anniversary

Tami is a wife, a mom to two grown children and a grandma to five. She always has a smile on her face and she enjoys spending time in Florida. She's a friend to everyone in the office and someone that we lean on and look to as an example of hard work and dedication. How often can you say that you have a team member that has worked with multiple generations of families that come into your office? What an amazing blessing to have a team member who sets such a high example.

Dr. Aron Dellinger - Meet the Team - Tami's 38th OSS Anniversary

Thank you, Tami, for all you do! We appreciate you!

Let us introduce you to...

July 10th, 2019

We have a few new faces in the office and a couple of faces that may look familiar to you. We wanted to take a moment to highlight each of these new/returning team members!

Let's start with Dominik:

Dominik started working at OSS in 2015 as an intern during his senior year of high school. He has since returned each summer to work in the office.

Dominik is a senior in undergraduate school at Indiana University Bloomington. He is majoring in biology and minoring in history. You will see him doing a variety of jobs around the office including, but not limited to, clinic work with patients, cleaning units, and moving heavy boxes around. He also helps his dad, Dr. Aron, put together slideshows for dental presentations. He enjoys spending his free time on the lake; wake surfing and fishing.

Fun fact about Dominik: He eats Mexican food every Monday for lunch with Dr. Aron AND every Wednesday after work with friends.


Let us introduce you to Annie:

Annie - Meet the Team - Orthodontic Specialty Services

Annie recently graduated from Purdue Fort Wayne as a Dental Assistant. She rotated through our office during her school program and is currently completing our clinic tech training. In her spare time she loves to do anything that has to do with being outdoors.

Fun fact about Annie: She LOVES the Chicago Cubs. GO CUBBIES!!


Now let's meet Hope:

Hope - Meet the Team - Orthodontic Specialty Services

Hope is currently working on her Associate Degree in Dental Assisting at the Lafayette campus of Ivy Tech. She is interning in the clinic at our Warsaw office this summer and you will see her cleaning units, stocking supplies and helping the clinic techs with whatever they may need. Some of her hobbies include playing volleyball, water sports, biking, reading and baking.

Fun fact about Hope: When Hope was 5, she broke her foot after jumping off a microwave.


Next up is Ronda:

Ronda - Meet the Team - Orthodontic Specialty Services

Ronda has worked in the dental field since 1991 and she previously worked in our offices as a Clinic Tech from 2000- 2012. She has four kids; Wade age 16, Cole age 12, Elle and Bret age 10. Her hobbies include chasing her kids around (HA!) and taking them to whatever sport is in season.

Fun fact about Ronda: She was a Girl Scout leader for 2 years and all of her kids have been involved in Girl and/or Boy Scouts.


Last, but definitely not least, Katie:

Katie - Meet the Team - Orthodontic Specialty Services

Katie is studying nursing at Purdue Fort Wayne. She is currently interning at our Fort Wayne location in the clinic area; helping keep the area stocked, cleaning units, and grabbing supplies for our Clinic Techs. OSS has been a part of Katie's life for a long time. Katie is a former patient and her mom, Lisa, has worked at OSS for almost 25 years!

Fun fact about Katie: She was born in Russia.


We are so happy to have these smiling faces as part of our team!

Dr. Gene - Our Founder

November 20th, 2018

Dr. Gene is a great father, full of truth and wisdom that he wants to share with any who would care to listen. His love of food made meal time a special part of our lives. We would sit for long dinners enjoying all kinds of amazing foods, but more interesting for me was the table talk. The subject could meander from hard work and scholastic discipline, to how to avoid getting into trouble by choosing your friends and activities carefully.  He would share time and time again that if you love what you do for a living then you never have to work a day in your life. He loves orthodontics.

Orthodontic Specialty Services | Dr. Aron Dellinger

Dr. Gene's father was a carpenter, factory foreman and a jack of all trades. His mother a retail sales clerk. He came from humble means and was the first in his family to attend university. Gene always had a drive to achieve academically and had a great work ethic, which he learned from his parents. His parents moved from Decatur to Fort Wayne so that he would have access to education and the possibility of attending Indiana University.

Orthodontic Specialty Services | Dr. Aron Dellinger

He graduated from Fort Wayne’s North Side High School and spent his first two years at “the extension” in Fort Wayne. He then transferred to IU Bloomington his junior year. (At that time Bloomington was the only place one could complete an undergrad degree.) He spent his summers working on a civil engineering crew, learned quite a bit about engineering, and enjoyed the practical application of his mathematical education.

Orthodontic Specialty Services | Dr. Aron Dellinger

While in Bloomington, he lived in a house off campus that cost him $1 per day. Included was his breakfast and laundry service in exchange for lawn mowing and snow shoveling.   He also worked as a waiter at the Delta Gamma House where he could have his lunch and dinner as part of the work arrangement. He also got special meals in the winter time from the cooks at Delta Gamma in exchange for warming up their cars and scraping off the snow/ice from their windows.

Orthodontic Specialty Services | Dr. Aron Dellinger

During his time at IU Bloomington, Gene began courting Rosalie Hasewinkle, the daughter of a Fort Wayne physician. She and Gene were friends in high school and grew closer as they fell in love at IU. One Semester Rosalie noticed that Gene would go on study dates with her but never brought any books with him. She asked how he managed to study without any books, and his response was that he had enough money for tuition and his room/board but there wasn’t anything left for books. She proceeded to purchase his books for him that semester and famously proclaimed for the rest of her life that it was one of the best investments she ever made!

Orthodontic Specialty Services | Dr. Aron Dellinger

Gene graduated from IU Bloomington, and went on to IU School of Dentistry for his DDS, and continued there ultimately earning his MSD in Orthodontics.

Orthodontic Specialty Services | Dr. Aron Dellinger

Dr. Gene’s work ethic and love of orthodontics helped him become incredibly successful, but it wasn’t easy for him. He moved back to Fort Wayne when he finished school to set up practice, and he learned quickly that there were several other orthodontists who had already established relationships with the referring dentists. It was tough getting started, but he built friendships with dentists, treated the tough cases well, and he made sure his patients had a great experience. He worked long hours, and became one of the first ABO certified orthodontists in the area. After about 5 years the practice finally broke even.  A few years later it was obvious that he had established one of the busiest orthodontic practices around! During his career he won the Milo Hellman Award for original research and continued to write several benchmark journal articles. He spent nearly 40 years in private practice, also lecturing, and teaching worldwide.

During this time, Gene and Rosalie traveled the world together, celebrating life with friends and family. They loved to host meals in their home, and often were referred to as the best restaurant in Fort Wayne. They had two sons Eric and Aron - both orthodontists. Sadly, Rosalie passed away March 30, 2007 after a long-fought battle with breast cancer.

Gene is now fully retired from private practice. His family and business legacy are a testimony of his commitment to excellence and hard work!  Gene still loves to host meals in his home, spending time with friends, sharing great stories, and fine wines. We are all so very thankful for Dr. Gene!

 

Team Meetings

September 19th, 2018

All-team meetings are a huge part of the culture at OSS. Every 6 months we take time to meet as a whole team. With two office locations and differing work schedules it is not uncommon for some team members to have no face to face interaction with several other team members. We value communication as our number one team principle, so it is important for everyone to communicate on a regular basis.

All-team meetings allow our collective talent and knowledge to come together. We share ideas and challenges which provides a broader perspective to problem solving and greater unity as changes are implemented. Sharing information across teams, as well as up and down the chain of command, is essential to making sure good ideas are implemented. This unrestricted communication is also important for identifying problems that need to be addressed.

Our culture functions much like a family. Caring/nurturing parents, responsible older siblings, and respect for one another set the stage for healthy family communication. Managers and team leaders are selected because they work well with their respective teams, and have the ability to identify and encourage the best in others around them. Teams are built based on the skill sets of the individual members. Special projects and specific duties are assigned to team members based on sub-skills and interests of individual team members.

Below is the agenda for one of our team meetings:


8:00                      All-team and small group photos at Parkview.

9:00                      Return to OSS for individual photos in the lobby.

10:00 – 11:00     Presentation.

11:00 – Noon     OSHA.

After OSHA teams will get details about: “Inspire a Genuine Smile Projects”.

Noon – 4:30      Groups discuss Genuine Smile Project ideas, lunch & offsite activity.

4:30                     Return to OSS.


Offsite activities are often intended to be a surprise and a reward for team members.  At the last all-team meeting we had a team lunch and then went for a trolley ride visiting some shops around town.

“Inspire a Genuine Smile” projects are designed to get our team members collaborating and serving others. This time we broke into several groups of 5 or 6 people, each group was given $50 cash and instructed to “Inspire a Genuine Smile”.

The groups all had unique ways of making that happen. One group bought three dozen cookies from a local bake shop and took them downtown with a sign that said “smile for a cookie”. They took pictures and made a short video of all sorts of people smiling for a cookie; homeless folks, police officers, business executives, and downtown shoppers all smiled for cookies!

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger

One of the teams went to an animal shelter and brought in items they needed for the cats and dogs. They stayed and played with some kittens, and shared a smile with the volunteers at the shelter.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger

Another team took a box of delicious treats to a firehouse and shared it with the firefighters. One group went to a Mexican restaurant and asked the manager which waitress could use some help. They got her table, enjoyed afternoon snacks, and then gave her an envelope with the $50 tip inside. She cried, then smiled and hugged them!

Another group went to the Dollar Tree, purchased a whole grocery cart full of household items, and then delivered them to a facility that helps displaced families get back on their feet. The volunteers at the facility were amazing! They took a beautiful smiling group photo and shared stories with the team.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger

The last group went to Erin's House, a facility for grieving children, and purchased items from their wishlist. They delivered craft items, coloring books, stickers, markers and picture frames.

Orthodontic Specialty Services - Dr. Aron Dellinger

All of the teams returned to the office and shared pictures and stories of the smiles that were inspired by each group that day!

I say this often and it remains so true...I am so blessed to work with this amazing group of people!

What About Aligners?

June 6th, 2018

Clear aligners, Invisalign… What exactly is it and how does it work?

I should preface this blog post with… aligners are not for everyone!! Many factors play into why braces or other devices may be substantially more effective for a specific patient.

Choosing the correct orthodontic appliance for a specific patient is critical to achieving the best results possible.

How do clear aligners move the teeth?

Dr. Aron Dellinger - Orthodontic Specialty Services | Clear Aligners

Clear aligners fit over the teeth, snapping over their convexities. A series of aligners is required to move teeth orthodontically. Each aligner has a slight change in its shape as compared to the previous one. This small change causes the aligner to flex a tiny amount as it goes over the teeth. That slight flex puts pressure on the teeth that will, over about two to three weeks of full time wear, move an individual tooth about .25mm.

Computer software and a 3D scan of the dental arches are used to specify where each individual tooth should move to create a “set-up” of the desired finished outcome. This set-up can be evaluated to determine which type of tooth movement is required to get the teeth from their starting positions to the projected outcome. Calculating the movement in millimeters and degrees provides the necessary data to determine the number of aligners required in the series to complete the case. More complex cases with lots of change in tooth position will require more aligners in the series, and thus treatment will take longer to complete.

Dr. Aron Dellinger - Orthodontic Specialty Services | Clear Aligners

Are there different types clear of aligners?

Yes…Invisalign (a clear aligner) is a product just like Kleenex (a facial tissue). There are several companies that produce aligners for tooth movement. Invisalign simply has such excellent brand recognition, very few people distinguish between the name brand and the actual device.

Invisalign is a clear aligner product marketed, by Align Technologies, a multi-billion dollar a year international company. Align Technologies was the first company to deliver a system of clear aligners that could be used for comprehensive tooth movement. I was very early on the scene with Invisalign and became certified in the technique 20 years ago.

In every market there are advantages and disadvantages to choosing a specific brand of product. Invisalign has some very attractive features. The process of using Invisalign is very much about the service. An intra oral 3D scan or impression of the teeth is sent to Invisalign along with a “treatment preferences” form. Invisalign uses the scan or impression to make a virtual model of the teeth, and then manipulates the model to accommodate the “treatment preferences” determined by the doctor. About 3 weeks after sending in the case, a file is sent to the doctor for approval to see if the doctor likes what is shown. By clicking okay the whole series of aligners from start to finish is made and shipped. They usually arrive after another 2 or 3 weeks. So it takes about 6 weeks to get the aligners to the patient, and that’s a bit longer to get started than most consumers would like.

However, there are a few drawbacks. Very little direct doctor involvement is required to achieve a set up using Invisalign. What if, out of a 20 aligner series, at aligner number 7 the computer model didn’t accurately simulate how the teeth would move? The answer…aligner number 7 doesn’t go in properly. So, what happens now? Aligners number 8 through number 20 will also not go in properly. The whole package of aligners from aligner number 7 forward is now a bag of trash...(At $160/pair, if you’re counting top and bottom together)...That's pretty expensive trash, $2240...Ouch!  As a practitioner, not only is the risk of wasted aligners a concern, but also what it adds to time in treatment.  Basically the “mid-course correction” process involves another scan and another 6 weeks waiting for new aligners to arrive.  Also, there is the “mid-course correction fee”...another ouch! I cannot speak for other professionals but I don’t charge my patients extra when appliances don’t fit. I eat the extra cost and lose money on those cases. So, if you’re wondering why Invisalign is so expensive everywhere…The risk of wasted aligners, and “mid-course correction” factors into case cost.

Dr. Aron Dellinger - Orthodontic Specialty Services | Clear Aligners

I actually stopped using Invisalign and started using another system called “Orchestrate” about four years ago. Orchestrate is a highly interactive clear aligner system. The system is similar to Invisalign regarding how the aligners are derived…except instead of having the company do the set up, I do the set up myself. Rather than treatment preferences that are generic to how I want to finish…I personally set up each specific case as I want the teeth to be moved at every stage of treatment. Also, instead of printing all of the aligners at once,  I print models of the teeth at the various stages and make the aligners in my own lab. I also only print three models in the series at any given time, so if there is an error in the predicted tooth movement very little waste of material, money and time has occurred.  Another advantage to Orchestrate is that I can see a patient for an exam, take a scan of the teeth, and give the first set of aligners to that patient in only three weeks, half the wait time of Invisalign!

What about DIY aligners?

I have a phrase for this one… “Don’t DIY healthcare!" There are so many things wrong with mail order aligners that it’s hard to find a starting point. First… no x-rays or CBCT imaging is used, meaning, you don’t know what is going on under the gums. Teeth can move where there is bone, and if you move them out of the bone they will be lost! Simply put you do not know if there is any bone around those teeth. Without x-rays there is no way to tell! Is there a disease process at work under the gum tissue that would compromise the health of the teeth if they are moved? Again, no way to tell without x-rays.

Moving your teeth, even a small amount, affects your bite, tooth wear, your facial muscles, and your jaw joint. Every day, I meet a new patient who has a very small concern, and we have a consult to discuss something like closing a small space between the upper front teeth. I take photographs, x-rays, look at the tooth charting and gum tissue probing depths sent from the dentists’ office, perform a range of motion analysis of the jaw joint, and then we discuss our findings. Interestingly, it almost never is as simple as just sliding the two front teeth together and done. The space got there somehow, and there is something making it stay. “Just a little cosmetic touch up” without big picture perspective almost always leads to excess tooth wear, damage to the enamel, sore muscles, and sore teeth.  Orthodontists have on average twelve years of college, and sometimes we get fooled by an easy looking case… DON’T TAKE CHANCES WITH YOUR HEALTHCARE!

The Road to ABO Certification

January 11th, 2018

The American Board of Orthodontics (ABO) was established in 1929 and is the oldest specialty board in dentistry. The ABO is the only certifying board in the specialty that is recognized by the American Dental Association (ADA). The board's purpose is to elevate the quality of orthodontic care for the public by promoting excellence through certification, education and professional collaboration. Not all orthodontists are board certified. All orthodontists must be licensed to practice, however board certification is a voluntary achievement that all orthodontists do not choose to pursue.

In December 1998, I completed my orthodontic residency at Saint Louis University (Masters in Specialized Dentistry-Orthodontics). I started work at OSS immediately after completing my comprehensive exams and defending my thesis. I took those exams in Saint Louis, packed up my stuff, drove back to Fort Wayne and started work with my father, brother, and uncle in private practice at OSS the very next workday. At that time very few orthodontists in the state of Indiana were ABO certified (in Northern Indiana maybe only four). The ABO certification process has proven to be incredibly valuable to me by changing the way I look at case results.

How to become ABO certified...

The ABO exam is a three-part exam. The first part is a written exam, similar to the SAT, but it only focuses on orthodontic related science. The second part is the board case records exam, which is a face to face oral examination involving clinical case records. Its purpose is to test the candidate's ability to diagnose and identify various orthodontic problems, and his or her knowledge of possible treatment options for correcting those problems. The third part of the exam is the clinical exam. This exam involves presenting cases treated by the candidate with extensive measurement and documentation of the pre and post-treatment results. Most orthodontists who complete the ABO process spend about 10 years in private practice accumulating case records and developing skills prior to taking the clinical exam (part three).

I began the ABO certification process as a resident by passing the written portion of the exam. After completing my Master’s Degree, I started to collect case records in preparation for the clinical portion of the ABO exam. I was tracking the progress of specific cases that would qualify for the various categories that the ABO required candidates to present. About a year and a half later some of those cases were coming to completion and I began the arduous task of measuring models, tracing and measuring x-rays and scoring the cases to see how well they finished. I felt confident that all of the cases I finished were excellent examples of skilled orthodontic treatment, and that they would score very well….I was wrong!

The cases displayed wonderful before and after results. They looked great and the teeth fit well in the bite. X-rays and photos indicated that all of the major aspects of health function and aesthetics were super. BUT when I started measuring, looking at smaller discrepancies, adding up all of the minor imperfections, and critically assessing more detailed aspects of the finished result, many of the cases I was most proud of did not “measure up” to the ABO standard of excellence. What I discovered was that only about twenty percent of the cases that I hoped would serve as ABO cases for a specific category were really the type of case that the ABO would find excellent.

During the process of measuring every detail of many, many cases I started to identify patterns of imperfection. I found areas in treatment results that consistently were NOT finishing as well as they could. Without spending countless hours literally “measuring imperfection” and critically reviewing my own case results, I never would have discovered there were imperfections that I could eventually PREDICT AND CORRECT BEFORE a case was even treated! I discovered that in certain patients the braces would produce rotations or tipping of the roots in x-rays. I learned to take progress records during treatment and also learned precisely where to look for discrepancies, identifying them earlier in treatment, improving both treatment time and results.

You may be asking what is required to maintain ABO certification?

Re-certification of ABO status is a relatively recent development and the requirements for re-certification are constantly changing. When I took the written exam it was explained to us that we would be the first class of orthodontists taking the ABO exam that would be subject to continual re-certification. In 1996 it was announced that all candidates taking the written exam would be required to re-certify every 10 years. Prior to this re-certification was not required for orthodontists who took the written exam.

I completed the board certification process in 2005, and I found the entire process of studying, gathering case records, measuring results, and receiving critical feedback from the examiners to be one of the most valuable learning experiences of my whole career.

How and Why You Should Choose an Orthodontist

October 30th, 2017

Recently I’ve had questions from acquaintances and friends asking how to choose a provider and/or a treatment method for their orthodontic needs.

MY STANDARD ANSWER IS TO LOOK FOR AN AAO ORTHODONIST

There are many myths about orthodontists and orthodontic treatment, and finding an AAO orthodontist is the easiest way to identify that the provider is in fact a specialist in orthodontics. Not all providers of orthodontic services are orthodontists.

Orthodontists have completed four years of dental school, AND an additional two to three years of full-time university training specifically in orthodontics. That full-time training involves intensive study of facial growth and development, bone physiology, functional relationships of the teeth and jaws, and a variety of treatment techniques...with and without the use of braces. An AAO orthodontist will know which techniques are best suited to your specific health and cosmetic needs.

Many states, including Indiana, do not require the additional years of training in orthodontics for providers to practice orthodontics. ONLY providers who have completed the two to three extra years of training are eligible to display the AAO logo. If the AAO logo is not displayed, specifically ask your provider: “Have you completed a full time university program in specialized orthodontics?”  (If so.. they will have a masters degree or certificate of residency completion from that university…usually proudly on display). This additional two to three years of university training defines what it means to be a specialist.

DON’T BE FOOLED- a certificate of intensive course completion from a corporation IS NOT a degree in orthodontics! (I get about three of these training certificates each year. All that is required to obtain those is to pay for a course, sit, and listen.)

There are many treatment techniques in the marketplace that I refer to as “packaged services”, clear aligners being the most common. Clear aligner companies often generate a predicted treatment outcome for the practitioner and then provide appliances which can approximate the predicted outcome. These “packaged services” are frequently offered as the only option by the non-specialist, because the treatment course can be set by the manufacturer of the appliance, requiring little knowledge of how orthodontic tooth movement works on the part of the health care provider. There are even companies that directly market appliances to consumers, leaving the dentist/orthodontist supervision out of the equation. Realize that the “appliance” (braces or aligners) is not the treatment!  Proper diagnosis of the underlying cause of your orthodontic problems is necessary to determine the most effective, healthy, and stable way to correct them. Only an orthodontist has the formal training to offer you a complete variety of treatment options which consider your health and your personal preferences. There are also “packaged service” options offering quick treatment using braces, typically six-month treatment promising to align and correct your crooked smile. Some orthodontic problems are completely correctable with aligners, and/or with six months of braces...great news! But BEWARE that providers that ONLY offer clear aligners and or six-month treatments are not likely specialists! These quick fix offerings are easy to sell, provide great profitability for the healthcare provider, and require very little training to implement (one weekend hotel course and you’re a “certified” provider).

True specialists also have specially trained staff to assist in your treatment. Ask your provider about the training of their staff in addition to your questions about specialty training of the doctor. All of the clinical technicians in my practice are Trapezio AOA (Academy of Orthodontic Assisting) Gold Certified.  This certification demonstrates clear knowledge of a variety of orthodontic techniques and orthodontic treatment principles. In a specialist’s office, staff are expertly trained and highly skilled in performing orthodontic appliance adjustments. These skilled assistants save you time in the chair at each visit, and provide more comfortable and efficient appointments. An orthodontic assistant in a specialist’s office will perform more orthodontic appliance adjustments in one year than a typical non-specialist dentist will in a whole career!

Happy Birthday, Dr. Aron!

September 8th, 2017

If you follow us on our Facebook Page then you know that we love to celebrate holidays, birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, babies, and the list goes on and on!

Dr. Aron recently celebrated his birthday and one day in the office last month we asked our patients to write down a birthday sentiment including their favorite thing or favorite memory of Dr. Aron. We had so many great responses and here are a few!

"Whenever I have an appointment he always comes in with a smile on his face and asks me how my day is going or about school. He's always so cheerful and lighthearted."
-Hannah Age: 14

"When I got my expanders and I didn't want them, he talked me through it and everything was ok."
-Maddy Age: 11

"He's a great guy and always takes my concerns seriously and is always caring!"
-Nicole Age: 27

"He is always so kind and friendly to everyone. He always says hi and asks about vacations. Dr. Aron never forgets a name. He is a great orthodontist and I'm glad I have him as one!"
-Morgan Age: 13

"Dr. Aron is always interested in my hobbies and other things going on in my life."
-Piper Age: 12

"My favorite memory/thing [about] Dr. Aron is how he is super encouraging and nice. Whenever I had questions he would answer them. Thank you for always telling me my smile was beautiful."
-Mary Age: 14

"My favorite thing about Dr. Aron is how personable he is. He never makes me feel like a patient, but always a friend. Happy Birthday!"
-Libby Age: 16

We would love to hear your favorite thing or favorite memory of Dr. Aron. Tell us in the comments below or on our Dr. Aron's Birthday Facebook Post!

Our Principles

July 20th, 2017

I love to brag on my team! Our team is unique and if you’ve been in our office it is something that you can tangibly feel. Our average tenure is nearly 16 years so the team at OSS is comprised of many long term experienced team members. We have a culture which values and embodies respect, synergy and efficiency.

A few years back we spent quite a bit of time defining our team culture, and putting into words what makes our team so effective. We worked with Bruce, a consultant and team coach, who ran us through a great team exercise. The exercise began by each team member individually choosing the 10 most important principles in our culture. After each team member had their own top 10, we then combined all of the lists to see which principles repeated with the most frequency. This list then became the team combined top 10 principles.

After choosing our principles the team was tasked with finding ways to make sure that our work life embodies those principles. Each team group: clinic, front desk, lab, financial, supply, and marketing came up with their own list of actions and behaviors that are expected to consistently uphold the team principles.

Here’s an example of how we apply our number one principle in the office...When dealing with problem resolution we start with recognition of the issue and then take personal ownership of any problems that we encounter, PRIOR to communicating concern to others. Once an area of concern is identified, we ask questions to clearly define it and understand it in detail. We each look at our own individual abilities first to see what can be done “by me” to resolve the problem. Lastly if others need to change their behavior in order for resolution to occur one basic rule applies: We “Speak the truth to one another in love.”

The reason the team works hard to implement the principles in daily work is because the principles were not laid down by me or forced upon the team…they were chosen BY the team.

Welcome to Our Blog

April 24th, 2017

Thank you for taking the time to visit our blog. Please check back often for updates on fun and exciting events happening at our office, important and interesting information about our orthodontics, the dental industry, and the latest news about our practice.

Feel free to leave a comment or question for our doctors and team - we hope this will be a valuable resource for our patients, their families, and friends!

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