It’s question-and-answer time for Kristyn Barker, DDS! Dr. Barker and Smiles by Design have been in business since 2016, but it’s hard to get to know your dentist at your annual exams. Dr. Barker has answered some questions to reveal a little more about herself to her patients.
Questions & Answers with Dr. Barker
Q: Why did you want to become a dentist?
Dr. Barker: “If I’m being fully transparent, I never wanted to be a dentist while growing up. My family dentist kept suggesting it, but I kept declining! I was lucky enough to earn numerous scholarships to varying universities and a full scholarship to the University of Kansas in Voice. I opted to attend KU and majored in Voice Performance. Unfortunately, I decided three years into my education I did not want to continue down the performance career path.
Ultimately, I finished my degree and then tried to figure out what I was going to do in the following year. I thought about dental hygiene school but wanted more of a challenge—and boy dental school sure gave me one! I attended Creighton University School of Dentistry and was admitted on my first application cycle. There were 3,185 applicants for 85 spots.
I knew I wanted to help people and having my smile changed through orthodontics really made a HUGE difference in my personal life. I wanted to pass along some of those life changing moments to others!”
Q: What is your favorite part of your job?
Dr. Barker: “Believe it or not, I’ve got the best team in the business. I really enjoy working with them on a daily basis to change the lives of our patients!”
Q: What advice do you give patients the most often/what’s the most important thing people should know about their oral health?
Dr. Barker: “Patients NEED to know that their oral health can have a BIG impact on systemic health. There are numerous studies linking heart disease to periodontal disease as well as diabetes to oral health. Brushing, flossing, and regular check-ups are CRITICAL!”
Q: What’s something you would never do as a dentist?
Dr. Barker: “After being in dental, I’d never smoke. Not cigars, cigarettes, vaping, cannabis—all have terrible consequences for your oral and systemic health.”
Q: Is there technology is coming up that you are excited about for Smiles by Design or dentistry in general?
Dr. Barker: “We aren’t planning on adding anything major in the upcoming months. This is mainly because we pride ourselves on being up to date with the latest technology. We already offer CEREC same day crowns and intraoral imaging, CBCT scans, minimal radiation by use of the NOMAD handheld x-ray unit and digital radiographic sensors.”
Q: Do you have any hobbies you’d like to share? If so, what are they and why do you enjoy spending your time doing that activity?
Dr. Barker: “I typically love being outdoors. So, winter here in Kansas is rough for me!”
Q: Tell us about Mika! What kind of dog is she? What are her favorite things and personality quirks?
Dr. Barker: “Mika is a one-year old Sheepadoodle (50% Sheepdog and 50% Poodle). I’ve had Sheepdogs in the past but wanted to reduce the chance of genetic disorders. Adding in the poodle brings another element of non-shedding and she’s hypoallergenic! We hope that she’ll be out and about in the office more this year. She’s a funny dog. She often uses her paws to try and “catch” an object. Her current favorite things are KIDS, long walks, playing fetch, TREATS, and basically doing what she wants to. She’s pretty special to all of us and we think she’s been a great addition to our office. And, yes, she gets her teeth brushed.”
Compassionate Dental Care
Dr. Barker and her team at Smiles by Design have created a culture of compassionate, dental care. If you’re looking for a new dentist, Dr. Barker is taking new patients. Contact us to schedule an appointment.