Dr. Ankur Patel was born in Chicago and grew up near his Caring Smiles Dental office in Hoffman Estates. Dr. Patel graduated near the top of his class and received several scholarships for his service and excellence in his coursework before going on to study Molecular Cell Biology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. While there he performed research on both the intrinsic and extrinsic pathways vital for blood clotting to help advance the field of Thrombosis. Dr. Patel also completed an internship at the Vanderbilt Medical Center in Nashville, TN where he spent the summer learning from the brightest minds in a joint dental and medical program (SMDEP). He then went on to the University of Illinois College of Dentistry in Chicago where he obtained his Doctorate of Dental Surgery. While there Dr. Patel enjoyed having the opportunity to help the underserved by completing externships where he provided dental care to low income and underserved populations and at Milestone Dental Clinic in Rockford where he provided dental care for medically compromised patients.
After working for several years at a prestigious dental group he has brought his knowledge and passion for dentistry to his new office to serve the local community including Hoffman Estates, Inverness, Palatine, Barrington, Barrington Hills, South Barrington, Schaumburg and more. Dr. Patel is a Fellow of the International Congress of Oral Implantologists, a member of the American Dental Association, a member of the Chicago Dental Society, and is part of a comprehensive study club with other Dentists and Dental Specialists in order to provide the best care possible.
Question: What led you to pursue Dentistry as a profession?
Dr. Patel: “It was actually an easy decision for me because I love to work with my hands and dentistry allows me to do that everyday. As a youth, I would spend all day constructing model airplanes and cars out of 100’s of tiny pieces and proudly display them around the house. I also loved to draw and would take art classes so that I could be creative with my hands. Then there is a social side of me that enjoys getting to know people and fostering meaningful relationships and in my office I get to meet unique people everyday and I love to see how families grow over the years. The last thing I would say is I always excelled in my studies and particularly in science, so it was a very natural choice to be able to do something I excel at and enjoy everyday and I could not imagine doing anything else.”
Question: How do you provide your patients the best care possible?
Dr. Patel: “I think in order to provide the best care possible you should never stop learning. I think it’s too easy to just use what you learned in school and be content, but without attending hands on courses and being involved in continuing education you cannot possibly learn everything there is to learn to treat all patients and to keep on top of new advancements in our field. I take the time out of my practice to attend seminars and take courses with some of the best teachers around the world. I was recently awarded my Fellowship by the ICOI for my studies and work focusing on Dental Implant treatment. I also meet once a month with other dentists and dental specialists such as orthodontists, endodontists, periodontists, and oral surgeons in my study club to go over complex cases and share knowledge to provide the best care possible. Recently I had the opportunity to learn to treat complex root canal procedures by a pioneer endodontist in the field who patented several of the commonly used instruments still used today. I get excited about learning new advancements that will make treatments easier and more predictable for my patients and never plan to stop learning from the best.”
Question: “What makes your office and style of practicing unique?”
Dr. Patel - “Well that is actually a great question, truth is since a young age my wife was scared of going to the dentist, and so I created an office with all of her suggestions in mind. If she approves of it, then I know I did a good job creating a stress free environment with the right tools to make it a comfortable experience. One thing you will notice is that the office has the finishings of a hotel lobby and has an openness to the rooms and so you do not feel like you are in a typical dental setting and is more relaxing for my patients. We do not have any dental instruments in front of the patients and we play music or videos to alleviate anxiety and pass the time. The dental chairs are made with ultra leather and the large TV’s in each room also serve to help educate you as we can discuss your x-rays and intra-oral pictures together. We also have everything “digital” so it is less radiation, and faster which is more comfortable for the patient. We have unique technology such as the ‘Dental Vibe’ which makes getting numb painless and we use a dental laser to get great results with faster healing times and minimal discomfort as opposed to using the alternative which is a surgical blade.
As far as my style of practicing, I really enjoy getting to know my patients and just listening to your concerns and focusing on what is important to you. I believe everyone is unique and that treatments should be tailored to fit their goals and wishes for themselves. I enjoy teaching my patients about how to keep their mouths healthy and discussing in depth causes of common problem. I will often have patients tell me that it was so refreshing for them to finally understand what’s going on in their mouths.”
Question: What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
Dr. Patel: “That’s an easy one as my wife and I were recently blessed with the addition of our son to our family. We are just loving being parents and sharing our journey with our loved ones. We also like to cook and entertain people so we spend a lot of time with friends and family. Chicago sports has always been a part of my life as well, so I do enjoy rooting on my favorite teams, no matter how hard that may be some seasons (laughs).”