Dr. Brad Bynum, DMD, 2024 Safe Sedation Dentist of the Year

From mastering DOCS sedation training to unlocking the wonders of compassionate care, Dr. Bynum's insights are a must-read for aspiring dentists and dental professionals seeking to take their practice to the next level.

By Genni Burkhart, Editor

Dr. Brad Bynum, DMD

With 44 years of experience, Dr. Brad Bynum, DMD, has honed his skills and transformed his Valdosta, Georgia, dental practice, North Valdosta Dental Care, with his expertise in sedation dentistry. His extensive training and proficiency with over 1,000 sedation cases have allowed him to provide exceptional dental care with a compassionate touch.

When asked if he ever pictured practicing dentistry without sedation, his response was unwavering: "Sedation dentistry has revolutionized my practice, allowing me to offer an unparalleled dental experience for my patients. It's a game-changer!"

Dr. Bynum earned a BS in Microbiology from the University of Georgia and a DMD from the Medical College of Georgia in 1980. He's a member of the American Dental Association (ADA), an honorary fellow of the Georgia Dental Association, and an active member of the American Academy of Implant Dentistry. He received his Mastership in the Academy of General Dentistry in 2015 and his Fellowship from DOCS Education in 2006.

Three doctors work in Dr. Bynum's practice, all of whom have had sedation dentistry training from DOCS Education.

Dr. Bynum states, "We consider ourselves a general dental practice since we provide full-mouth reconstruction using K7 technology and guided implant placement using Planmeca CBCT and Asiga 3D printers. Additionally, we place PRGF with bone grafts, use Itero Scanners for Invisalign, and use them for crown and bridge procedures. Furthermore, we provide endodontic treatment, removable partial dentures, Geneva Dentures, dental fillings, cleanings, and nonsurgical periodontal care."

A Legacy of Sedation Dentistry

After practicing sedation dentistry since 2002, Dr. Bynum states, "Early on, I thought 10% of patients had high fear, but it did not take me long to realize it was closer to 75%. Patients manage to hide it very well."

Amanda, the office manager at North Valdosta Dental Care, further explains, "Sedation has allowed our practice to help patients overcome their dental fears and enjoy visiting the dentist. It's amazing to see patients progress from anxiety at their first appointment and fully relaxed and satisfied after treatment. It's a full-circle transformation and makes everything we do worthwhile. Patients come back smiling from ear to ear."

From the business aspect, sedation dentistry has allowed Dr. Bynum's practice to see more productive cases – patients who choose sedation tend to do more treatment all at one visit. Most of their patients desire to have the dental care they need. However, some struggle with dental anxiety. Those patients want to care for everything at once when they come in. Sedation dentistry allows these patients to get the care they need (and want) without fear.

Reflecting on his 44 years practicing dentistry and 22 years of using DOCS protocols, Dr. Bynum remarks, “I feel history will judge Dr. Silverman as one of those few remarkable visionaries who have had a tremendous impact on our profession in the last 100 years. He has assembled an excellent faculty: Dr Leslie Fang, Dr. Anthony Feck, Dr. Carol Wilson, and Jim Bovia, EMT-P. He continues, “I’m thankful for the vision, commitment, and tireless effort in making DOCS Sedation protocols available to every dentist across the United States. I know my patients are incredibly grateful.”

Personal Life

Married for 33 years, Dr. Bynum and his wife, Vicki, have two sons, Bradley and Aulden. An avid lifelong Georgia Bulldogs fan, one of his proudest moments was when his son Aulden played for the Bulldogs in the Rose Bowl and 2017 National Championship game. During his free time, Dr. Bynum likes playing golf and bass fishing on the beautiful lakes in Georgia and Florida.

Giving Back

Since 2017, Dr. Bynum's practice has participated in Smiles for Freedom (SFF) (missing 2020 due to COVID) and donated over $141,000 to veterans.

Supporting the Children's Advocacy Center (CAC) of Lowndes County is one of their team's favorite community involvements. Annually, the CAC assists over 700 children and families who have been the victims of abuse. Dr. Bynum and his team are passionate about supporting the CAC by purchasing Christmas presents for these children and attending their annual fundraising dinner.

Sedation Dentistry: A Case Study

"Our patients are so grateful for sedation dentistry."

While some dentists consider dental fear the primary reason a patient requests sedation, Dr. Bynum has found that many patients use sedation to relax due to the length of the procedures.

“'Peggy' was a 65-year-old patient who came to our practice missing the enamel on her teeth. She had a super erupted molar on her lower right, responsible for her issues. She recently moved to our area but told us she had not visited the dentist in years due to fear. She stated that she only came because she was on a porch swing with a grandchild, and the child looked at her and said, ‘Grandmother, let's go inside and brush our teeth.’

“Peggy was very embarrassed. It took courage, but she called. Our team developed a special relationship with Peggy. We did a K7 workup for her occlusion issues and full mouth reconstruction. She continued her routine visits and, without fail, would walk into our reception area and ask, ‘Do I have to be here?’

“Peggy has since moved back to Atlanta, and we miss her.”

Beyond Financial Rewards

Dr. Bynum explains how sedation dentistry has impacted his practice and patients.

"I have always been on the leading edge of new procedures and continuing education. So, the sedation techniques I learned through DOCS were a natural fit for our practice. It has always been said that 50% of the population only goes to the dentist if there is a severe emergency. Another 25% go sporadically. Much of people's lack of dental care is due to fear. Now I realize that much psychology is also linked to the mouth. It is the gateway to our body; it is our sex appeal; it's how we nourish ourselves, and it's how we communicate.

“Our smile can lift those around us. However, whenever we enter a patient's mouth, we invade their space. I find many patients are fearful due to an unpleasant dental experience in the past. They stay away due to this fear.

“As their mouth deteriorates, the fear is multiplied by embarrassment. Their teeth and smile become so unsightly that they are embarrassed to seek help until they have no choice. So, when you have all the psychological components involved with the oral cavity and add fear and embarrassment, it overwhelms many patients. To overcome all these factors, sedation dentistry is the only choice."

For aspiring dentists or those looking to expand their services, Dr. Bynum is a perfect example of how venturing into sedation dentistry opens up a lucrative and mutually beneficial opportunity for patients and dentists alike. As he wisely advises, “The benefits of offering sedation dentistry go beyond financial rewards. It not only allows dentists to perform more comprehensive dentistry in fewer appointments but also satisfies the patient's need for efficient and convenient treatment.” He concludes, “Mastering comprehensive dentistry and incorporating sedation dentistry using DOCS Education training and protocol, dentists can create a practice filled with delighted patients while experiencing a sense of fulfillment in providing the best possible care.”


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Author: With over 14 years as a published journalist, editor, and writer, Genni Burkhart's career has spanned politics, healthcare, law, business finance, technology, and news. She resides in Northern Colorado, where she works as the Editor in Chief of the Incisor at DOCS Education.

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