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Shaw chooses Ellsworth for first dental practice

For Dr. Krisan Shaw, becoming a dentist was a natural fit.

"I'm artistic and I enjoy the sciences," Shaw said Thursday, explaining how she decided a dental career would enable her to take advantage of both.

Likewise, Ellsworth was a logical choice when it came time to begin her first dental practice. She grew up in the small Central Wisconsin community of Vesper, population 300, so serving a rural clientele would be ideal, she thought. Besides, her new location isn't far from River Falls, where she's been practicing.

Shaw Family Dental is to open in Dr. John Laughlin's west end building early next month.

Ownership allows her to purchase and incorporate the modern technologies she's been trained on, she said. Ellsworth will be getting a state-of-the-art dental facility.

"I'm a CE junkie," she said, noting she appreciates the digital age.

The new office will have networked computer systems allowing for efficiency and access to patient information at multiple locations, she said. Patients no longer have to wait at the reception desk to schedule appointments, but will be able to schedule right in the operatory. Each operatory will have two flat screens, one for the doctor and one for the patient to view.

"We also offer digital x-rays," she said.

Digital is safer and decreases the radiation exposure to the patient, she said. There's no wait time or messy chemicals for the office to deal with. As soon as the x-ray is taken, it appears on an LCD flat screen in front of the patient.

"And the software allows us to enhance or blow up images to increase diagnostic skills," she said.

Patients can become active in the diagnosis process with intra-oral cameras, according to Shaw. The camera takes live time video and can capture snapshots to project on the patient's LCD screen for education. Now, instead of being told about decay or a cracked tooth, patients are able to actually see what the doctor is seeing and become co-partners in diagnosis and treatment.

"Overall, patients will be delighted by the advancements in technology and can expect the continuation of my high level dental performance, compassion and professionalism," she said. "With a focus on comprehensive family and cosmetic dentistry, the needs of the patient will be put before all others and we strive to create a comfortable atmosphere, surrounded by staff of superior integrity. We will exceed patients' expectations."

Opening of the new office, at 375 Kinne St., which has housed Health Centered Dentistry, is scheduled for Wednesday, May 10, Shaw said. Patients will be treated on Mondays and Thursdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Wednesdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

"We service all dental needs: fillings, cleanings, crowns, dentures, whitening," she said. "Our focus is comprehensive, quality patient care for the entire family...delivered with education and technology. My special interests include children's dentistry (pediatrics), gum tissue (periodontal) and cosmetic dentistry...where I have received certification in postdoctoral training from the University of Minnesota in 2005."

It was after her graduation from dental school at the U of M that she and husband Paul, also from a small town (Owen), were drawn to Pierce County, Shaw said. He's a sanitarian with S.C. Johnson Company.

For the last seven years, she's practiced in River Falls, "treated wonderful patients, worked with a fabulous staff and received mentoring from Dr. Dennis Simpson," she said.

"But my aspirations are to be an owner, and my entrepreneurial spirit has led me to opening a practice in Ellsworth," she said.

The Shaw's live in River Falls and have acreage in Elmwood, where they'd eventually like to build, she said. They have two girls: Jordan, age two, and Ali, nine months. They enjoy boating, and personal interests include family, fishing, scrapbooking and gardening.

Shaw Family Dental will treat patients Mondays and Thursdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Wednesdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.