THIS ISLAND DENTIST DETAILS HIS UNIQUE SPECIALITY OF PROSTHODONTICS
BY JESSICA JONES GORMAN • PHOTOS BY AMANDA DOMENECH
As an ADA certified prosthodontist, Louis F. DeSantis DDS, FACP has focused for the past three decades on the restoration and replacement of teeth, providing care for the residents of Staten Island and beyond. The most gratifying part of his job? Renewing, restoring, and reinventing patients’ smiles.
“Prosthodontists are oral and maxillofacial architects, so basically we design and build,” Dr. DeSantis noted, “We’ve used a tag line for years calling our patients ‘unfinished masterpieces,’ but that’s basically what this field is, a blend of art and science that allows us to enhance a smile, protect weakened teeth, and replace missing teeth naturally.”
The first board certified prosthodontist on Staten Island, DeSantis received his training at New York University College of Dentistry and Montefiore Medical Center, studying the art of veneers, crowns, bridges, and the correction of smile imbalances.
“After my second year of dental school, I still didn’t know where to specialize…was vacillating between periodontics and prosthodontics,” DeSantis recalled. “I was fascinated by periodontal surgery, but the prosthodontics faculty were some of the best practitioners I had ever seen; they were the dental equivalent of military special forces. I wanted to be among their ranks.”
Born and raised in Staten Island and a graduate of New Dorp High School and Wagner College, DeSantis completed fellowships at The International College of Dentists, The American College of Dentists, The Greater New York Academy of Prosthodontics, and The American College of Prosthodontists. He has earned a number of awards, including the Academy of General Dentistry for Outstanding Clinical Senior Student, the Bernard E. Rudner Award for Excellence in Family Practice, and the Sigma Kappa Epsilon Award for Excellence and Highest Honors for Fixed Prosthodontics. He currently serves as associate clinical professor at New York University College of Dentistry in the department of post graduate prosthodontics, mentoring and teaching young doctors working on post doctorate certification.
“I’ve taught and lectured for the past 26 years. As a boarded prosthodontist, I feel a personal obligation to promote and encourage the next generation of students and lend my experience and expertise to them,” DeSantis said. “I also find that my teaching helps me stay current in the industry. To stay relevant in this industry, you have to be within two years of education. If you want to stay on the cutting edge, you have to be on the cutting edge.”
DeSantis’s practice uses the latest in technologies, including digital radiographs, impressions, and CT scanning for dental implants.
“In the early part of my practice, cosmetic bonding was the buzzword, then the shift was towards dental implants and porcelain laminates. The big shift now is the digital revolution,” he said. “The accuracy and speed of this technology is simply amazing, and I’m happy to be a part of the American College of Prosthodontics, which is really taking the lead on this, not only nationally but worldwide.”
He added that one of his most requested services is ceramic metal restoration, and that digital technology can also dramatically decrease the length of that treatment.
“The level of accuracy is so incredible. What once took five visits to complete now takes two,” he said.
DeSantis, who lives with his wife, Gina, and family here on Staten Island, served as the past president of the Richmond County Dental Society, the Italian Dental Society of Greater New York, and the Greater Staten Island Study Club. He has also served the borough as a former board member of the Alice Austin Museum, the Lynn Robbins Steinman Foundation, and Project Hospitality honored by the last with its Les Trautmann Award for “Outstanding Contribution to the People of Staten Island.” Additionally, he was recognized by the American Red Cross for volunteer work providing emergency dental treatment for victims of Hurricane Sandy, and by the American Legion Cespino Russo Post for “Humanitarianism and Patriotism” for his commitment to helping the children of active duty service men and women.
In his leisure time DeSantis can be seen and heard playing his tenor and alto sax.
“I believe that excellence is not just a goal; it is a philosophy and a way of life,” he concluded. “My staff and I are committed to delivering this level of excellence to every patient. As a restorative dental specialist, I work to help them enjoy all the benefits of proper speech, dental function, and aesthetics. I love what I do. I make the world better one smile at a time. How could I not?”
Dr. Louis F. DeSantis
216 Rose Avenue / 718.980.9769 / drdesantis.com