Ohana Means Family…

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My favorite quote from Disney’s “Lilo and Stitch” is…. “Ohana means family. Family means no one gets left behind or forgotten.”  My summer has been blessed with “Ohana”!!  Our college age children Kyle and Ryan were home working this summer and our downsized empty nest was full!!  It is wonderful to experience my children as they get older and wiser (yes they get wiser)…we had many interesting conversations about life and their plans for the future.  Momma couldn’t be more proud as they navigate their way through life.
We recently got to experience “da kine” Ohana in Oahu with an amazing family vacation thanks to Lovey… (Mom).  I have gained an appreciation for the precious time that I got to spend with my immediate and extended family.  The highlights were the surprise luau that my brother Joseph and I hosted for my Mom’s 80th birthday.  Her reaction was priceless and worth all the effort!!  I also loved visiting my 91 year old Uncle Arthur… seeing him reminded me of how much I miss my Dad who has been gone now for 15 years.  Beach bumming, walking, hiking, surfing, eating, eating, eating and hanging out with family made it the perfect vacation.  I cherished the moments!
In googling the definition of “Ohana”, I read the following..  Ohana, the Hawaiian word for family, extends beyond core family to include both blood and informally-adopted kin.  There are many benefits to belonging to an ohana, and there are responsibilities and obligations as well.  First and foremost to behave responsibly with integrity, so your ohana is pleased to claim you.   Now I understand why this Hawaiian word resonates loudly with me… ( not just because Dad was from Kauai) it’s because I can apply it’s meaning to all the Ohana families that I am blessed to be a part of…. New Image Dental Ohana, Girlfriends Ohana,  Dental Masterminders Ohana, Kois tribe Ohana,  Dentistry for Humanity Ohana and the list goes on.
If I approach being a part of these families with “Ohana” in mind… I will be a better version of myself.
So remember to be grateful for ALL the Ohanas  in your life and ask yourself…  are they pleased to claim you?? 
Leslie Strommer, DDS
7510 Hazard Center Drive, Suite 203
San Diego, CA 92108

Life Lessons from Costa Rica….. Pura Vida!!



My family recently returned from an amazing vacation in the beautiful country of Costa Rica.   Not only is the landscape of the country majestic and breathtaking at times, there is an unmistakable positive vibe that permeates the country and is experienced when interacting with the Ticos (native Costa Ricans).

Everywhere we went, we were  greeted with “Pura Vida!”, and bid farewell with the same.  In researching this phrase, I discovered in Spanish it means “pure life”.  The Ticos explain that they live “the good life” and they truly embody the lifestyle.  I also read that it is about being free and living life to it’s fullest without regrets, it’s an attitude.

I came to the realization that with every “Pura Vida” we were greeted with was accompanied by a BIG SMILE!!  The smiles and laughter were the reason why “Pura Vida” had so much meaning!    As a dentist, I did notice there were many smiles with missing, yellow, discolored, crooked teeth that could have certainly used some of my help… but regardless, it didn’t stop anyone from smiling!

So… my life lesson from Costa Rica is this:

Did you know that your smile is a gift that we can give away everyday?

Be generous… spread some love today and SMILE!!!

Pura Vida!!


Leslie Strommer, DDS

New Image Dental

7510 Hazard Center Drive, SD, CA 92108



The Affordable Care Act Has NO Teeth!!

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Obamacare and the ACA has no requirements when it comes to adult dental care. There are some provisions for children’s dental services as an essential health benefit, but dental coverage for adults has been ignored.  The American Dental Association president has stated, “We’re concerned about it because the law does not draw attention to the fact that oral health is very critically involved in overall health.”  Reports have shown that emergency room visits for dental emergencies have almost doubled from 2000 to 2010.

It appears that people are not getting dental care early enough to prevent  life threatening emergencies.

The good news is that if you currently have dental benefits from your employer, the policy will unlikely change.  However, many corporations will modify their medical benefits to be in compliance with the new laws.

We consider our patients with dental insurance coverage VERY fortunate!!  Dental insurance is designed to help cover dental costs and acts like a dental discount plan in many cases.   Medical insurance and dental insurance are very different and we make sure to do our part in educating about their insurance coverage.   Health Savings and Medical Savings Accounts (HSA’s and MSA’s) have become frequently used to pay for dental services with pre-tax dollars.

We hear quite often …. “I haven’t been to the dentist in a while because I don’t have dental insurance”.

Our response …. “Why not?”

Of course the answer usually involves a financial concern and we totally understand that a “dental budget” is not something many people put on the family spreadsheet.

At New Image Dental, we believe that dentistry changes lives and we get to see and experience that everyday in our practice!  We believe that investing in dentistry and your oral health is one of the best investments you could make!!   This is why our practice exists and what we stand for when it comes to our patient care.

To help our patients with dental care costs, we offer a great alternative to traditional insurance with our premier dental membership plan.

Benefits include:

Free simple teeth cleanings (up to two per year)
Free complete annual dental exam (up to two per year)
Free x-rays for complete annual exam(s) – includes 3D Scan
Free teeth whitening
A 15% savings on all dental procedures
A 15% savings on all implant services
A 10% savings on all orthodontic services
The cost is $329  a year which amounts to $27 a month. (That is about the same as a 2x/week Starbucks  habit! )

The moral of our story is early dental care is the easiest, least expensive, cheapest, simplest way to go.

We remind our patients to only take care of the teeth that they WANT to keep!!

Cheers to your dental health!!

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Dr. Leslie Strommer


New Image Dental   619-280-9100