Featuring a Dentist/Entrepreneur On A Mission
We’re thrilled to feature this brilliant mama today for Wellness Wednesday! This mama is the owner and dentist at Pedlar Family Cosmetic & Family Dentistry and sponsored the amazing wine from Messina Hof Winery for our Mom’s Night out event! She’s always supported us and believed in our platform and it means the world to us. Fun fact, Dr. Amber was a Meet a Mom feature in our very early days of starting this community. She’s been taking care of our teeth and mouths ever since and even sees Nat’s kiddos!
Not only is Dr. Amber Pedlar our dentist who makes us feel like we’re going to see a friend rather than a dentist when we come in, but she’s also an entrepreneur on a mission! She’s on a mission to help people sleep better and that’s exactly what she called her business and product, Sleep Better Katy.
Dr. Garcia and her team are one of the few dental offices in the Katy area working with patients and directly with physicians to treat Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) through Oral Appliance Therapy. Patients who show symptoms of OSA will have access to screeners and a sleep test will determine the severity. If needed, the patient will be fitted with a custom oral appliance to be worn while sleeping.
In September, Amber’s company entered a contest for local Houston entrepreneurs and startups and was selected as finalists! It was the Launchpad competition presented by BBVA Compass and the Houston Dynamo and although they weren’t selected as the winner, they were so proud to be top 3 out of all entrees!
Dr. Amber is so knowledgeable about dental hygiene, as well as OSA and truly has helped so many patients get better sleep through what she knows to look for and how to treat.
We sat down with Dr. Amber to talk more about her dental practice and what makes them special and unique in this space, all things oral health and good sleep, as well as got all the updates on Sleep Better Katy and her goals for the future!
Where are you from originally and how long have you lived in the Katy area?
I’m originally from San Antonio but I’ve been in Katy for 6 years.
You are a Mama, too! How old are your kiddos?
I have twin 6 year olds, a boy and a girl, and a 3 year old boy. They keep me on my toes!
When did you decide you wanted to be a dentist and what led you to that career path?
I was actually a dental assistant through college. I knew I wanted to be in the health care field but wasn’t quite sure which direction I wanted to go. Working as a dental assistant made it an easy transition to dental school.
Tell us about Pedlar Dental & Cosmetic Dentistry! When did you open the door?
We opened almost 3 years ago! Our 3 year anniversary will be in December. Our goal in opening our office was to build a comfortable environment for the whole family to be treated. I love watching families grow up with us!!
Why did you start you own practice instead of working at an existing one?
I started my own practice so it could be my own. There’s always something that’s compromised when you buy an existing practice. Either the décor isn’t quite what you want or it isn’t in the exact location you want. It’s always something. I chose everything in this building, top to bottom. And it’s all very me!!
What makes Pedlar Dentistry different and unique to other dental offices?
We make family a top priority!! You’ll typically see a kid or two running around the office. I live very close to my office by design. I try very hard to be available for emergencies. I give out my personal number frequently so parents can facetime me when their kid falls at hits their mouth. We live in the neighborhood so I frequently see my patients at the grocery store or at school events. I want to be as available as I can be when I’m needed and to get to know my patients on a personal level.
What is the biggest mistake people make in their dental hygiene?
The biggest mistake I see is parents not brushing baby teeth!! When the tooth is in the mouth, it needs to be brushed!!
You have also started another business, Congrats! Why did you decide to start Sleep Better Katy and what was the inspiration behind it?
Sleep apnea is becoming an epidemic. And so many people don’t get tested because they know they don’t want to try or won’t use a CPAP machine. It’s a little-known fact that there is another option. A simple oral appliance, similar to a mouthguard, can be custom made to treat sleep apnea as effectively as a CPAP machine. I’m trying to bring awareness to local physicians, dentists, and current CPAP users/haters that there is another option! Treating sleep apnea can extend your life by 8-20 years! We’re just trying to save and extend lives.
At Sleep Better Katy, what are you treating and what is your main goal when treating your patients?
Our goal is to reach those patients who can’t use a CPAP machine due to claustrophobia, allergies, frequent sinus infection from the masks, or whatever reason they have for not using their machine and give them another tried and tested alternative. Our appliances are FDA approved and commonly covered by medical insurance. We really want sleep apnea sufferers to get the treatment and good sleep they desperately need.
What are some reasons someone might come see you at Sleep Better Katy? What are the signs of sleep apnea?
Common signs of sleep apnea are headaches in the morning, clenching or grinding the teeth, snoring, waking up tired after a full night of sleep, or a sleep partner witnessing you holding your breath at night. People I typically see come in for clenching and grinding since that directly affects the teeth. Then we get them tested for sleep apnea to get them in the proper appliance.
How do you treat it? Is a sleep study needed?
A sleep study is needed. It is a simple test you can do in your own home. We work with local and telemedicine doctors to get the study prescribed and administered. Typically a portion of the cost is covered by medical insurance. From there, candidates for oral appliances are scanned and an appliance is made. Some people we find to have severe apnea and help them get a CPAP machine.
What are the biggest misconceptions when it comes to Sleep Apnea?
I think people believe snoring or teeth grinding to be normal. IT ISN’T!!!! You snore because your airway is blocked. You grind your teeth to open your throat to breathe better. So many people die every day from sleep apnea or issues directly related to sleep apnea. The toll it takes on your heart is immense. For some people, their sleep apnea is so bad it makes their heart pound like they’re running a 10K in their sleep. Sleep is for healing and rejuvenation. When you aren’t getting good quality sleep, you are literally killing yourself.
How do you “balance” being a mama of 3 and an owner of 2 businesses?
I have my village around me! It isn’t an easy thing to do on your own so I take all the help I can find. And since I own my businesses, I’m able to block my schedule for my little people when they need me. I’m very grateful for that ability!
Future plans for your businesses?
We are growing very quickly! Our plan for now is to continue that growth and build out more of our office space to accommodate more patients.
Any discounts or specials our moms can look out for?
I love seeing moms and families! Moms can mention Katy Moms Network for $500 off of clear aligners and orthodontic treatment or $500 off of a sleep appliance! Straight and healthy teeth lead to a healthy life. And diagnosing and treating sleep apnea can literally save your life!
For more information on Pedlar Cosmetic & Family Dentistry and Sleep Better Katy: