by Joanna Enderlin

The, Your Hometown Advertising Magazine

Any dentist (or doctor or auto mechanic) worth his or her salt will say that waiting to address a problem is never a good idea. When it comes to complicated dental issues, the nagging feeling that there has to be a better way further reinforces the “someday” attitude. At the offices of John C. Cranham, D.D.S., “someday” is now.

Dr. Cranham is a man who knows a thing or two about the rewards of “someday.”

However, 20 years ago, as a newly minted dentist and recent honors graduate from the prestigious Medical College of Virginia, he and his new wife, Kim, struggled financially. But when he learned a three-day seminar was to be presented in St. Petersburg, Florida by his idol, Dr. Peter Dawson, he made the 13-hour drive to St. Petersburg, Florida to attend.

“I couldn’t afford the $300 a night room at the hotel where the seminar took place, but I knew this was important to me. I slept in the car—it was January then and cool even in Florida—and I showered in the bathroom off the hotel’s pool. I just knew I had to be there,” Dr. Cranham laughs, remembering those days  now. “Dr. Dawson literally wrote the book on dentistry—his third textbook is in print now. The man is a living legend and something told me then that stepping out on faith and going to that seminar, even broke, was a part of the plan for my life.”

Dr. Cranham uses lasers instead of drills. Pain is decreased. Bleeding is minimal. No stitches. No brute-force grinding and noise. No kidding.

When Dr. Dawson heard about Dr. Cranham sleeping in his car to attend the seminar, he made it a point to meet the young man. That fast friendship fostered the relationship between the two doctors that eventually led to Dr. Cranham becoming the clinical director of The Dawson Academy.

“We are carrying the torch of international training today in our own facility here in Chesapeake,” Dr. Cranham says. The facility is the realization of Dr. Cranham’s trusting what his heart said to do.

When Dr. Cranham and his wife married 20 years ago, they had already decided to have children “someday.” But a little something happened along the way to “someday.”

His name was Cornell.

Dr. and Mrs. John Cranham had a plan. He was building his practice and training, constantly training. She was dedicated to building her career as an occupational therapist with CHKD. Kim was working in the transitional care unit one day when a tiny baby stole her heart.

“When Kim first told me about Cornell, he weighed less than two pounds and his chances looked grim. He couldn’t even breathe on his own. She asked if I would be willing to become a foster parent to him so that when he was ready to come home, he would have a home. He endured four surgeries, and they had to completely reconstruct his trachea before he could even breathe without a tube.

“He communicated to us through sign language before the surgery but, by then, he had already taught me not to complain. We adopted him when he was three. I am honored every day to be his Dad,” Dr. Cranham says.

“Cornell, like all of us, still has challenges but it is amazing to watch how he deals with those challenges. He doesn’t struggle. He builds on his strengths and simply doesn’t give his weaknesses the time of day. I’ve never seen him waste an ounce of energy on self-pity,” he adds. “I am so proud of the young man he has become.”

Cornell, now 17, attends Western Branch High School. Dr. Cranham, a life-long golf enthusiast, is also proud to say that Cornell is on the golf team there.

Dr. and Mrs. Cranham also have two daughters, 15 year-old Kaitlyn and 12 year-old Kristin.

“When I was traveling and giving seminars, I knew that life was not for me. I always knew, someday, that I wanted to be able to teach and practice what I love without sacrificing time with my family,” Dr. Cranham confides.

Dr. Cranham’s new facility is literally the stuff of the space age. The office is connected to not only his training facility but also to Bay View Dental Lab.

“Because I have focused about one-third of my time over the years on training and teaching, I have been able to keep abreast of every new technology. Because developers of new technology know we are connected to a training facility, we are courted and have access to innovations as they become available,” Dr. Cranham says. “Having what I believe is the best lab anywhere connected to us as well means we have not only real-time communication and access but an actual partnership to serve our patients with real quality control. The ability I have to document cases and then use those cases in training right away keeps me very sharp. I believe our patients are the best served anywhere.”

Dr. Cranham uses lasers instead of drills. Pain is decreased. Bleeding is minimal. No stitches. No brute-force grinding and noise. No kidding.

“What we’ve all been shooting for, knew would someday be possible, is now realized,” Dr. Cranham says. “Before, it was like trying to build a house without a blueprint, without a plan. Now, we can evaluate—definitively—and then diagnose and work toward an ultimate goal that insures not only long-lasting functionality but also exceeding beauty. My patients get to have it all.” He even offers a complimentary “meet and greet” as the first step to a dream smile.

“The full digital workup of evaluation and treatment plan costs only $300 initially and that cost is then applied to the procedures. Insurances cover some costs as well,” Dr. Cranham says. “If patients have financial constraints they must consider, we can sequence procedures over time with the end result being the perfect plan designed just for them. Fear of the cost should not be a factor in making a commitment to the smile you deserve.”

“The difference most of our patients notice right away is the feeling of connectedness,” Dr. Cranham says. “We take our time. We are first and foremost here to help our patients know what is possible for them and then to walk them through the process as smoothly and painlessly as possible. It is amazing what we can do today and how well we can do it. For patients who have been waiting, the time has finally come.”

John C. Cranham, DDS, PC

1207 Volvo Parkway
Chesapeake, VA 23320


Posted in: Cosmetic Dentist Norfolk, Cosmetic Dentistry, The

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