Dr. Ioannou is the newest member of the Greater Houston Orthodontics team. Her tech-forward and patient-first approach is a perfect match for the high-quality orthodontic treatment that we provide to our community. Get to know Dr. Ioannou by reading our interview with her below:
What impacted your decision to become an orthodontist?
“Looking back I think it was a combination of my environment and a personal passion. A few of my family members are in healthcare and my grandmother is a dentist and my mom an orthodontist. Since I was little, I was drawn to my mom’s practice. I would take my friends there, I would pretend I was examining them and I would make up games around it. I was very naturally curious and drawn to orthodontics, so my mother never actually tried to talk me into taking this path. When I made the decision to go to dental school, I wanted to keep an open mind and give all specialties a chance but nothing came close to orthodontics. I love how orthodontics has the perfect balance of treating for function and aesthetics, how it addresses details that might involve certain teeth and extends to treating the skeletal structure and the whole face. A lot of orthodontic cases involve cooperation with other specialties (i.e. surgery or other restorations) which creates a teamwork approach for these types of multi-disciplinary cases. It also gives me the opportunity to work with different age groups.”
Is there an age group you most enjoy working with?
“One of the reasons I love orthodontics is the opportunity to work with all the different age groups. With adolescents and teens, it’s amazing to watch them grow and help give them a smile that they get to enjoy for the rest of their lives. Adults are usually more detail driven cases. They come with concerns they might have had for years that prevent them from feeling comfortable when smiling. It can be so rewarding to help someone achieve a smile they love and feel confident in.”
What treatment technique or orthodontic technologies do you find most exciting?
“Over the years multiple techniques and appliances have been developed and I am a big proponent of choosing the right appliance customized for each patient’s specific needs. Digital technologies have dramatically improved the level of care we can provide. You can see every little detail and design your treatment accordingly. I also enjoy exploring the benefits of hybrid treatment where utilizing the strength of each appliance can bring amazing results. One good example would be starting treatment with braces and finishing with aligners.”
What area of orthodontics did your research focus on?
“My master thesis was on patient compliance and the amount of Class II correction achieved depending on the hours of appliance wear. Orthodontic treatment is a joint effort with the patient and certain treatment plans will only work if a patient does their part. This is why I feel it’s so important to take the time to work with each patient to design a treatment plan that will be successful for them.”
What’s the most exciting thing about helping a patient achieve their dream smile?
“Their reaction when I first show them the result in the mirror!”
What are your hobbies or interests?
“I love photography, traveling, dancing, art and good food. I like challenging workouts and I recently got back into tennis and yoga. Next thing I want to try is rock climbing!”
Tell us more about your interest in photography. How do you think your work as a photographer is related to your work as an orthodontist or vice versa?
“My favorite thing about photography is how it captures a unique moment in time. I also love how creative it can be. Its connection with orthodontics is big, both for the orthodontist due to its diagnostic value, as well as for the patient who will get to see their new smile captured again and again in photographs.”
Tell us about your community service. What motivated you to become active in your community and are there any particular causes that are closest to your heart?
“I had the feeling of wanting to help others from a young age, the first time I volunteered was in elementary school for the Special Olympics. Later, I volunteered at the Red Cross for several years. My current focus is around helping initiatives that support mental health, as well as those that provide support for people who face discrimination.
How would your friends or family members describe you in three words?
I had to ask a friend to give an honest answer and I got: compassionate, approachable but bold.”