Dental collaboration opens in Cottonwood Crossing

Dr. Darren Norby, center, and his Albuquerque team pose for a group photo during the opening day of the Aspen Dental and ClearChoice Dental Implant Center on Thursday, July 14, 2022 in Albuquerque, NM. (Courtesy of Andres Leighton/AP Images for Aspen Dental)

Two new dental facilities opened next door to each other in Cottonwood Crossing on Albuquerque’s West Side on July 14.

The two aren’t competitors; the Aspen Dental and ClearChoice Dental Implant Centers, located at 10010 Coors NW, are intentionally placed next to each other to make receiving dental care more convenient for Albuquerque residents. While the two businesses are independently owned, they share office and lab spaces. ClearChoice prosthodontist Dr. Darren Norby said that doctors at the two facilities collaborate and share expertise.

“Their service is pretty exceptional and incredibly unique,” Norby said. “… If you can get specialists under one roof, working together, then the patient outcome will be better.”

Because the lab space is shared, the two companies can make a bigger investment in dental technology, Norby added.

By bringing the two facilities together, patients can receive more varied services than they would at a traditional dentist’s office; according to Norby, they can get multiple services taken care of “in one day, in one office.”

Aspen Dental offers everything from regular checkups and cleanings to oral surgery and denture care, and ClearChoice focuses on creating dental prosthetics to replace damaged teeth. The co-location in Albuquerque is the first of its kind in the nation, although more collaborations between Aspen Dental and ClearChoice are planned.

“We’re kind of pioneering it,” Norby said.

Norby has worked in Albuquerque as a specialist in rebuilding and replacing damaged or missing teeth for the past 11 years. Although he still operates his own private practice, he said he was excited by the new opportunity to work with other dentists at ClearChoice.

“Taking a patient who has been without teeth or struggling with dentures and put them in permanent teeth that will allow them to eat, to speak, and to have their life back is so rewarding,” Norby said.

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