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Southern Smiles Brand Element
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Core Values & Beliefs

At Southern Smiles & McNutt Orthodontics we boldly embrace the idea that every patient is worthy of compassion, deserves the highest quality of care, and the needs of our patients come before our own. We believe in going above and beyond what the world expects and we strive to put a smile on your face with our “Southern Hospitality.” Our core values and beliefs are the foundation upon which the entire practice rests.

Core Values
Southern Smiles Orthodontics & Pediatric Dentistry Brand Element

Our Story

Southern Smiles of Cary NC brings the synergy of both Orthodontics & Pediatric Dentistry together side by side. We think they go together like peanut butter and jelly! The Southern Smiles story began in 2020 through the affiliation of the orthodontic practice of Dr. Matthew McNutt and the pediatric dentistry practice of Dr. Daniel Howell. At Southern Smiles we boldly embrace the idea that every patient is worthy of compassion and deserves the highest quality of care, and the needs of our patients come before our own. We believe in going above and beyond what the world expects, and we strive to put a smile on your face with our “Southern Hospitality.”


When you visit us, you will find a fun-loving team that cares deeply about what we do, and if you are lucky, you may visit on a day when Ripley or Shiloh, our golden-doodle comfort dogs, are on paw patrol in the office. In the orthodontic office we treat patients of all ages, from young children to adults, well into their senior years. In our pediatric dental office we treat children from infancy through the teen years. We have a heart for special needs children, many of whom stay in the practice well into adulthood.


Our story starts with pediatric dentist Dr. Dan Howell: Dr. “Dan,” as he is known at the office, was the very first pediatric dentist in Cary, NC, and is a legend in the community. Having founded his practice in 1979, he has cared for generations of children. Cary was still a very small town with only ten dentists. Dr. Dan began a well-deserved break and phased into retirement in 2023. Dr. Dan will continue to work occasionally. He’s a big kid at heart, and we won’t be able to keep him away. Nor do we want to! To learn more about Dr. Daniel Howell, CLICK HERE.


Our story continues with orthodontist Dr. Matthew McNutt: Dr. “Matthew,” as he is known at the office, began his orthodontic career in 1996 while still an undergraduate student at NC State, working as an orthodontic lab tech and assistant for a local orthodontist in both Raleigh & Cary. After completing both dental school and orthodontic residency at UNC Chapel Hill, Dr. McNutt founded his private practice in Cary in 2007. To learn more about Dr. Matthew McNutt, CLICK HERE.


A brand new pediatric office space marked the next exciting chapter in our story. Dr. Dan practiced in the same office in Cary from 1987 until 2022. In the summer of 2022, a new pediatric dental office space began construction in the building next to Dr. McNutt’s orthodontic office in Cary. This enchanting and charming office officially opened in January of 2023 and will bring comfort to children for many years to come.

Our story continues to grow with the addition in 2023 of Pediatric Dentist Dr. Narineh Panoosian, otherwise known in the office as “Dr. Nar.” The pediatric team excitedly welcomed her into to the practice family to carry on Dr. Dan’s legacy. She brings her kindness, compassion, and world-class training to our team. Dr. Nar shares Dr. Dan’s deep passion and commitment to providing the best possible care for children. To learn more about Dr. Narineh Panoosian CLICK HERE.

Everyone who joins our family of patients becomes a part of the Southern Smiles story.

Our Story
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We Are Southern Smiles

Together, we are Southern Smiles.

What story will your smile tell?

Become a patient and let’s find out together!

Southern Smiles Orthodontics and Pediatric Dentisty Brand Element
Mission Statement

Our Mission Statement

Whenever someone new joins our work family, it is important for them to understand our mission statement and embrace our desire to work together as a team to bring our patients the absolute best care and to impact our community in a generous and positive way. Below is what our team members learn and commit to.

Welcome to our team. Our Practice Mission Statement is as follows:

NO. 1

We will strive to provide the highest level of care for our patients and to provide them with exceptional service.

NO. 2

We will deliver this care with compassion, integrity, and excellence.

NO. 3

We will strive to give people an experience that demonstrates we love our patients and are willing to go above and beyond what the
world in general expects. We want people to leave this office wishing that the other places they go would treat them as well
as we do.

NO. 4

We will always strive to do what is in the best interest of our patients.

NO. 5

We will seek to be lifelong learners and continue to improve both our knowledge and our skill in the service of our patients.

NO. 6

We will engage our local community meaningfully through volunteerism, altruism, and direct support. Through these
contributions, we will leave the world a better place.

Southern Smiles Orthodontics and Pediatric Dentistry Brand Element
We Believe

We Believe In LOVE

All of our doctors, clinical team, and administrative team are taught to practice the philosophy of LOVE with each other and with our patients: 

LOVE stands for Listen, Overlook, Value, and Encourage.

We will LISTEN to what others have to say.
We will OVERLOOK the imperfections of others.
We will VALUE what others have to say, and we will VALUE their strengths and contributions.
We will ENCOURAGE others to do what is right and to be the best versions of themselves.


All Southern Smiles & McNutt Orthodontics team members are here to serve our patients. Every
team member is equally important to our practice. What we do and how we do it reflects directly
upon the quality of our work and the reputation and image of the practice as a whole.

Here is what we teach our team members, and we strive to be the best versions of ourselves to bring
these values and beliefs to live each day.

As part of our core values, each team member is expected to:

  1. Be reliable, honest, loyal, courteous, respectful, and accountable.

  2.  Demonstrate servant leadership by placing others above our individual selves.

  3. Take pride in all tasks, no matter how humble the task is.

  4. To take a personal interest in serving our patients. In turn, we hope that all will gain a sense of personal satisfaction from our roles in our practice.

  5. Master and perform their own work with a high degree of quality and efficiency. This will result from a desire to do the best possible job of which we are capable.

  6. Check our own work to ensure a job is well done to the practice standard without cutting corners.

  7. Hold each other accountable in order to protect our own integrity, the integrity of the practice, and to protect the best interests of our patients.

  8. Develop meaningful work relationships with the team and be able to get along peacefully and happily with fellow team members and patients.

  9. Avoid unwholesome talk and gossip, and when we speak of others not present, we will say only what is helpful for building others up in a positive way, that it may benefit those who are listening.

  10. Respect the privacy and dignity of our team members and patient families regardless of sex/gender, race, nationality, sexual orientation, or religious belief.

Whether you are a patient or a team member, you will come to learn what it is like to experience the
LOVE at Southern Smiles.

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