Christopher Johnson


AAS in Dental Hygiene
West Los Angeles College

Most people either loved going to the dentist as a kid—or absolutely hated it. Where did you fall? How come? I saw the same dentist my whole life until I moved away from L.A. Because of the familiarity and his great chairside manner, it was always a positive experience. As a dental professional, I have always tried to emulate that personable character and try to set my patients at ease.

What’s the most rewarding part of your job? I love the relationships I build with my patients. I have people with whom I am picking up on the same conversation we paused six months before. Also, it's very rewarding when I have actually made a positive impact on somebody's dental health.

What’s your dream toothpaste flavor? Saffron and cardamom! One of my favorite desserts is kheer, a rice pudding that uses those particular spices and I think they would be so refreshing in a toothpaste.

What’s something your patients might be surprised to learn about you? Dental hygiene is my fifth career, at least. I have scooped ice cream, been a delivery messenger, edited movies, been a massage therapist, sold wine and spirits, and I had a brief stint as a bartender (okay, that makes it the seventh).

In another life, if you weren’t working in dentistry, what would you be doing? I would be a sage. No really—I would just study and learn about things, especially history. And travel. Can I choose international traveller?

When I’m in the patient chair, I’m probably grooving to {blank} in my headphones. One of the longer, noise-laden, never-ending jams by Sonic Youth, Yo La Tengo, or the like.