Dr. Lafferty grew up in Salem, Utah, and learned from an early age that he had a passion for working with his hands. After high school he took up work in the construction field with family and friends doing such work as building movie sets in California, installing custom screens and doing intricate specialty work with tile and stone. While living in Portland, Oregon, he was influenced by a good friend to pursue the dental profession. With the support of his wife and young growing family, Dr. Lafferty decided to go back to school to become a dentist.
Dr. Lafferty went on to earn a Bachelors of General Science degree from Portland State University and then a Doctorate of Medical Dentistry degree from Oregon Health and Science University in 2014. Dr. Lafferty’s attention to detail and outstanding clinical skills earned him the Terry Monetti award, an award offered to one student in each graduating class.
Dr. Lafferty qualified for the Health Professions Scholarship Program from the US Navy, and following dental school served four years active duty as a Naval dental officer, and is affectionately referred to as Lieutenant Dan. His impact while serving in Guam could be felt by the community as he headed outreach programs to educate youth on proper oral health and proper hygiene habits. Dr. Lafferty was awarded the Service Before Self award at the end of his tour in Guam.
Dr. Lafferty continues to serve his country by giving time each month to the Navy Reserves here in New Mexico. He ensures that soldiers in the armed forces maintain dental readiness so they are prepared to deploy as needed.
Other passions that Dr. Lafferty enjoys are traveling and learning of other cultures. The two years spent in New Zealand on his proselytizing mission helped him form a deep bond with the Maori people and a respect for their culture. The time spent in Guam working with people from the Micronesian and surrounding islands also helped him develop a love and respect for them. One of the strongest impressions he gained from the islanders is that happiness does not come by owning material items, but that true happiness comes from the bonds we develop between family and friends.
Dr. Lafferty has been married to the love of his life,Toni for 18 years. They have six children together that keep them busy. There is never a dull moment in the home and adventure is always around the corner as the kids all love outdoor activities.
He is a member of the American Dental Association and New Mexico Dental Association and keeps up to date with the latest changes that are happening in dentistry through continuing education.
Here at ABQ Gentle Dentistry we want you to feel welcomed as if you are a member of the family. No matter what your past dental experiences have been or your level of dental anxiety we want you to know we will listen to your concerns and do everything we can to accommodate your needs and to make your dental experience comfortable. Everyone has a voice that needs to be heard, and everyone has a smile that needs to be seen. Let us help you.
Some of my greatest satisfactions have come when seeing how transforming a smile can mean so much to people. It is more than just fixing the teeth, when people feel confident in their smile their whole self image changes and they become happier people. I love seeing this transformative process take place in people and it motivates me to continue striving to help others realize their true smile.