Dr. Oettinger grew up in Kinston, NC, about two hours east of Southern Pines. While working towards becoming an Eagle Scout, he encountered the leadership of several dental community members in Kinston, which led him to consider dentistry as a career. After receiving an undergraduate degree in Philosophy from UNC-Chapel Hill, he had a short career in real estate before pursuing his goal of becoming a dentist. Prior to his formal dental education, Dr. Oettinger completed post-baccalaureate work at UNC while serving as a full-time intern for one of his now-mentors, Dr. Steve Hart, in Chapel Hill, where he developed a deep interest in Prosthodontics.
Dr. Oettinger earned his Doctor of Dental Medicine in 2008 from the University of Louisville School of Dentistry, graduating first in his class as the only Summa Cum Laude graduate that year. During dental school, he participated in a clinical externship with the 2nd Dental Battalion, United States Navy, at Camp Lejeune, NC. While in dental school, he received recognition as a National Board Part I Scholar and a Dean’s Scholar; selection by the Dean as a Humana Scholar; receipt of the Hanau Prosthodontics Award, the Southeastern Academy of Prosthodontics Award, the Horace Wells Senior Student Award, and the Alpha Omega Award among others, as well as induction into both Omicron Kappa Upsilon national dental honor society and the honor society of Phi Kappa Phi.
He then completed a three-year residency in Prosthodontics at the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Dentistry and the Birmingham VA Medical Center. This intensive training in complex oral rehabilitation emphasized both the surgical placement and prosthetic restoration of dental implants. Dr. Oettinger holds two Certificates of Advanced Education in Prosthodontics.
In 2011 Dr. Oettinger and his family came to Southern Pines, transitioning into private practice with Dr. Herbert “Buzz” King and Dr. William “Bill” Sulik. Following the tradition of Drs. King and Sulik, and in the spirit of Dr. Hart’s mentorship, Dr. Oettinger’s practice is focused on relationships, both with his colleagues in the local and surrounding communities who entrust him with the treatment of their patients’ complex dental needs by referral and with those patients as well.
Dr. Oettinger has extensive experience working with patients with significant dental problems, and his particular area of interest is dental implant therapy, including their surgical placement. He is committed to lifelong learning and regularly attends local, regional, and national dental meetings, where he stays abreast of clinical and scientific advances. He has held an appointment as an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Prosthodontics at the UNC School of Dentistry and has assisted in clinical instruction of dental students and Prosthodontic residents.