BRO’s Cleft Lip & Palate Team

“Since the day I started Blue Ridge Orthodontics, it was my dream to be able to start a Cleft Lip and Palate Team for Western North Carolina. Starting as a young teenager and into early adulthood, I had the fortune of working with my father, a plastic surgeon, on medical mission trips in the Dominican Republic and South America where the focus was cleft lip and palate surgery. This left a lasting impression on me, and during dental school, I was able to work in the Department of Craniofacial Plastic Surgery at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia with the most complex cleft patients.  As I moved into my orthodontics residency, I was able to continue my training on the Cleft and Craniofacial Team in the Department of Orthodontics at Virginia Commonwealth University. Since starting Blue Ridge Orthodontics, I was able to develop relationships over the years to make it feasible to operate a multidisciplinary Cleft Lip and Palate Team based here in Asheville, NC.

This is a wonderful addition to our community, as oral and facial clefting is one of the most common developmental differences. Until our team formed, patients and their families routinely had to travel to Charlotte, Winston-Salem, Chapel Hill or Duke to see a cleft team. Our team is one of only six cleft teams in all of North Carolina, and our goal is to serve these patients with world-class care.”

–  Dr. Roberts

Dr. Roberts

Our Team Members

Speech Pathology

a professional who will perform a comprehensive speech evaluation and closely monitor your child throughout all developmental stages.


a professional who provides guidance and counseling for your child and your family regarding the social and emotional aspects of a craniofacial difference and assists your family with community resources and referrals.

Otolaryngologist (Ear, Nose, and Throat)

a physician who will assist in the evaluation and management of ear infections and hearing loss that may be side effects of your child’s craniofacial difference.


a dentist who evaluates and cares for your child’s overall oral health.


a specialized dentist who evaluates the position and alignment of your child’s teeth and jaws and coordinates a treatment plan with the oral surgeon and other specialists.

Oral Surgery

a specialized surgeon that repairs clefting of the hard and soft tissue within the palate and performs jaw surgery to restore esthetics and function.


a professional who will assist in the evaluation and management of hearing difficulties.


a professional who reviews the medical and family history to guide diagnosis.

What is a Cleft Lip and Palate?

Cleft lip and cleft palate are birth abnormalities of the mouth and lip.

  • Can affect 1 in every 700 births
  • Occurs in the first trimester of pregnancy
  • Results from a combination of genetics and environmental factors
  • The chances of a child inheriting the condition from their parent is around 2% to 8%
  • Can be associated with other genetic diseases
  • Because genetics are involved, the chance for a second child to be born with a cleft lip or cleft palate is increased

What can cause a Cleft Lip & Palate?

A cleft lip or palate happens when the structures that form the upper lip or palate fail to join together during development. The exact reason why this happens is often unclear.

Some examples of causes can be:

  • Family history
  • Exposure to certain substances during pregnancy (alcohol, cigarettes, or certain medications)
  • Diabetes
  • Obesity

We would love to help you! Contact our Cleft Lip & Palate team by filling out the form below, email  [email protected] or call 828.687.0872

Cleft Lip and Palate Consultation

Meet The Rest of Our Team in WNC

Our friendly, professional team delivers high-quality orthodontic care and outstanding customer service. We’ll greet you with a smile, treat you with a smile — all while working to improve your smile.

Our staff is constantly learning, mentoring one another and in training – from on-site workshops on customer service, to targeted seminars for specific departments. We’re proud to have grown to more than 35 team members, all of whom are here for you!