By Brian Dawson/Incisal Edge Managing Editor

Through no fault of their own, two San Diego–area dentists have become catastrophe-preparedness experts. In just the past decade, their practice has been battered by two fires, a major water leak and, this past spring, a car that crashed through their storefront and came to rest in their waiting room.

Take it from Drs. Roger Moynihan and Amy Jessel, the husband-and-wife team behind Mission Family Dentistry in Oceanside, California: Both preparedness and after-the-fact smarts are key.

• KNOW YOUR COVERAGE INSIDE AND OUT. “Be sure your insurance is adequate and that you know what you have,” Dr. Jessel says.

• HAVE A CONTINGENCY PLAN. Only once, after the first fire in 2004, did Mission have to relocate; they worked from a temporary space nearby for eight months.

• A POSITIVE ATTITUDE IS INVALUABLE. “When people ask us about our bad luck, I like to think we actually have a guardian angel hovering over us,” Dr. Jessel says.

• ANY ACCIDENT OFFERS A PREPAREDNESS TEMPLATE FOR NEXT TIME. None of the four incidents was Mission Family Dentistry’s fault; the practice is in a strip mall, and the two fires and the water leak all started in nearby businesses.

Read the complete interview in the latest issue of dental lifestyle magazine Incisal Edge: