About Us

Kaaren Vargas, DDS


  • DDS: Peruvian University Cayetano Heredia, Lima, Peru
  • PhD: The University of Iowa
  • General Practice Residency: The University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics
  • Certificate in Pediatric Dentistry: Eastman Dental Center Rochester, New York

I was born in Lima, Peru and graduated  as a pediatric dentist from Eastman Dental Center in Rochester, New York, in 1992. I received my PhD in 1998 and taught for 10 years at the University of Iowa College of Dentistry. I have been in private practice for over 15 years and have served on numerous national and international pediatric dentistry committees and organizations.

I became Board Certified in Pediatric Dentistry in 2000 and served for six years on the board of directors of the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry. I am a member of multiple professional organizations and have written numerous articles and book chapters pertaining to many aspects of pediatric dentistry, including sedation, growth and development and treatment of the pulp in primary and permanent teeth. I have also lectured both nationally and internationally.

Professional Associations

  • American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry
  • Iowa Academy of Pediatric Dentistry
  • American Board of Pediatric Dentistry
  • American Dental Association
  • Iowa Dental Society
  • International Association of Pediatric Dentistry

I have lived in Iowa for over 30 years. My husband Kevin and I have between us five grown children: Kate, Kori, Karli, Sebastian and Cecilia, and six grandchildren. We love animals and share four dogs, four cats, three chickens and two horses. When not practicing dentistry, I can be found playing racquetball and pickle ball with my husband.

Cecilia Vargas, DDS

I am a native Iowan, born and raised in Iowa City. I went to school at Regina, graduated with a BS in Biochemistry, Molecular and Cell Biology from Drake University in Des Moines and with a DDS from The University of Iowa College of Dentistry in 2024, and was honored to receive the Wallace Johnson Award for Excellence in Operative Dentistry and The Award of Merit from the Society for Color and Appearance in Dentistry. I also was named Outstanding Dental Student in Implant Dentistry.

I  have  wanted to be a dentist since  I was nine years old, and I have worked in my mother’s practice off and on since high school. Both my parents are dentists and have instilled in me the importance of doing the very best to strive for excellence in patient care every day. 

    When I am not in the office, you can find me spending time with my two cats, Pam and Winston, or out and about with my spouse Tate rollerblading or looking for a great place to eat.  

    Truly and Pacha

    When it is not super cold or rainy, you can find us walking around the dental office, enjoying pets from both patients and parents, and, maybe … just maybe … trying to steal anything tasty that you have brought in with you! We love to sit right next to you in the waiting room, or even on your lap, if you let us.