This past Friday, our entire office staff attended a day-long dental conference held at the Oncenter Conference Center. We had a great day filled with learning as well as reconnecting with our area colleagues in dentistry.
We started with a tour of the exhibit hall, where vendors from companies from dental laboratories to dental equipment, and from toothpaste makers to bone graft purveyors were there to display, demonstrate, and promote their products. With coffee in hand, we perused their wares and tried to deflect their pitches.
Our staff then split up into three groups to attend their relevant lectures. The administrative staff attended a seminar presented by Robin Wright, PhD, from Evanston, Illinois. She has an international reputation as a dental communication specialist. She covered a wide range of topics, from learning to listen more effectively, helping with financial arrangements, to insurance issues and being devoted to great patient service.
The dental hygienists attended a seminar presented by Judy Bendit, RDH, BS. She holds an adjunct faculty position at the Temple-Kornberg School of Dentistry in Philadelphia, and has written and lectured extensively in the United States and Canada. Her morning session was titled “The Myths, Legends, and Realities of OTC Products”. She reviewed specific products, from mouthwashes to toothpastes and tooth brushes. She also discussed the importance of taking a skeptical approach to the myriad of manufacturer’s claims, and suggested ways and sources for researching products and their claims. The afternoon session was devoted to ergonomics. The hygienists learned about proper patient and hygienist positions, instrument layout and use, proper lighting, and room layout to minimize physical stressors on joints and muscles.
Finally, the doctor staff attended a seminar titled “Smile Design, Bonding, and Esthetic Materials Update” by Dr. Gerard Chiche, DDS. Dr. Chiche is world-renowned in esthetic dentistry, has authored several textbooks on the subject, and is currently the Chairperson of the Prosthodontic Department at the LSU School of Dentistry. His all-day presentation covered a wide range of topics with a lot of technical detail from his active research. The subjects included facial esthetics, proper tooth shapes and proportions, the effects of esthetics and function in occlusal schemes, and a lot about the rapidly developing improvements in dental ceramics. It was a great information-dense lecture with a lot of material we plan to apply in our practice soon.
We all enjoyed our day away to be exposed to the latest information, technology, and product offerings in the field of dentistry. We are happy to invest in our education to be able to serve our patients at the highest level they deserve.