Progressive orthodontics for the GDP – Tif Qureshi Clinical Director IAS Academy

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  Posted by: The Probe      26th January 2020

The British Orthodontic Society (BOS) found that orthodontic treatment remained popular among UK adults in 2019.[i] Approximately 75% of orthodontists surveyed had seen an increase in private adult patients, while more than half attributed this to improved patient awareness of the options available.

With a clear demand for orthodontics among the population, it stands to reason that more GDPs are getting involved in the field. For patients, the benefits of anterior alignment solutions compared to comprehensive orthodontics often include shorter treatment times, lower costs and, in the case of removable appliances, greater discretion.

There are just as many advantages for GDPs. They are able to develop their skill set, diversify their daily routines and provide patients with what they want for greater job satisfaction. Orthodontics also commonly offers a less invasive alternative to restorative solutions like full-prep veneers, enabling dentists to preserve natural tooth structure while still achieving the aesthetic transformation their patients seek.

Understanding limitations

However, that is not the end of the story. As in all dental disciplines, it is crucial that GDPs understand their limitations and do not attempt to treat a case beyond their clinical remit. Providing ineffective or inappropriate treatment opens the door to several problems, not least of which are patient dissatisfaction and the potential for litigation. As such, it is vital that GDPs work with specialists in the field when a complex case presents, as only they have the expertise and experience to deliver acceptable outcomes in a safe way.

This necessitates high quality professional training that teaches GDPs the skills they need to not only perform quality treatment, but to also identify cases where a referral to an orthodontist is required.

Training

Finding the training courses best suited to you and your existing capabilities is a must. For those just starting out in orthodontics, comprehensive education that provides a broad foundation in the field will be the best starting point. It should include both theoretical and practical elements to ensure you develop the competency and confidence to treat simple cases in practice.

From here, on-going training is important to progress skills effectively. This continuous education enables GDPs to consolidate what they’ve learnt so far on courses and in practice, and build upon their knowledge. It’s important that clinicians gain experience in delivering treatment between courses so as to progress at an appropriate pace.

Consideration should also be given to what the training covers. For example, if it focuses solely on using a specific appliance, it may not provide a comprehensive grounding in orthodontics. Training that explores concepts behind occlusion and function, as well as aesthetics, would be preferable as this encourages stable results.

In addition, for GDPs dedicated to minimally invasive dentistry, the association between orthodontic and restorative techniques should be acknowledged. Where anterior alignment is delivered to improve the smile, restorative bonding can help to optimise the appearance of the teeth and deliver an exceptional result that the patient will love. Similarly, interceptive restorative dentistry combined with simple orthodontics can provide a better long-term solution for tooth wear. Training that includes these techniques will set you up well for the future.

On-going support

However good the training, it’s important that it doesn’t end there. GDPs need access to on-going support from mentors and experts in order to safely and effectively apply new knowledge in practice. This support is crucial for those who are new to the orthodontic field, providing a source of information and guidance while navigating initial cases. It is just as valuable for GDPs who are more advanced in orthodontics. As more complex cases are taken on and skills are developed, mentorship from experts will help ensure that complications are avoided. This also provides reassurance that GDPs are delivering the best possible care for every single patient.

A trusted provider

So, where do you go for comprehensive training that meets your needs and offers safe and effective development of your skills? IAS Academy delivers a complete learning pathway for GDPs looking to establish and advance their skills in orthodontics and restorative dentistry. Training is overseen by Specialist Orthodontist Ross Hobson and delivered by an array of highly skilled and experienced clinicians. Courses cover all relevant concepts, with different entry levels to suit all GDPs’ existing capabilities. They focus on case selection, diagnosis, assessment and treatment planning to ensure safe, ethical and effective treatment in a wide range of cases. Like thousands of GDPs around the world already have, you can trust in and benefit from the Academy’s ethos for preventive and progressive dentistry.

 

For more information on upcoming IAS Academy training courses, please visit www.iasortho.com or call 01932 336470 (Press 1)

 

[i] British Orthodontic Society. News and Events. New British Orthodontic Society survey reveals the number of adults seeking orthodontic treatment in the UK remains high. August 2019. https://www.bos.org.uk/News-and-Events/News [Accessed October 2019]

 


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