When an orthodontist graduates their residency program, they are teeming with knowledge not only about the basic foundation of orthodontics but about the latest advances currently happening in our field. For the three years of residency, daily lectures and case presentations are given to stimulate forward thinking and discussion. Points and counterpoints are brought up by residents and professors and “arguments” are driven by evidence and research. For three years following dental school, orthodontists are submerged in orthodontics in order to prepare them for treating patients in the real world.
What happens after orthodontic residency?
In the past, there were only a few meetings a year in which orthodontists could communicate and discuss new ideas. In 2017, this is not the case. Small meetings and in-office courses are now available in additional to our organization’s larger annual meetings. Small conferences are now offering a more in-depth look at specific subjects in orthodontics such as Invisalign, bracket positioning for faster treatment times, early treatment, etc. Orthodontists have more to options to choose from to better themselves benefiting their patients.
The latest concept influencing the way orthodontists communicate is using online study groups through means such as Facebook. These allow orthodontists to discuss new technologies, research, clinical findings, and troubleshoot difficult cases on the spot. This has brought back daily discussion and learning back to the private practitioner, keeping us on the forefront of what is happening in the field.
My philosophy since graduation has been that when I am done learning, I am ready to retire. Our field changes so much that one must constantly be engaged in the community. I do have to say that I am continuing education fanatic. I try to sneak in as many courses as possible without disrupting my patients’ ability to get into the office. Luckily, most courses are on the weekends or Fridays so most patients don’t even know I am out of town. Since I am die-hard believer in the importance of continuing education (CE) and a supporter of study groups, I have decided to make them a centerpiece in my blog. I hope you enjoy reading about them as much as I enjoyed learning about them.