Orthodontic Society of Ireland Spring Meeting 2014
An important part of being a specialist orthodontist is having a commitment to continuing education and developing your knowledge of orthodontics so you can keep helping your patients with the best treatment.
So orthodontists from all over Ireland have an organisation, The Orthodontic Society of Ireland (OSI) which helps them to do that. We meet twice a year and usually invite a respected orthodontic speaker from abroad to come over and lecture to us with his/her insights into high quality orthodontics. This year we welcomed Domingo Martin from Spain, and the meeting was held in the Marker Hotel in Dublin, near the Grand Canal and Bord Gais Energy Theatre.
Dr Martin is held in particularly high regard for his treatment of adult patients and complicated treatment that involves other areas of dentistry like artificial teeth and implants and gum disease and restoring worn down teeth.
He gave a fascinating series of lectures over a couple of days – this is a particularly important area as more and more adults are seeking orthodontic treatment these days, and they don’t all have their original teeth in top quality condition. Many of them have problems that are related to the positions of the teeth (which is the sort of thing that an orthodontist can diagnose and treat) that lead to problems with tooth wear and gum disease and jaw muscle pain (which would require other dental specialties to help the patient, but the orthodontist needs to work in harmony with them to get an overall treatment plan worked out).
There was a big emphasis on the difference between thorough orthodontics and short term treatments that just straighten the teeth that the patients are aware of. Also, he talked about the different facial patterns that people from different countries or different racial/ethnic backgrounds have and the effect that has on the way their teeth meet and the appropriate types of orthodontic treatment that works best for them. Again, that’s important as we see a bigger diversity of ethnic groups looking for orthodontic treatment these days and what’s right for someone from a Spanish/Mediterranean background is often different to someone from a Celtic/Nordic/Saxon background.
By coincidence, I ended up sitting beside Dr Martin for lunch and he was an interesting and entertaining speaker even when he wasn’t talking about teeth – although there was still a certain amount of chat about orthodontics around the world. (Among other things, I learnt why some people wear glasses that separate in the middle and hang around their necks on a firm plastic tube.)