Do others in your practice community embrace Early Treatment?
How do you perceive Pediatric Dentistry’s attitude toward Early Treatment?
How has membership in the AOS been helpful to you?
What sparked your interest in Early Treatment?
Which educators have influenced you?
And, like the other specialty areas -- pediatric dentistry, endodontics, periodontics, oral surgery -- orthodontics is one area in the purview of the generalists, the GP and the pediatric dentist.
The American Orthodontic Society and other organizations have dedicated themselves to providing the same kind of education for the generalist that can be obtained in an orthodontics specialty residency, complete with ongoing continuing educational opportunities to continue to grow and develop mastery in the area.
Pediatric Dentistry residencies are fascinating stand-outs in the specialty areas of dentistry because the pediatric dentist is a generalist, a gate-keeper. The Pediatric Dentist provides comprehensive care to the child patient, just as the General Practitioner does to his patients.
The generalist is licensed to and should provide care in any and all areas of his education and his competence, including preventive and restorative care as well as endodontic, periodontic, surgical, and orthodontic care. Yet the Pediatric Dentist is often reluctant to provide “other-” specialty care, after his experience in his own “specialty” residency.
Somehow the dentist who completes the Pediatric Dental residency often comes to believe that they should provide, and should be comfortable in providing preventive and restorative care, the hallmarks of their residency training, and refer other specialty care.
We have seen the GP dentist who finds himself in a community where his patients need specialty care, often without adequate specialists available, be the lead in educating himself in such specialty care. The GP’s have been our knights in shining armor. The GP’s have looked for - and found - the educational opportunities they need, and brought the resulting competencies to their patients.
The Pediatric specialty community is an amazing resource for the child patients, their parents, and the GP’s, and I am proud of my specialty as its members broaden their interest and involvement in the area of orthodontic and craniofacial orthopedic treatment, bringing in their extraordinary working knowledge of growth and development, child patient management and their successes in transforming lives of these patients.
While at UConn, I learned from Dr Charlie Burstone, Dr Lou Norton, Dr Ravi Nanda. I was still fascinated - and fortunate. Dr Lenny Carapezza was an invited speaker on several occasions, and shared his passion for orthodontics in the practice of pediatric dentistry.
Dr Walter Doyle was the world’s first dual specialist in Pediatric Dentistry (then Pedodontics - Indiana University) and Orthodontics (Boston University), boarded by examination in both specialities. I had the magnificent fortune to join Dr Doyle in his practice.
Educationally, I could not be more privileged. And that is why I am passionate about teaching interested pediatric dentists and GP’s what I have been so fortunate to learn and practice.
We dentists are a funny bunch. The dentists in one’s community often are insulated and unaware - perhaps wary - of their geographically close colleagues. Yet, as we extend out into the world - for me, all over the United States, and to Dubai, UAE and Greece, we find colleagues hungry to learn and practice at a new transformative level. What a privilege and honor it is to share with our colleagues!