Joe Blaes, DDS, Editor
I am in a plane (my second home) returning from San Diego and the highly successful First Annual Dental Economics Cosmetic Dentistry Seminar (February 5 & 6). I still am basking in the afterglow that comes when everything has gone right and you have had a great outcome. It`s like when you did your first anterior veneer case and the patient looked in the mirror and could not believe the result. You changed that person`s life forever! Some life-changing events definitely took place in San Diego that weekend.
I know that many of you were sitting back to see if Dental Economics could pull off this seminar. After all, what does a practice-management magazine know about clinical dentistry? We started late. The first ads appeared in the October issue of DE. But late start or not, many of you came from all over the country and, from the very beginning, there was an electricity in the air. This was not a group of dentists and staff looking solely for continuing-education points; this was a group of people dedicated to changing their practices and their lives. This was a group of dentists looking for the solution to managed care. Many times, during the weekend, this question was asked: "How can I increase my fee-for-service dentistry?" Our dedicated group of speakers answered this question many times in many different ways.
The structure of the meeting provided ample time for networking with fellow dentists and staff. A great group of exhibitors provided a chance to get answers about materials, equipment, and techniques. The structure of the meeting allowed the industry people a chance to attend many of the sessions right along with the dentists. They heard the message and then were able to help the dentists attending even more. By the end of the seminar, it was clear that many dentists had made a decision to re-create their practices with the emphasis on providing quality dentistry for their patients in a fee-for-service setting. This only can be a win/win/
The dentist obviously wins because the practice changes and becomes more challenging and more fun with less outside interference. Patients win because they begin to build relationships in this new practice; they become more educated and are offered quality options. The industry wins because production goes up and more materials and equipment are bought. No wonder everyone was so excited at our meeting!
A highly dedicated group of very nervous people arrived in San Diego two days before the seminar started. We were nervous because this was new territory for all of us. We had never run a show like this before, but we knew it was going to be the best we could possibly make it. Luckily, our parent company, PennWell, sent a highly qualified show coordinator, Joan Biggs, to help us out. We quickly became a "can do" team that got the job done, whatever it was! The end result was a terrific experience for everyone who attended.
We look forward to the challenge of providing an even better Cosmetic Dentistry experience for you next year. We have the comments (the good and the bad) from everyone who attended this year. We are putting together next year`s program right now, and I can tell you that it will be an exciting one. Our speakers will once again represent the best of the best. Look for the announcement of Cosmetic Dentistry 2000 in the April issue of Dental Economics!
I usually do not mention "Pearls" in this column, but something unusual has happened. I don`t want one of my favorite materials to get lost in the shuffle. The Dental Button (the thermoplastic material I use to make my temporary matrix) can be ordered by calling Advantage Dental Products at (800) 388-6319. Advantage also makes my favorite bite-impression tray, the Occlusal Harmony Tray. If you haven`t tried these products, give them a call and order now. I don`t know how I would practice without them!