Hello, Protruserati! Welcome to the first ever ‘Occlusal Adjustment’ episode! This is an opportunity for me to go a little bit deeper, have a little rant sometimes, or go off on different tangents based on a recent episode.
This episode is Audio only – sorry YouTube family!
In this very first Occlusal Adjustment I will be talking about how to plan your CPD, inspired by the recent episode with Dr Emma Courtney.
“Knowledge is good. Knowledge is power…but implementation is king.” Dr Jaz Gulati
In This episode I talked all about:
- ‘Just in time learning’ 1:19
- When is the right time to go on a course? 4:45
- Importance of Shadowing 11:00
- How to choose your next Course 11:55
- Loss Of Earnings (LOE) 12:51
- Importance of considering courses abroad 15:46
If you want to learn more about wisdom tooth extraction, be sure to check Dr Nekky Jamal’s THE ULTIMATE THIRD MOLAR EXTRACTION COURSE and get a 15% OFF with the code ‘protrusive’
If you’ve been dying to learn more about Bruxism and TMD and want to help your patients that parafunction then be sure to check SPLINTCOURSE – Registration for 2021 ends on 24th November.
Click below for full episode transcript:Opening Snippet: In this very first Occlusal Adjustment, I'll be talking about how to plan your CPD. My opinions on which is the next course that you should do...
Main Episode: In this very first Occlusal Adjustment, I’ll be talking about how to plan your CPD. My opinions on which is the next course that you should do. Hello, Protruserati, I’m Jaz Gulati and welcome back to another episode this one is an Occlusal Adjustment. So basically the whole point of an Occlusal Adjustment is sometimes I have these amazing guests on and I am just captivated by their story. And when they’re speaking and I’m listening, you’ve probably seen it for those of you that catch me on the video episodes is that I’ve got these facial expressions like I’m in deep thought. And my brain is like absolutely bouncing with so many activities and thoughts. And sometimes I want to ask certain questions or take in a different direction, but then we end up going on a tangent. So what an Occlusal Adjustment is about is an episode where I get to go a little bit deeper and give you my perspectives and my opinions. And that’s all it is really. It is very much my opinion. So everything I say on anything that I say on my podcast ever, always take it with a pinch of salt, okay? There’s just me and my opinions and my paradigms, which I’m very happy to share with you. But always remember the philosophy of listen to everyone and do what feels right to you. So this is an Occlusal Adjustment for the planning your CPD and burnout episode I did with Emma Courtney, it was just so great to hear her story and how she fought burnout and now she’s come back with a vengeance. She’s so passionate and purposeful, everything she does, and she’s doing a great podcast, herself. Fang farrier should definitely check that one out.
Now, what I want to tell you about is my favorite type of learning as a dentist, my favorite way of getting my CPD hours in and something I like to call just in time learning. Okay? So very much the opposite of just in time learning is that, for example, many years ago, I didn’t know anything about Crown Lengthening surgery. And so one day I say to myself, Okay, I don’t know anything about Crown Lengthening surgery, so therefore, I’m going to open up a textbook, or I’m going to go on a course on Crown Lengthening surgery, okay? That’s a very erratic way of learning. And that’s a very random way of learning because you can look at your entire knowledge base and skill base and history base. And you can pick out easily lots of areas within dentistry, which you think you have limited knowledge in. The problem is if you willy nilly just go about learning in any direction, without having a goal at the end, then you end up going down these all these different learning pathways, but none of them ever get implemented, or certainly it takes a long time for you to implement your learning. And that’s the problem. Knowledge is good. Knowledge is power. But implementation is key. So when I started to learn about Crown Lengthening surgery, I exposed myself to what is the meaning of high crest, meaning of low crest, the rule of three millimeters, that’s like the distance between the bone and the future gingival margin is a rule of three millimeters. So it’s learning about all these things and whatnot, when to do an excisional cut, when to do an apical reposition that kind of stuff, right? So when I then many, many, many months later, maybe in a year later, I was actually considering doing Crown Lengthening, guess what I had to do? I had to go on another course because I forgot everything A to Z, everything I read, everything I watched, it all went to waste. All that practice I did on a pig’s head or something, it didn’t matter anymore, because it was so long ago that I did that course, that I needed a refresher. So the lesson here is be a just in time learner. When you have something procedural like Crown Lengthening surgery, for example, make sure you have a few cases ready. Or maybe you are working in a practice where Facial Esthetics is a huge demand for it. And I have zero interest in facial aesthetics, you know that because know what my face looks like. And, you know, damn, well, I have zero interest in that. But if you’re in a practice, where the demand for facial aesthetics is there, and your patients are asking for it, man, that is a great time. And of course, you have an interest in it, that’s a great opportunity for you to then go on a Facial Esthetics course, and implement that for your patients. Whereas if you just fancy the idea of learning about Facial Esthetics, but you don’t have the patient base, and you don’t have any cases lined up, that’s when learning gets wasted. It’s really sad when learning opportunity gets wasted. Same with implants. I know so many colleagues, it’s a real shame. I know so many colleagues who went on expensive implant courses, and they never got to implement it. And that is a crying shame. So don’t be that dentist. So implants another example. Right? Try and get a mentor, try and get a few cases, simple cases under your belt that are ready for you to implement your newfound knowledge on or maybe you have a patient that you’ve been seeing for a while that’s got some tooth wear, and you’ve diagnosed tooth wear, and you’ve given the usual you know, diet advice, reduce acid, screen for bruxism, the usual kind of stuff, and you don’t quite know how to treat it. But the patient’s expressed that you know what I’d like to do something about this, whether they are concerned about further breakdown, and maybe you are as well, or it’s an aesthetic concern. Now you don’t know how to treat it yet. But what you need to do at that point is recognize that okay, now I can go on a course and learn something and implement it on this patient. And what you won’t do is find the best person to learn that skill from.
Now someone I was speaking to a recently Prav Solanki, really cool guy. He’s one of the co-hosts of a dental leaders podcast. He taught me that one of the people who taught me is that don’t think how, think who. So don’t think how I’m going to treat this tooth wear. Think who is going to teach me how to treat this tooth wear or who is the best person to have this done with but there is a problem with this that if you’re waiting around, waiting around there is a little bit of problem with this and this was exposed by my good buddy. Aneesh Dhunna, he messaged me on Instagram Hey Aneesh, hope you doing well, buddy. Thank you for being a Protruserati for such a long time. You’re one of the OGs for sure. Now, he said and he asked very badly, very good point he asked if you only book your courses after you found the right case, how can you time it so that patient is not waiting for such a long time? For example, let’s go back to that crown lengthening analogy. Okay? So you want to go into Crown Lengthening course. But you don’t have the patient yet. But then a patient turns up, and you’ve had that conversation with a patient, patient’s interested but then the next crown lending course, in your town is four months away. And now the patient’s waiting. So my advice, so it’s a great concern, you have that, Aneesh. Now, a few angles to consider here, a few things to consider. It actually reminds me of a poster I saw. It’s like an advertisement for a Spear Education. So shout out to Spear Education, great educators in Spear, I’ve consumed lot that online stuff over the years, learn a lot from them. There was a huge poster they had, like an online ad. And it was someone with a really worn dentition and is crying out for some comprehensive care, and really a full mouth rehabilitation. And the slogan or the marketing pool on that poster was ‘When he’s ready for treatment, will you be?’ When the patient is ready for treatment? Will you the dentist be ready to treat this patient, right? So that was a really cool ad, because it ties in very nicely what Aneesh is done like sometimes the it doesn’t work out this way, you know, patients aren’t perfect in the way that they’ll just turn up. And you can say, okay, yes, now I can go on this course and implement it. Obviously, that’s too idealistic. So sometimes the other flip side is that you have to prime yourself with knowledge to be able to diagnose and recognize and understand. And then when the patient is ready, then hopefully you’ll be ready at that point as well. Now, if you think about the bigger picture kind of stuff, when it comes to occlusion and tooth wear, like there’s a 93% chance that if you’re listening to this right now you are a general dentist, right? So because in the UK, only 7% of dentists are specialist. So I think it’s probably more in the US. But anyway, so chances are you are a general dentist, listen to this. And you know that amongst many different disciplines in dentistry, occlusion is an absolute fundamental key, okay? You don’t wait around for an occlusion case to go on an occlusion course. Okay? This is really bigger picture fundamental back to basis. Occlusion is something that you apply every day. So the lesson here is when it comes to the really fundamentals, right? For example, for GDP, get to a decent level when it comes to endodontics. And definitely get to a certain level when it comes to occlusion. Because occlusion is something that you will apply on a daily basis, whether it’s an occlusal examination, a single crown composite bonding, you will use the principles of occlusion. So sometimes when it comes to your education, and you figure out broad areas in your education, which you think is lacking from dental school, then for sure, don’t wait around for a case to apply for that kind of course, because that is a universal thing that you should be learning. So when it comes to bigger picture stuff, especially your first five years, you know, go on a Perio course, go on an Endo course, go on an extraction course. And this big one, right? We as general dentists need to be really good at extractions and pain management. I think I believe that all dentists should very fundamentally be able to get someone out of pain. So it’s really sad that some people go on implant courses, and they don’t know how to raise a flap, they don’t know how to Section and elevate a tooth, which I think is a fundamental skill. And once I learned that I was so, I was way more confident with my extractions. And you know about this already, from the episode I did with Chris Waith, you totally should listen to how to Section and elevate teeth, how to become more confident in extractions. Go back and listen to the episode if you haven’t already. So once again, you don’t wait around for the extraction case to improve your oral surgery skill. So some things are just fundamental. Now when it comes to a specific procedure, now again, going back to crown lengthening surgery, that’s quite a specific niche procedure. I think for that kind of procedure, unless you have a real desire or a hunger to learn for it, then I think it’s probably a sensible thing to do to get a bit more experience under your belt and find the case and the way you can pitch it to the patient is once you find a patient and you know what you need to be able to diagnose, right? You need to know which kind of patient would be suitable for Crown Lengthening, what the indications are, what the contraindications are, generally what the procedure involves because you don’t want to like A) miss the diagnosis. So someone who’s got a gummy smile and you don’t know that Crown Lengthening surgery could be able to help them ie a gum lift. So you need to recognize it. You need to be able to communicate with the patient. And you should be able to give the patient a good amount of information to consider that kind of treatment modality. So this kind of very fundamental information I think you can get from a webinar, you can get from a book, you can get from a paper, you can get from a chat over the phone with a periodontist for example, right? So this isn’t something you need to go into Crown Lengthening course for. The Crown Lengthening course is to teach you the how. And remember when you think how you, think who. Who’s gonna teach me this. Anyway, so you find that crown lengthening case because now you know how to diagnose because you’ve done your reading. You’ve been on your webinars, and so you can now say to the patient, Okay, this is the issue you have, you have a gummy smile, you could get this treated for x y z benefit. And actually, funnily enough, I’m looking to learn this technique is called a gum lift. Would you like me to email you, once I have done this course? And as one of my first few patients, I’ll make sure you get special treatment. But if you’re in a rush, I can refer you to Doctor Periodontist down the road. And you know what, guys, the patients who you’ve got good rapport and trust with, they will wait for you. They don’t mind waiting three, six months, okay? Sometimes they just need that amount of time to save up the money for that kind of procedure. So it’s good to give them like a ballpark figure, email them, keep in touch with them, send them photos. So with something like that, if you haven’t got the skills yet, but you want to, you gauge the interest with the patient. And you say, You know what, I’m interested in learning this technique, do you wnat me to email you when I’ve gone on my course, which is in some months away, and the patient might say, Yeah, sure. And if they’re in a rush, then you can always offer them a referral as well. So I think that’s a pretty good way that you can adapt certain procedures to make sure it falls under the umbrella of just in time learning.
But of course, you know, life doesn’t work like this, patients don’t fall in this perfect, beautiful category. So if you really liked the idea of learning how to do Crown Lengthening surgery, and you don’t have a case yet, then the next best thing you could do is arrange to shadow a periodontist, or a dentist who does some Crown Lengthening, straight after the course. So you know, within a few weeks after the course, arrange a shadow. So now even if you’re not implementing yourself, you’re seeing the implementation in the real world in daily practice, okay, and you’re seeing it under daily stresses, and you’re not on a pig’s head, you’re actually seeing it being done on a person, and you can actually assist for that dentist. And I think you’ll gain so much more, especially having been on that course, your knowledge is really good. And now you gain a few levels up, you gain a few notches in terms of implementation, even though it’s not you doing it, you’re watching someone. I think that’s another good alternative way to do it. So Aneesh, I hope that helps. I hope that answers your question.
Now, just two last points on this topic in terms of how to choose the next course. There’s one of the very common questions I get on social media, Jaz, Which course should I do? Which course would you recommend? Okay? So hopefully, you’ve sussed out that the answer is I can’t recommend a course. It really depends on you as a learner, what is your learning style? What is it, what is your demographic of patients? Have you got lots of elderly patients and your dentures suck maybe and you need to do more dentures? And you know what, go in a denture course, right? How can you serve your population base? How can you serve your future niche? Like maybe you’ve decided Okay, I want to niche in this. So you want to take your career in a certain direction and that’s important to consider, this bigger picture stuff is so important. And of course, if you’re in the first five years after dental school, then all of the bigger picture you know, occlusion, perio endo in general, the core fundamentals of dentistry you can’t go wrong. Just please, please, please seek mentorship and look to apply everything you learn ASAP to gain the most from it.
Final two points. One is Be mindful of the famous three letters L-O-E, okay? LOE is loss of earnings. Okay? Time is precious. Time is money. Okay? So remember, knowledge is fine. But implementation is when you really get your money’s worth. So if you’re booking one, two webinars for the sake of it, and you’re like me, like anytime I see a flyer or some advertisement for a course I automatically want to do it because I’m just always so hungry for knowledge. Sometimes just have to step back and think, Okay, is this going to serve me now? Is this going to serve my patients? And how will I be able to implement it. And when it comes to going on multiple courses, even if it’s for like an hour webinar, you’re still giving up an hour away from your family, away from your children, away from your loved ones to go on that webinar, for example. So be always mindful of loss of earnings, loss of time, and pick and choose wisely.
I’m also a big fan of online courses. Because with online, we don’t have to book a day off, necessarily. You can, you know, do it in your lunch break. You can do it in between patients. Sometimes you can do it your fellow time. You can do it in the evenings when your kids are asleep. So I’m a huge fan of online courses an example I’ve been doing a Nekky Jamal’s wisdom tooth, third molar Experience course. So if you’ve got something like basic surgical skills, these clinical videos of like, for example, seeing lots and lots and lots of horizontal wisdom teeth extracted, lots and lots of distal angular wisdom teeth extracted, you can level up your basic surgical skills through online course learnings. And by the way, if you want to do that course, Nekky’s very kindly giving you a discount. So go back a few episodes. To learn all about third molars. You’ll love Nikki’s tips, I believe the coupon code is ‘protrusive ‘usually is, it’s 15% off and that’s a third molar experience, which I’d implemented so much. So my background is I’ve never actually been on a formal hands on third molar course, I’ve just had some basic surgical skills in hospital and using that course, which I was really angry when I found this course because Nekky where you all these years ago when I needed you in Singapore? But anyway, really enjoying that course and on 24th of November if you haven’t enrolled to splint course yet, and you’ve been dying to learn more about TMD and your patients are a bruxing and you want to learn about occlusal appliances then 24th of November is my last day for intake for 2021. So if you’d like to join us, it’s 12 plus hours of content just a few hours ago, and I’m recording this on the 19th of November, just three hours ago I had some feedback from Kjartan. Kjartan is in Scandinavia and he had this say about my course. Kjartan thanks so much of finishing the course. So Kjartan said absolutely fabulous course. And this gonna make me blush guys. He said, Jaz, you are the peak of dental teachers. Wow, that meant so much to me. So I’m so glad you gained value from that Kjartan. So if guys if you want someone to teach you everything about occlusal appliances in general practice, the mainstream ones from anterior only appliances to full arches, B Splints, Michigans, Tanners, etc, how to do a proper soft bite guard, join us on splintcourse.com just a few days left for that. So 24th And remember once again is the last day.
And the final thing I want to tell you about is the importance of considering going abroad. Now that COVID restrictions are lifting a little bit. I think it’s such a great thing to do to go abroad, gain a different perspective, learn from a different country, go get a tan, go get sunkissed, okay? Go to Dubai like I’ve been. I’ve been to India. I’ve been to Sweden. I’ve been to Australia on tax deductible flights and accommodation within reason obviously discuss with your accountant don’t get in trouble. But there’s so much you can do outside of your country that you’re in. And it’s an excuse to see the world, experience different cultures. So go abroad, take your family with you, you know, every time I go on a course I always think, Can I take Sim and Ishaan with me. And we booked flights together and yes, we might go for like four or five days and maybe one or two of those days I might be on a course during the day. But I still get to enjoy quality time with my family and I get some you know, tax benefits with the flight and the course and etc, etc. So it’s a great way to see the world. So do consider it. If you’re always just going on courses in your own country, consider going abroad you will not regret it at all.
So yeah, that is the first ever occlusal adjustment. I hope you found that useful guys. And if you did, can you do me a favor? If you’re listening on Apple, can you give me a rating and some feedback? I’d really appreciate that because I’d like to read what you think of these occlusal adjustments and the podcasts in general of course. And as always, I really appreciate you listening all the way to the end. Hope you enjoy that. And I’ll catch you in the next one. Thank you.