Hello from the skies over Washington state. I'm on my way back home from the annual meeting of the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD) in Vancouver, British Columbia. As always, the AACD gathering was tremendous. It has quickly become one of my favorite meetings of the year. It's always well-attended and provides great opportunities for dentists and their staff members. I'm always impressed by meetings where the exhibit hall is virtually empty during lecture times, and the AACD is one of the few meetings that fall into this category. Having the exhibit hall empty at times may not be the best news in the eyes of the exhibitors, but it's proof that those attending the meeting are actually attending the lectures and learning. And, trust me, when it's break time or meal time, the exhibit hall is flooded with attendees.
Another of the reasons why the AACD meeting has become one of my favorites to attend is the fact that it is focused on helping dental teams succeed in cosmetic dentistry. If you've been hiding underground for the last few years or haven't noticed, cosmetic dentistry is booming. As was discussed in Vancouver, part of that is due to the Baby Boomers getting older, part of it is due to the public's infatuation with looking young, and part of it is due to the success of shows like "Extreme Makeover." Whatever the reason, if your practice has been concentrating on "drilling and filling" rather than services such as whitening or veneers, you're missing a great opportunity to grow your practice.
I had the opportunity to sit down with Dr. Bill Dorfman, who has become a television star with "Extreme Makeover," and Dr. Mike Malone, the current president of the AACD, for a few minutes during the meeting in Vancouver. They both impressed upon me that the demand for cosmetic dentistry isn't slowing down. It will only grow over the next few years. Granted, whitening may be the most well-known and easiest-to-do of the cosmetic services, but Dr. Malone was quick to point out that he believes bonding is the "next great" cosmetic service that can be offered by dentists. Keeping in step with that, you'll see an article written by an AACD member on bonding in the next issue (coming out in mid-September) of Dental Equipment & Materials.
In this issue, you'll find an article by Dr. Greg Heintschel of Findlay, Ohio, on whitening (see page 44). You'll also find our cover story (see page 70) deals with Dr. Heintschel and his staff, who have built a renowned cosmetic dental practice in this small Ohio town. Dr. Heintschel (who is on the AACD Board of Directors) and Dr. Malone (who practices outside of Lafayette, La.) are proof that you don't have to practice in Chicago, Los Angeles, or New York to have a great cosmetic practice. In today's society, you can't use location as an excuse for not growing your practice through cosmetic dentistry. I encourage you to read Dr. Heintschel's story and see how he made his Ohio practice a destination for not only those patients from the Buckeye State, but also from around the region and nation.
This issue also contains our first-ever focus section on detection and diagnosis (beginning on page 78). Dr. Steven Steinberg and Trisha O'Hehir are two of the foremost authorities on the topic, and I'm thankful to both of them for their contributions to this month's magazine. With products such as KaVo America's DIAGNOdent, Ultradent's DetecTar, and DIFOTI, dental professionals now have the ability to tackle caries and periodontal disease with an amazing arsenal of weapons. I encourage you to read these articles and see how your practice can become more proactive in the fight against dental diseases.
I hope you enjoy this issue of Dental Equipment & Materials. If you enjoyed this issue, or know of a topic you would like to see addressed in a future issue of DE&M, please feel free to send me an e-mail at [email protected]. As I always say, this is your magazine, so drop me a line any time.
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Kevin Henry, Editor