All I want is one perfect course.
One that will teach me everything about the subject. It will teach me the total knowledge on the topic. It will teach me all different viewpoints. It will teach me thirty years of experiences, successes and failures. I will know all the tiny details that instinctively come with thousands of repetitions.
And a unicorn. One of those too.
The unicorn is probably easier to obtain.
The course I described is a nonsense of course. Yet so often we see the question;
Which ortho course should I do?
Which soft tissue course should I do?
Which implant course should I do?
etc etc etc.
(Disclaimer, I teach or help teach courses in soft tissue and implants...and restorative dentistry, treatment planning and a few other bits).
The implication in the question is that if you do the wrong course, your life will be doomed.
Let us take the explosion in soft tissue courses. Many people say they are trained by Zuchelli. Or Zuhr. Or Pat Allen.
It is like they are on a football team and this is their side. They will blindly follow their team no matter how well or poorly they do. However in reality, no single procedure, nor approach works for every patient and more important than the actual procedure chosen, is always the basic surgical skill with which is it carried out.
Let me offer an alternative way of looking at courses.
If you choose to go down the path of any procedure, consider it the beginning of a life time of learning.
You cannot learn everything before you start. Even if you were taught it, you will not be able to learn but a fraction, because there are certain things we cannot learn unless we have done a procedure. Certain parts of the procedure we cannot even see until we have tried.
You cannot learn different viewpoints unless you learn from different teachers.
You cannot learn thirty years experience in....well....much less than thirty years. 🙂
Successes will inspire, but failures will teach and reduce your overconfidence, hubris, and increase your caution.
Tiny instinctive details will not come without thousands of repetitions.
My initial soft tissue surgical skills I learnt from observing thousands of Danny Melker surgeries and videos. I then learnt more complex techniques hands on with Matthias Peuten, and Plastic and OMFS from Karlsruhre. And then hands on course with Edward P Allen in Dallas.
Last year I learnt from the incomparable Radoslaw.
My wishlist of further soft tissue courses include Zuhr, Zuchelli, Gluckman andDelia Tuttle.
There is one particular soft tissue procedure that I'm a bit torn about as it looks attractive, but the person who teaches it likes suing a lot of other people, so I might give it a miss.
So do a course. And then get started. The more repetitions you get under your belt, the sooner you will achieve competence.
And then do another course.
If you are not dedicated to a life time of learning, don't dabble in the procedure. Refer it out.
Dr Lincoln Harris has been completely focused on excellence and quality from the beginning of his career as a dentist. He established the first private dental practice in Bargara – Harris Dental Boutique in 2000. Since graduation he has trained extensively in Aesthetic Implant Techniques and Full Mouth Rehabilitation to attain immense skill and knowledge. With his vast dental knowledge Dr Harris coaches and trains dentists from all over the world on complex aesthetic dentistry, surgical techniques and business management. Dr Harris is the founder of RIPE. Restorative Implant Practice Excellence: Full Protocol group an international forum of over 70,000 members worldwide. The purpose of the group is to share information and excellence in the dental industry. He has also lectured in multiple cities throughout Australia, North America, Asia, Singapore, United Kingdom and Europe.