This year’s ADI Team Congress went above and beyond in refreshing and updating dental hygienists’ and therapists’ knowledge within the field of dental implants.

Karen Walker, ADI past DCP representative, welcomed delegates to the event and highlighted the aim of the ADI to encourage a team approach for the advancement of dental implants as a whole.

‘I am delighted with how successful the team programme was at this year’s Congress,’ Karen said. ‘Aside from meeting the CPD objectives, I really wanted to deliver a programme that would inspire delegates and help them enhance their everyday practice.’

Evidence base

Kicking off the day’s lectures was Nik Pandya, showing the humorous side of research interpretation with various short video clips highlighting just how many studies are performed today and how conflicting (and somewhat ridiculous) they can be.

Nik made clear that research is necessary for the advancement of the profession, but also that it is important to bridge the gap between the ‘ivory tower’ of researchers and the coalface.

He presented the five steps of evidence-based dentistry:

  1. Question
  2. Evidence
  3. Critical appraisal
  4. Application
  5. Monitoring.

He encouraged everyone to use these to establish the quality of a paper and the validity of the results.

Nik also warned of the dangers of simply reading the abstract and advised professionals to focus first on the method and results of an article, later comparing their own conclusions to those of the author.

Further support

Julia Wilson’s session on implant protocols followed on nicely, acknowledging and addressing the new phenomenon that is ‘the dental implant maintenance patient’.

Julia shared her own experiences and offered a wealth of advice designed to help professionals implement the right processes to ensure a high standard of care for all implant patients.

She also alluded to the ADI helpful protocols in assessment, treatment and monitoring, offering further support for all hygienists and therapists.

In the afternoon, delegates had the chance to learn more about the latest innovations on the market. As many hygienists and therapists rarely get time to meet with trade representatives in practice, this session provided an opportunity to hear four industry representatives discuss their products and technologies.

Delegates were able to question the experts on all aspects of the innovations, while also getting hands-on and trying the products for themselves to get a feel for their benefits and applications in practice.

For those who wished to learn more, or who were inspired to see what else is available, the trade floor was the perfect extension to this session. Numerous dental implant product suppliers were on hand to demonstrate their own solutions and provide any information or advice delegates required.

Team approach

To close the day’s proceedings, dental hygienists and therapists were joined by dental nurses and practice managers to gain more insight into the management of peri-implant diseases.

While discussing the clinical signs and implications of peri-implant mucosa and peri-implantitis, as well as some of the science behind implant surface materials, David Holmes highlighted the need for a team approach.

He demonstrated that the patient journey was affected by every member of the dental team, from receptionist to practice manager, dental nurse, hygienist and therapist, encouraging all to develop their knowledge and confidence in the field in order to work together for the benefit of their patients.

Karen concluded: ‘The feedback from delegates has been amazing – the speakers were really well received and delegates seemed very happy with the topics chosen and the way they were presented. I was truly honoured when one of the delegates stood up at the end of the day to thank us for such a great programme!’

Party time

No ADI Team Congress would be complete without the chance to network and have fun. The highlight of the social programme was the highly-anticipated congress dinner on Friday night, where practice teams, friends and colleagues came together at the National Maritime Museum to enjoy a fantastic evening.

Amongst great company, delicious cuisine and fun entertainment, attendees had every excuse to let their hair down and party the night away!

If this year was anything to go by, the ADI Team Congress is an event not to miss for any professional involved in implant dentistry.

For information on the ADI and upcoming events, visit www.adi.org.uk.