This year has been busy for the podcast, exploring new avenues and consolidating on the previous year’s successes. At the beginning of this year the podcast organisation fundamentally changed, with a team of 4 regular contributors, and 3 sponsors supporting the podcast. The support has meant I have been able to focus more on the content and use better resources to manage the podcast, with automation, editing software and subscriber list clients.
The podcast has continued in both video and audio format, with 18 episodes this year, including 5 interviews with prominent figures within orthodontics. The blog had 16 episodes has become a regular-ish posting, and covers a critical review of clinical topics, courses and papers, with a focus on clinical practice. I have particularly enjoyed the collaboration with Kerolos and James in putting the blog together, a collection of ideas and evidence (and disagreements), and have learned a lot from both in the process.
The highlight of this year was visiting Björn Ludwig in his office in Traben-Trabach, and exploring direct to print aligners with Graphy. Watching Björn explore this new technology, with his unique brand of humility and expertise, unveiled new possibilities of what may be possible in orthodontics. (Click here for review of Graphy). August this year I launched an appeal to raise charity for the devastating floods in Pakistan, a total of £2,735 was raised thanks to your help.
This year I was invited to host the online side of the Simply Ortho congress in Porto, in which the organisers were creative and adaptive, which made for a dynamic experience. A significant change from previous conference formats, with dedicated online viewing and an online host, it made for a complete online conference experience. As a consumer of online lectures and conferences I hope this trend continues of online / in person hybrid platforms.
A review textbook in orthodontics was published online by Mohammed AlMuzian, Haris Khan and Raza Ali; Planets of Orthodontics (disclosure, I was also an author). This book was primarily written as an ‘e-book’, and is freely available. Increasingly paywalls to orthodontic education are being questioned, with journals such as Progress in Orthodontics eliminating such issues though open access. It is a welcome change which allows clinicians to access resources without restrictions, and benefit from available research.
Aligners. The topic of clear aligner therapy remains the most popular in orthodontics, with the greatest number of presentations at this year’s AAO (9 in total). Patient preferences, commercial companies and limited research have popularised the appliance but also created controversy over its use. I published a guest blog on Kevin O’Brien’s blog looking at aligners and reviewed some of the evidence of current practice, my favourite quote regarding aligners to date is from Ravi Nanda “aligners are still young”, and we are yet to see what will happen.