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Last weekend, I had the opportunity to attend an orthodontic conference held in Dallas. I learned a lot, especially about how to manage my practice. I also learned about some of the newest orthodontic research. For instance, studies have confirmed that expanders, something that many people with braces wear, do help open a patient’s airways, helping them breathe better.
The conference had sessions with great speakers and lots of vendors. My favorite part, though, is that I got to spend time with so many colleagues and mentors. I saw old classmates and professors from school. They flew in Thursday and stayed through Sunday night. We spent our free time reconnecting and talking shop. Many of them were from the LA or New York, and they had some misconceptions about Texas that I had to fix.
I introduced them to great Tex-Mex food, and it was a huge hit. We also went to some downtown bars like the Happiest Hour. We visited TopGolf, which was founded in Dallas. The fancy driving range with targets and table service wasn’t what they expected. By the end of the weekend, they no longer thought of Texas as all cowboys and tumbleweeds.
The weekend was busy and informative. The best part was definitely the sense of comradery that I felt among my colleagues. We were able to compare notes, to share struggles that are common in our profession, and to provide sympathy and solutions. There’s something very comforting about talking to people who know what you’re going through and can offer real suggestions to fix problems. I’m glad that I had that opportunity!