By Dr. John White
Smiles by White
As English singer-songwriter Phil Collins once so eloquently wrote, “In learning you will teach, and in teaching you will learn.”
For those of us who are more right-brained and tend to be more artistic like musicians, we actually learn better when we are teaching others.
Currently, I lecture at Invisalign conferences around the country to teach other orthodontists and dentists more efficient and effective techniques, and, locally, I am an associate professor at Case Western Reserve University and teach post-graduate dental residents to straightening teeth with Invisalign.
In the process of teaching something to someone, you learn yourself. In order to explain things to someone else, you have to first clarify your own understanding.
For me this especially holds true, as teaching forces me to look at things differently. I tend to think right-brained and see what I need to do and know how to make it happen, but when I have to break it down to lectures for others I have to shift to my left brain and put it into steps. By conceptualizing it and then having to verbalize it to others, it helps me reprocess everything, and, oftentimes, I learn more from my lectures than my residents do.
Not only have the 140 orthodontists I have trained over the past three decades benefited from my instruction, but every day my patients are rewarded by my continued pursuit of the latest technology and techniques.
I believe orthodontics is in the middle of a significant evolution as Invisalign is growing in popularity, and, by teaching others, I want to make sure as many people as possible can benefit from orthodontic care.