Dentistry Portfolio

Sidebar CTA


10 Apr 2023

When to refer for an orthodontic assessment

When to refer for an orthodontic assessment

Post-CCST Orthodontic Registrar David Murray will be taking to the stage at this year’s British Dental Conference & Dentistry Show (BDCDS) to discuss when to refer for an orthodontic assessment.

Having worked in numerous primary and secondary care facilities across the country, David is passionate about ensuring that all those who require orthodontic treatment are able to access it at the appropriate time, and is looking forward to sharing his interests with delegates during his lecture at BDCDS. ‘General dental practitioners are the gatekeepers of orthodontic treatment and therefore have a tremendous responsibility for accurately assessing and referring their patients. Failure to refer at the appropriate time can result in patients requiring more complex orthodontic treatment. This creates an additional treatment burden for these patients, and we must consider the impact it has on patients forced to take time away from school or work. It is therefore crucial that we optimise the patient journey, and general dental practitioners have a massive role to play.’

David believes the topic of timely orthodontic referrals is somewhat overlooked in some undergraduate dentistry courses, and therefore hopes to use his speaking session to bridge the knowledge gap and provide general dental practitioners with a fail-safe guide on when to refer their patients for an orthodontic assessment. ‘Orthodontic teaching at an undergraduate level varies across the country and previous studies have shown that many general dentists lack confidence in assessing and referring orthodontic patients. This is therefore a very important topic to cover and one that I am extremely passionate about. By the end of my session, I want delegates to be comfortable assessing patients and knowing when to refer for a specialist orthodontic opinion. By optimising referrals, general dental practitioners will help to ensure a smooth transition to treatment for the patient, with less appointments required within the treatment journey.’

As well as being able to identify the optimum time to refer a patient for an orthodontic assessment, writing an effective referral letter is also key to ensuring patients receive the best and most effective orthodontic treatment. David will be taking delegates through the process of writing a referral letter to ensure that they can get it right first time. ‘I will be providing a very structured approach to writing a referral letter, ensuring that all pertinent information is included which will minimise any potential rejections at the vetting stage. I believe this lecture will be useful for all the dental team, but is likely to be of particular interest for general dental practitioners as they truly are the gatekeepers of orthodontic treatment. This lecture will also be very beneficial for dental therapists who often see many children within their practice.’

Aside from educating delegates on timely orthodontic referrals during his lecture, David is also looking forward to learning from other expert speakers and networking with delegates at the show. ‘I am really looking forward to meeting everyone in Birmingham on the 12th May. The BDCDS showcases so many fantastic speakers, and it is very difficult to choose which sessions to attend as I am hoping to hear as many talks as possible!’

This year’s British Dental Conference & Dentistry Show is taking place on the 12th and 13th May at the NEC in Birmingham. Don’t miss David Murray’s lecture on ‘When to refer for an orthodontic assessment’ on Friday 12th May at 16:30 in the Specialty Interest Theatre.

View all News