Version 1.0 of our practice opened in 2001, and version 2.0 in 2007.
In June this year, our practice will have been open for 20 years. We were the first orthodontic practice to open in Birmingham with digital technology throughout. Since that time, we have introduced retainers made in half an hour and were the first practice in Birmingham to offer Lingual Orthodontics. We have never become driven or controlled by any particular appliance. We feel that the treatment we offer should be focused on you rather than trying to make a product fit your situation.
Planning for version 3.0
For the last 2 years we have been planning a refurbishment. Under normal circumstances, this can be difficult in a listed building. The Covid crisis has made this a lot more difficult, but we are nearly ready to get started with the works. The two buildings are separate, but one big change will be that we will be creating some doorways to connect the two buildings. This will mean that we can have a central sterilisation area. This will give us more space in two of the treatment rooms. Our treatment rooms and reception areas will also have a makeover.
Some of you may have noticed that two years ago, at the start of this planning, we introduced a 3d scanner. This has massively reduced the number of impressions that we take. This makes treatments more comfortable. We have also invested in a 3d Printer, which means that we can do a lot of new things which will be introduced once the laboratory area has been fitted out.
We have been testing the idea that retainers can be made before braces are removed. In the future we are interested in introducing 3d metal printing. We are already using some appliances that have been printed in this way. Printing in metal helps us to create appliances with comfort in mind. There is also more flexibility in design, which can improve the comfort and mechanics of treatment.
The materials are not quite there yet but we are hoping that aligners and retainers will change. When we can print retainers direct, we will be able to scan and print retainers in about half an hour or possibly less time. This has the potential to be so much more convenient for patients and staff.
While the changes are going on, there may be some disruption, so please bear with us. We are working with Tim Richardson as architect who understands our needs. He will be working with companies that are used to carrying out works, while a practice like ours continues to function. We hope that this will keep any disruption to a minimum.
Rob and Dev are keen to keep pushing the boundaries forward in a way that suits the patient. Technology should not be for technology’s sake. Version 3.0 of One Devonshire Place is about to be downloaded and we are all very excited to get this project completed.