Against the Odds 2021 open for entries: Deadline 28th February
“The pandemic has allowed a little time to perhaps reflect on what’s important to us. People with healthy self-esteem make positive connections with others and have the confidence to follow their ambitions. If orthodontics can make even a small contribution in this way, then that’s a really positive thing to be a part of.” Joe Dwyer, winner of Against the Odds 2020.
The British Orthodontic Society’s Against The Odds award is now open for entries. The award is open to children and adults. The most recent winner was 19-year-old Lewis Bulman from Merseyside. Lewis was extremely anxious about dental treatment. He now has a beautiful smile and has grown in confidence enabling him to deal with awkward situations with a calmness which has developed over the course of his dental journey.
His orthodontist, Joe Dwyer, talked to The British Orthodontic Society about the impact of Against The Odds:
What does it mean to you winning ATO?
There are numerous dental award ceremonies each year. Most seem to function as part of a personal and practice marketing strategy whilst boosting the winner’s professional self-esteem. Against The Odds is different. It’s not really an award for me as a person or clinician, it’s about the story behind the treatment and how patients, the clinical team and families can work together to bring about life changing results. Rather than internal professional recognition, the award is special because it promotes orthodontics in a way that is accessible to the public.
What’s the impact on your practice?
Everyone was pleased that Lewis won and it’s a nice reminder of why we do what we do and the positive impact orthodontics has on patients’ lives.
Why do you think it’s important to celebrate the life-changing impact of orthodontics?
As clinicians we can get quite caught up in the technical aspect of the job. I just can’t get enough of learning about the practical aspects of the subject and consider myself a fully-fledged orthodontic “nerd”. However, although superficially we are treating teeth, in reality what we are treating is how the patient feels about themselves inside. Against The Odds is one of those rare awards that puts the focus on this in a way that potential patients and the public at large can see.
Why do you think orthodontists should enter ATO?
The competition requires the patient or parent to write about their orthodontic experience and the impact it has made on their life. This gives a rare insight in to the thoughts and feelings of patients in a way that is far more candid than would be commonly found in even the most glowing online review. For that reason alone, it’s worth entering, regardless of whether you win or not.
Richard Jones, Chair of the BOS Orthodontic Specialists Group, said:
“The Against the Odds competition continues to highlight the very best of our profession and the tremendous value that orthodontics has on people’s lives. A confident smile can change a person’s perception of themselves, their self-esteem and their self-image. We look forward to receiving entries.”
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