Sneak peek at SmileCon 2024

New Orleans meeting highlights dental needs of veterans

Center of excitement: Attendees of SmileCon 2023 in Orlando, Florida, share a laugh in Dental Central.

SmileCon will be the place to be when it rolls into the Big Easy later this year with engaging learning experiences, the latest dental technology and lots of fun.

The meeting will take place Oct. 17-19 at the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. Registration opens May 8, and the agenda builder with course details will be available for attendees beginning April 15.

Those attending SmileCon can choose from four registration options this year: the one-day Hall Pass for exhibits only (and the opening session if purchased for that day); Dental Central Pass for all activities in the Dental Central exhibit hall; Smile Pass for most continuing education courses and events, with the option to purchase hands-on activities and master classes; and Platinum Smile Pass for all events and CE, including hands-on activities and master classes.

Pricing will be released in mid-March. Early-bird pricing ends May 31.

The Give Veterans A Smile program, which is in development and will be housed within the ADA Foundation, seeks to shine a light on the unmet dental needs of veterans. New this year to SmileCon is comprehensive programming dedicated to veterans’ care, including CE courses and information regarding organizations addressing access to care issues for veterans.

"In partnership with the ADA Foundation and dental professionals nationwide, we've witnessed the extraordinary compassion of our dental members,” said Jo Holiday, Ph.D., senior director of continuing education for the ADA. “Together, we're committed to addressing the oral health needs of veterans through the Give Veterans A Smile program. Through SmileCon's top-notch continuing education, we're equipping our members to reach even more veterans in need."

Also new this year will be a tailgate party Oct. 19, gathering participants together in Dental Central one last time to connect and enjoy refreshments before they conclude their time at the meeting. Dentists are encouraged to represent their dental school at the event and socialize with fellow alumni. Another signature SmileCon event will be Bouncin’ in the Bayou, a festival the night of Oct. 18.

Dental Central will be the center of excitement throughout the meeting, with plenty of exhibitors and good times. The Dental Team Hub and Podcast and Influencer Hub will return this year, while the ADA Forsyth Institute will fuel the new Innovation Hub.

In Dental Central, dentists can get the scoop on the latest trends in dental products, services and technology and visit the booths of internationally known exhibitors and new and exciting companies for demonstrations and show specials. Unexpected delights in the exhibit hall could include a chance encounter with the tooth fairy, treats at a pop-up snack station or performances by a New Orleans-style brass band.

The ADA Dental Olympics will also be back this year for the third time, bringing dental schools together to compete for bragging rights. The event is sponsored by Pacific Dental Services.

Dentists will have a wide variety of CE at their fingertips during SmileCon. Master classes are a new course format this year, offering a deeper focus on practice management. Returning formats include presentations, hands-on activities, and experiences and conversations.

CE themes will center on innovation, wellness, veterans and re-licensure requirements. Innovation courses will highlight the integration of cutting-edge technology and science in practices, while wellness courses will help dentists focus on their self-care and career longevity. Courses related to veterans will empower dentists and their teams to serve veterans in their community and beyond. Completing state re-licensure CE credits will be easy at SmileCon, with courses designed to meet those requirements available on-site.

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