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Using Humor as an Educational Tool with Dr. Gary Brigham, Founder of Brigham Orthodontics


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Randy Feldman

Dr. Gary Brigham is an Elite Premier Invisalign provider and the Founder of Brigham Orthodontics, treating thousands of patients and over 1,000 preteens and teens. He has been lecturing internationally on Invisalign treatment since 2004 and Propel since 2014. 

In addition to his Doctor of Dental Surgery Degree and Orthodontic Specialty Certification, Dr. Brigham earned a Master of Science Degree in Immunology at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, OH. 

He is the former Assistant Professor of Pediatric Medicine at the University of Illinois Medical Center in Chicago and currently teaches as an adjunct professor in the Orthodontics Program at A.T. Still University in Mesa, AZ, where he serves as the dedicated Invisalign and Propel instructor. 

Dr. Brigham serves on the Clinical Advisory Board for Propel Orthodontics and as a mentor for the consulting group, Your Ortho Coach. Along with Dr. Barry Glaser, he is the co-author of the newly launched webinar series, Insider's Guide to the Advanced Clear Aligner Practice.

Here's a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • The changes Dr. Brigham has made in his practice because of COVID-19 and how the pandemic has impacted his teaching
  • Dr. Brigham’s Clear Aligner webinar and what makes it different from others
  • The role technology and innovation has played in the orthodontic industry
  • Dr. Brigham talks about Dr. Jonathan Nicozisis' treatment concept for orthodontists and shares his thoughts on the rise of DIY orthodontics 
  • Why Dr. Brigham uses humor when teaching and how he keeps the fun in his practice during these times of COVID-19
  • Dr. Brigham talks about his leadership style and why it’s effective
  • Dr. Brigham’s future plans, his business superpower, and how he likes to read his books
  • Where to learn more about Dr. Gary Brigham

In this episode...

Dr. Gary Brigham is a storied orthodontist and amateur comedian—that is, he likes to use humor in his lectures. Dr. Brigham knows just how to tickle a funny bone and likes to use humor as an educational tool in the classroom and when communicating with his patients. 

Humor is a great way to engage with people. It makes interactions and conversations lively while creating a fun and relaxed atmosphere. And according to Dr. Brigham, using humor helps people remember what you talked to them about.

In this episode of the In Your Face Podcast, hosts Craig Weiss and Blair Feldman are joined by Dr. Gary Brigham, Founder of Brigham Orthodontics, to talk about using humor as an educational tool. Dr. Brigham explains why he uses comedy in his lectures, how he keeps his orthodontic practice a fun place for his staff and patients, and the roles technology and innovation have played in the orthodontic industry.

Resources Mentioned in this episode

Sponsor for this episode...

This episode is brought to you by Mouthguard Club and Retainer Club. Both services help drive new patients, reactivations, and referrals to your orthodontic office. Mouthguard club provides personalized custom mouthguards that are perfectly fitted to your teeth. You can fully customize the design and even put your team logo on it.

Retainer Club is the easiest way for orthodontists to provide their patients with perfectly fitting retainers at a great price, while also sending you a steady stream of new patients in your office who are actively interested in getting treatment. Over 1000 patients already love Retainer Club and it's easy to use online services to regularly order and replace the retainers without the need to bother their offices. 

Orthodontists love Retainer Club because they feel confident that the smiles they created are being maintained for life and that their long term fans continue to refer new patients to their offices. To learn more about becoming a Retainer Club partner and to bring in more patients go to

Episode Transcript

Intro 0:09

What happens when a successful entrepreneur who built a billion-dollar company and a veteran orthodontic specialist team up to share their stories of entrepreneurship and experiences and building a thriving business? You get the In Your Face Podcast. Learn how to survive and thrive in today's ultra-competitive market. Now, let's start the show. 

Craig Weiss 0:39

Craig Weiss here.

Blair Feldman 0:41

And Blair Feldman here. We are the co-hosts of the In Your Face Podcast, where we discuss stories of building a thriving business in today's competitive marketplace. Craig has scaled up a consumer business to over a billion dollar valuation.

Craig Weiss 0:54

And Blair has a very impressive background as a Practicing Orthodontist for 20 years and he was the team orthodontist for the Arizona Diamondbacks and Phoenix Suns for three seasons, now we help orthodontists grow their practices. This episode is brought to you by Retainer Club, the easiest way for orthodontists to bring online services into their practice. Retainer Club provides your patients with perfectly fitting retainers at a great price while freeing up your valuable schedule from retainer appointments that take time, use PP and often annoy your patients. Retainer Club also sends a steady stream of new patients who are actively interested in getting treatment into your office. Over 1500 patients love Retainer Club and orthodontists have the confidence that the smiles they created are being protected and maintained. Free your schedule from retainer appointments and focus on profitable treatment, while ensuring your patients have straight teeth for life. To learn more about becoming a provider, go to

Blair Feldman 1:49

Today our guest is Dr. Gary Brigham. Dr. Brigham has been lecturing internationally on all aspects of Invisalign treatment since 2004 and on Propel and Pulse Vibration. Since 2014, he's a diamond plus provider of Invisalign and treated thousands of patients including over 1000 preteens and teens. In addition to his doctor of dental surgery and orthodontic specialty certification, Dr. Brigham earned a Master's of Science degree in immunology at Case Western Reserve University in Ohio. He's the former assistant professor of pediatric Medicine at the University of Illinois Medical Center in Chicago. He currently is an adjunct professor at the orthodontic program at at Still University in Mesa, Arizona, where he serves as the dedicated Invisalign and Propel instructor. He further serves on the clinical advisory board for Propel Orthodontics. And as a mentor for the consulting group, Your Ortho Coach along with Dr. Barry Glaser. Dr. Brigham is the co-author of the newly launched webinar series Insider's Guide to the Advanced Clear Aligner practice online. Dr. Brigham, welcome to the show.

Dr Gary Brigham 2:55

Thanks for that introduction. And I guess that's all the time we have for this podcast.

Blair Feldman 3:09

It was the easiest one. Yeah. So starting off, we were talking a little bit in the pre show about it. But obviously these are kind of crazy times we're in right now. And, you know, it's having a unique impact. I think on orthodontics along with a lot of other professions. I was wondering if you'd start us off by just kind of talking about where you're at in terms of practice and adapting to these changes. And what do you see happening in the near future?

Dr Gary Brigham 3:31

Well, obviously, we've had to make some very significant changes we, when COVID hit and when that office was closed down, so we literally stripped the office to nothing. There's no furniture in our office anymore. There's no magazines. We put up these Lucite screens that surround the reception desk, and there's nothing we've taken out all the flowers we've it's literally bare bones as a matter of fact, I can turn into a dance studio, my reception area right now because it actually looks like what you know, and that's where my staff has been doing Tick tock, you know, dances so that they can get the mind mizel take advantage of the situation. Yeah. But I've been very fortunate to have always practiced in single rooms, single suites. And we've always had little couches in it for the parents or for spouses. So it's been very helpful for me because I don't have to deal with that Bay concept at all. I've had a couple orthodontists call me asked me how I was handling that in terms of dropping sheets of plastic in between, or, you know, seeing patients every other chair, which really cuts into your productive productivity. So I've been very fortunate. And then, you know, I had the opportunity to take an old friend to an eye appointment during COVID. And I noticed that every room they had these little signs saying, This room is disinfected in between each patients. I said, Is that really necessary? And they said, Oh, yeah, that cuts down all the patients coming in. Saying has this room been disinfected? So I actually stole that I went back to my office and I had these signs printed up not only at the front desk as soon as the patients come in, but in each cubicle say, just to assure patients and certainly what I expected patients didn't ask anymore. I only had a couple patients coming and saying, Do you sterilize your instruments? I almost want to say, well, not today.

But it just it reflects the fact that patients are have an elevated level of concern. And I wanted to be pre emptive in terms of addressing that concern. And so I think we've done a pretty adequate job. And especially since we've actually had some social media responses from patients saying they appreciated the fact that we've really went overboard in terms of being we've had masks at the front desk. So if patients didn't come in with a mask, we asked them to use that and we keep patients out in the car and on Until we are ready to come in. So we've done just about everything that we've learned from other practices as well as some things that we've instigated ourselves.

Blair Feldman 6:07

And do you think area that that's that those changes are going to be permanent? Or do you think that maybe in a post vaccine world, things will return back to the way things were?

Dr Gary Brigham 6:17

You don't know. I honestly don't know. You know, there's a whole group of patients that are just really focused on fear, understandably, and so they might just feel that we've gotten through one pandemic, when's the next one coming? Because you've got patients talking about that already. And of course, social media doesn't help social media really fuels fear. And also, you know, that there's a lot of misinformation that patients really, regardless reality simply because social media is geared towards whatever patients actually are attracted to. And they're attracted to anything that creates fear and misinformation. So I don't know what's the future. is going to bring, but I can I do know that this setup is going to stay like this for a very long time and probably for a considerable period, even if a vaccine comes about.

Blair Feldman 7:13

Sure and and Gary what I was curious you know part of your you know your professional life is is obviously in the clinic but the other part is teaching. How has the pandemic kind of altered your your teaching? What what impact has it had there?

Dr Gary Brigham 7:30

Oh, it's completely I had, I had about eight speaking engagements throughout the summer that were all summarily cancelled. And I expect the ones in October to be canceled too. But what they've done is they turned around and turn them in. I've been had requests for webinars, so I just finished a teen trilogy webinar for a large group called kids braces on the West Coast they have about I think they have something like 90 orthodontists throughout the state of California. So I presented those one webinar per week and this. That's why I was a little bit busy last month and then they asked me to mentor these orthodontists for about 90 days. So now we go through the Invisalign forum, I've been able to start mentoring these doctors. And then of course, the greatest change is when Barry Glaser and I have been doing these in house courses in my office for the past, I'd say six years. And we got our last one in on the first weekend of March before everything shut down. So it was Barry that came up and said, we've got to convert this into webinars and also to expand it.

BLair Feldman 8:37

So now we've

Dr Gary Brigham 8:39

prepared to launch on August 1, our it's a 12 week online advanced clear aligner course and it's going to consists of about 24 on demand webinars, and I'm going to be doing 12 and Barry's gonna be presenting 12

Blair Feldman 8:57

That's awesome. But since we're on the seventh Have the advanced clear aligner series tell us a little more about who it's for? And what makes it different than some of the other offerings out there. I mean, I think my experience is when when this whole, you know, COVID shutdown started, everyone was turning to webinars, and I feel like there's a little bit of fatigue in the in the zoom, you know, webinar zone right now. So, so what is it that you feel about these webinars? That's helpful? How is it gonna be different than other offerings that are available?

Dr Gary Brigham 9:29

Well, first of all, I think you've really hit the nail on the head with that player, because I think everybody is really exhausted. So for one thing, my experience and also from the literature is you can't have two hour webinars, you can't have three hour webinars, I got off a three hour webinar, and I was exhausted. So these webinars are going to be limited to about 60 to 80 minutes and that's it, just so that we can hold their attention. That's that that's one thing that we're really focused on, right. And the other thing is We have to present material in a different light than from anyone else. And I'll give you an example. One of my modules is going to be cosmetic dentistry for orthodontist. And I've been doing that for about five years, you know, since the literature also shows that everyone's gone visual because of social media. So in order to engage patients, you have to give them the visual experience that they're not only familiar with, but they get excited about. And when I've had these patients come in for Invisalign consultations, and they're coming in with chip teeth, you know, before we scan, we're always recontouring the teeth. Now if there's someone that comes in with something that can't be recontour it out and their size alleges, then we'll just offer to take care of that before we scan. And since I've been doing this for so long, after a while we started charging for it and now it's become such a integral part of my practice, that I've hired a dentist to come in One to two days a week to handle all that because there's so much demand for it. So I'm going to that whole module is geared towards how orthodontists can can actually engage in some of this and help further monetize their practice.

Craig Weiss 11:16

You know, Gary, I'm curious to hear you talk a little bit about the role that that sort of technology and innovation has played in the industry. I mean, it's kind of an amazing thing that you started lecturing on this kind of Invisalign clear aligner technology back in 2004. You know, it's for some people, they probably who are outsiders like me, they might look at the industry and think that clear aligners are a relatively new technology. And so I'm just curious sort of what role you feel like technology has played in shaping orthodontics from from the wire bending it used to be and what what other things you think might be coming down the pike that might, you know, sort of change and alter the future of the industry?

Dr Gary Brigham 11:59

I think Clear aligner therapy was ahead of its time in terms of where technology is going. Because it's, it's going towards a complete digital program and digital platforms. And I think clear aligners is ideally suited to that. And when I Taro scanners came about, it's now virtually possible to get patients through their entire treatment without having any type of analog type of therapy. And now, when Invisalign launched their Invisalign first product about I think it's going on two years this October. It is now feasible. I've experienced that in my own practice, where patients can come in at the age of 678 or nine, undergo first aligner therapy for Invisalign first, and then their second phase, finished with Invisalign Teen as a finishing appliance and never have to see any type of race through their entire life. You know, I give that an analogy to I remember maybe 20 years ago when they came out with us. sealants. And now I'm seeing this host of patients that come in and they don't have any type of restorations whatsoever because of that innovation with sealants and get getting that preventive dentistry done. And I now I'm beginning to see a parallel with orthodontics in terms of going all digital and actually having a large number of patients go through orthodontic treatment without ever having to have an impression. And with ever having to have any type of fixed appliance. It's remarkable.

Blair Feldman 13:32

It is remarkable. I'm curious, I don't know if you saw Well, our mutual buddy, Dr. Nichols thesis, I think he's everybody's buddy. He had a post recently on something that I saw on Facebook and it was a really interesting concept, conceptually for orthodontists to think about it was the notion that he believed that we should charge more now for fixed appliances for braces than than any of the clear aligner treatments due to the fact that it's multiple Pull in office manual adjustments of an appliance that not only takes time in the office, but also has, you know, the ability to generate aerosols that need more PP needs more appointments. I don't know if you heard that common but but hearing it, what do you think about that concept?

Dr Gary Brigham 14:17

Well, first of all, I've always think that Jonathan is way ahead of everyone in his concepts, and he's a very smart guy. But I also think that he lives in Princeton, and I've never been to Princeton. But yeah, it could be where the hobbits live, I'm not sure. But come on.

Blair Feldman 14:35

Yes, exactly.

Dr Gary Brigham 14:36

But that wouldn't fly in Scottsdale, Arizona. What I'm experiencing is patients coming in for digital, you know, tele dentistry consults. And they're doing a lot of shopping now, because nobody knows what the future is going to bring. And so, you know, when you give a console and the patient will say, Well, my dentist said he can do it for $2,000. Yeah. So what you're going to see is a lot I once read an hour About 10 years ago, I think it was from Avram King and he talked about, we're gravitating towards the zero margin society. And what he was saying is that you're going to see because of technology, things are going to get less expensive. And that's, that's true, you can get things very cheap. A lot of things are manufactured in China, and because of the lower costs, and it's really helped the economies. But he also said that that's going to translate into services too. And what we're going to see is you're going to see a price point where the price point is going to change. And I don't think it's going to go up, it's going to go down for the run of the mill patient. Now, I'm not talking about the complex patients, but in so doing that will force the health profession to become more efficient, and to use technology in ways that they hadn't ever imagined 10 years ago, and I'm beginning to experience that now.

Blair Feldman 15:52

Hmm, interesting. I have a follow up question about your course. Is it specific to Invisalign, or is it is it useful in For any clear aligner system,

Dr Gary Brigham 16:01

it's actually set for clear aligner obviously, both Barry and I are on the faculty line. So we you're going to see patients treated in Invisalign, obviously, and it's also limited only to orthodontists. Gotcha.

Craig Weiss 16:18

Interesting. I'm curious. You know, with respect to, you know, we've talked a little bit about technology and about sort of what the future holds. What do you what are your views on on kind of this DIY? orthodonture that that's obviously, you know, come up, and it's gotten a lot of publicity. Not all of it good. In the last few years, what do you think the future holds? And in terms of, not just do it yourself, but but the role that that orthodontists play and maybe protecting their traditional, you know, practices?

Dr Gary Brigham 16:51

Well, first of all, I don't think that this do it yourself is going to go away. I think there's something like 38 companies that are doing this smiledirectclub has just announced that they've gone into Europe and Asia. Yet, if you take a look at Yahoo Finance, you know, they indeed, there's some indication that they've only got three months left of cash flow. So, so you know, but the bottom line is, that doesn't mean anything to me, because we know that that was all venture capital. That smile direct was built on. And also, I've had a little of experience with venture capital and know that they don't necessarily care about making money. Because a lot of times, it's just tax write off, they're just trying to park x excess money, you know, so it's not important for them. So that's one of the reasons why I think that these companies will continue to sustain themselves, and they will also attract a certain segment of the population that has no other alternative. I think some aligner companies have attempted to meet that demand or actually challenge it a bit. But the bottom line is There's a number of patients that you, for example, Barry Glaser says in his teleconference, he always asked what their budget is. And when you ask a patient that they're going to say, Oh, $500 thousand dollars, you know? So that's one of the reasons why in my own concepts, I don't ask about budget, I try to make a connection with patients and find out what bothers them about their smile, and also how we can address them in the most efficacious way, the most efficient way and also in the most cost effective way. Nice. So I, once again, I think they're here to stay. I think they will challenge the orthodontic profession to a certain degree, but I think it'll also promulgate orthodontists beginning to do more aligner services within house through 3d printing.

Blair Feldman 18:49

So, switching gears a little bit back to, you know, the education component. I've been to Well, I've had the I don't even know if you remember not but many, many years ago, I had to Luxury and privilege of being in your office and spending a day with you in Scottsdale. But I've also been in hirjis lecture many times most of the time with a steak in front of me and a glass of wine sitting at a steakhouse somewhere usually on the bill of like Propel or Aligner I don't know who's paying that night. But every time I hear you speak, first of all, I always enjoy and I always learn a ton, but I you you carry the room with you. I always think you do such a great job of using humor in your in your lecturing, and even my wife was a general dentist, would you speak to general dentists? Came back one night and said, Do you don't have to bring him he's hilarious. You gotta talk to that guy. I'm just curious, where do these where does Where's your humor? I mean, if I was the cat, I don't even know if I can categorize. I'm sure you can do a better job than I could. But there's a little bit of sarcasm, a little bit of biting humor in there. I mean, where does it come from? Is it planned in advance? How do you how do you do that? And obviously, is it intentional as an education tool? Because I think it's the Great tool, but, you know, where did what's the role of humor in your lecturing?

Dr Gary Brigham 20:05

I think the role of humor is important in every aspect of every bit of communication that I do, especially with my patients. So I have a lot of practice. And once in a while on a Google review, you'll see a patient say, I really appreciated Dr. Bringing sense of humor, it was fun going through treatment. So that, you know, that's important to me. But humor is a way to engage with people, you know, we go to these webinar webinars, and sometimes, you know, when I was in the audience, I'd actually be in the back of the room and see a lot of orthos picking up their phones or reading newspapers and things like that. And so, I think one way to engage is to have a little bit of bite in the humor. And also, you know, I've heard people say JC really tells it like it is, Well, not really, but what I am doing is by incorporating humor and sharing some of my experiences that are sometimes bizarre, but I make connection because I've had doctors come up and say, you know, I've had that experience too. And so, and also, more importantly, when you're disseminating information, it should be fun to a certain degree too. And I think that really helps. Because when people are laughing, they'll tend to remember certain stories of, or certain aspects of what you're trying to convey to them. And it makes dissemination of information so much easier, and so much more fun.

Craig Weiss 21:25

Is it a challenge for you, Gary, to kind of keep the fun in dentistry, you know, these days when there's kind of a lot of negativity in the air or a lot of or you can't see the person smiling because you're wearing a face mask and the like, or have you found, you know, more innovative ways to keep the fun in dentistry or how are you approaching that?

Dr Gary Brigham 21:45

Well, I have a great staff and they're very playful. I used to put a damper on that 15 years ago because I didn't think it was very professional. But now I just let them run free. And the reason why is because I found that Patients really connect to that. Now, you're not going to believe this. All right, but, you know, we've done a lot of tic tocs. And we've been getting on one of our tic tocs. We had 108,000 views 108,000. Now, what does it What does that mean to bringing in patients? Well, I thought, not much, because it's a worldwide platform.

Blair Feldman 22:19

Really, I don't need to give you $1 now. But if you can help me with that,

Dr Gary Brigham 22:26

Exactly. But I actually had an attorney who I'm treating and he lives in Houston, so it's a long one of those long distance Invisalign. But he saw on a tic tocs and asked if he could when he came for his next appointment if he could do a tech talk with my staff. Now, that's all I never thought that would happen. But it's just another example of people want to have more fun in their lives and they want to be engaged in the fun and so I just encourage my staff to go with it. I have these parents come and say, Oh, I saw your stuff on tik tok. They're so cute. I didn't know parents. We're on Tick Tock. I thought it was just the kids. So I learned a lot. I've learned a lot from staying engaged with my staff and the patients.

Craig Weiss 23:08

And you know, what's great about it is I think you said, you know, initially, you kind of thought, like, let me let me taper this down. And and I feel like, there are businesses that have made, I think, a brand around their humor. And the one that comes to mind to me is like Southwest Airlines. You know, they they've done such a great job of using humor, even on things that you'd think, well, you really can't joke about safety. You really can't joke about, you know, what happens when the oxygen masks come down. And yet they did right, and they totally pulled it off and executed it perfectly. And I think that people don't feel less safe on a Southwest Airlines Flight, they feel like they're actually more relatable. And it's a positive thing. If anything, you're more paying attention to the safety briefings on Southwest than any other airline because you want to hear what new jokes they're gonna say. So I think it's a great example that you can Be professional and funny.

Dr Gary Brigham 24:02

And you know, Craig, you've you've just hit that again on the head, because why would you believe that? Just last week, I had two patients come in and share some of the jokes they heard on Southwest Airlines. So you're absolutely right. It gets people talking about the business. And there was no fear that they, they thought it was so funny. They wanted to share it with other people.

Blair Feldman 24:23

I think, you know, in that same notion, I think you can't, you can't effectively pull off humor, if you're not confident and capable, clearly, Southwest is confident and capable of what they do. You have tremendous business and a great record. And you do too. You know, it makes me think that, you know, other platforms like some of these DIY companies, we got to be careful, like there's they don't have a lot of space and confidence and a lot of experience over the years and the benefits of DIY treatment to be humorous. So I think you know, your experiences a lot allow you it's sort of that mastery level of skill that allows you to be humorous and use it effectively. What do you think about that?

Dr Gary Brigham 25:06

You're right. And let me tell you this, I've always approached all of my seminars, all my webinars, and all of my, you know, in house courses, as well as my lectures as, as preparing for I have to be the smartest person in the room without thinking that I'm the smartest person in the room. So and that's a very important thing to me, because I have to make sure that they understand that I consider them colleagues. It's not uncommon for me to make a remark during the course of my lectures that, you know, I think orthodontics is hard. It's a hard profession. And I think we're all you know, as orthodontist, we're in this together, and the most important thing is that we should be able to share our experiences and to support each other at every opportunity that we can. And I think that resonates a lot, because that's not always the case. In our profession.

Blair Feldman 25:59

Yeah, I agree. We talked a little bit in the pre show about your style of leadership with your team and you made a comment about not knowing your schedule for today. I was wondering if you could talk a little bit about your style of leadership in the practice, both in terms of how you've managed and sort of work through during this crisis, and even pre you know, COVID what your style of leadership is with your team and why you think it's effective.

Dr Gary Brigham 26:27

You know, something I wish I could take credit for it, but I've been very fortunate and one of the reasons why I you know, I haven't put an ad in newspaper in 20 years, every time someone moves on, someone says, Hey, I have a girlfriend that wants to be a dentist. So my staff is usually consists of people that are either want to be hygienists, or want to become dentists, and out of my practice, have come 15 hygienists, three nurses, and 10 dentists' and as of now, I've got one auxiliary. That is work, you know, actually to now that are studying for the DTS. So I've been really very fortunate with regard to that. Because if anybody just gives a hint that they're interested in dentistry, I said, well, then you need to work here. And the reason why is that I know that they want to be there, there's no running out the door. I have remarkable staff that will come in at any time any day to support. As far as my interaction with the staff, I think the thing I've learned the most is just to listen to people. I've never learned anything by saying anything. So I've tried to keep my mouth shut, when it comes to interacting with my staff, and listening to them and seeing what, what interests them what they need. You know, I've always made a point of Don't get involved in your staffs personal life, but you need to be aware of their personal life because their personal life impacts their professional life. And if there's any time that you can be supportive, then you should For example, besides having staff meetings where occasionally give a lecture on, you know, Invisalign first or something like that, I also gave a lecture on relationships, and how to maintain lasting and loving relationships. And when we have staff meetings, it's usually talking about how to relate to people. You know, for example, one of the things I have to constantly impress upon them is, don't ever take anything personally from an angry patient, because there's a backstory that you don't know about. And 100% of time, it probably is, has nothing to do with you. And as I watch my staff engage with these upset patients, I'm always impressed when a patient will come back and say, Can I talk to that dog? So I just want to apologize for my behavior. Now, so I'm very proud of my staff. I'm surrounded by remarkable souls. And I think that's what's helped sustain me in this in these changing environments.

Craig Weiss 28:55

So, you know, I'm curious, what is that? What does the future hold for you? Is it? Is it sort of trying to do what you've been doing? You know, better? Is it more of the same? Is it? Is there something on the horizon that is significantly different than the past? You know, curious, what does the future hold for you, Gary?

Dr Gary Brigham 29:13

Well, first of all, you know, because everyone says, What are you going to retire? Yeah. Which Neiman's? And some in the backstory price, what are you going to drop dead, you know. But, but the bottom line is this. And Blair, you can attest to this too, you know, for example, the 80s and the 90s. Everything was going along at a, at a linear pace, so to speak, in terms of technology, then all of a sudden, it went vertical, and it went vertical very quickly. And now I oftentimes I feel like a hamster on a wheel, because it's, it takes every effort on my part to just to keep attempt to keep up with technology. I believe that if I'm lecturing, I need to practice because if you're not practicing, that you're not Really as current as you can be, and when you're lecturing and when you're sending information, you have a real responsibility to the people to whom you're disseminating information. So I plan on staying in this mode for as long as I possibly can, as far as expanding. Since patients have been asking me for years about nutritional advice and things like that I've, I'm now a consultant for a rehab center in Tucson called Ark. And we're putting together oral hygiene platforms, webinars, as well as nutritional webinars to help these these patients build a new life and a more healthful life before they go on because, you know, your your mouth is your window to the world and also a reflection of your general health. So once we've got a captive audience, so it's a real opportunity for me and since we can do this all online, it's it's something that I, I have I've always had an interest in. I don't put this out In my webinar in my curriculum VP, but I have a half a PhD in biological chemistry in nutrition that I got at the University of Illinois. And I completed the first year before the government sent me to Tokyo to be an orthodontist, because I had gotten out of the draft because of educational deferment. So they felt that I owed them. And I never went back to finish because I'd been in Japan for two and a half years decided to go back to working on patients. But that interest in nutrition and biochemistry never left me so I've just found an avenue to, to promulgate that.

Craig Weiss 31:35

Well, first of all, I love I love the idea of, of, you know, using as an excuse to the government sent me to Tokyo. I never tried that before. Yeah, and I think it's gonna really come in handy. We, we, we always try to sort of, at the tail end of our interviews, enter what we call the lightning round of questions, which are the short form questions and answers that we'd like to kind of ask the same questions to everybody. They sort of compare the answers. So the first thing I always like to ask is, what would you consider to be your business superpower? What is the thing that you feel like you do better than then than most everyone else?

Dr Gary Brigham 32:10

Well, first of all, I can't be so presumptuous to say that I do things better than anyone like that I don't have my finger on the pulse speed of any orthodontic practice. But what I can tell you is this and this supposed to be a short answer, but I was blessed to actually learn from some of the great people in the industry. And that was Paul tsca, the father of craniofacial surgery, and I was fresh out of orthodontic school, and I watched him how he conducted consultations with children. And he was the only doctor I ever saw that got down on his knees, so that he made sure that when he talked to a patient, no matter how young, they were looking down on him, instead of he looking down on them, and he never talked to the parents, he always talked to the patient, even if they were six years old. And I carry that with me and I've conducted that knowledge throughout my practice so I don't have any superpowers but I have a super Focus. And that focuses in on looking at patients, making eye contact, making sure that I'm always sitting below them and focusing on the patient and letting the patients listen to our conversation.

Craig Weiss 33:14

Hmm, great. So, Gary, if you were given a book to read, are you a audible listener? Where would you do the paper version?

Dr Gary Brigham 33:23

I think both. I just want to add one more thing about communication. I was also given a hand of the book by Sam present ski my first day on the job, it was called care without care. And it was the most disturbing book that I ever met, I've ever read. And so unfortunately, it's by Barbara Fischer Perry. I don't know if it's even in print anymore. But it was the horrors of her experience with the medical profession and doctors that really just lifted her as a number and her child has just another patient. So I made a determination that I was never going to be that type of doctrine. I hope I I haven't. I've proved

Blair Feldman 33:58

to be okay. So you're the you're the You first of all, that's a great point on communication. And we'll, we'll look it up in our show notes. So if it's available, we can share it. But in terms of the in terms of the book, you're a hybrid, which I think Craig and I are both fit into that category. And is there anything you're listening to right now or reading right now that's kind of moving you or that that you feel is influencing you or something that you would recommend?

Dr Gary Brigham 34:21

Well, let me tell you this, because I've been so involved in the past three months up to my elbows and sticking my nose in research to prepare for these webinars. It's very clear, just as this podcast is showing that the future is really Tella, dentistry, telemedicine and tele orthodontics. And so the real challenge is for us to accumulate as much knowledge, information and skills to help move in that direction.

Blair Feldman 34:47

Gary, on behalf of Craig, I want to thank you so much for being on the podcast. You have a super important voice that like I said earlier, I always love hearing and I think it's important that you continue to share on any platforms that you can find whether it's on your webinars or at a steak dinner. It's paper, you know, it's always paid for.

Dr Gary Brigham 35:12

Yes, that'll be a cold day and before that happens, but I appreciate your generosity Blair. It's always been a pleasure interacting with you and Craig, that deeply pressured him to meet you. Thank you.

Blair Feldman 35:20

Yes, sir. So for our listeners, Gary, what's the best way online to find you and get ahold of you and learn more about what you're doing?

Dr Gary Brigham 35:28

Well just go onto the website now Brigham orthodontics COMM And, and that's basically about it.

Blair Feldman 35:36

Okay, awesome. Well, thank you so much, Gary. We really appreciate it.

Outro 35:48

Thanks for listening to the In Your Face Podcast with your hosts, Craig Weiss, and Blair Feldman. Be sure to click subscribe, check us out on the web, and we'll see you next time.