Speakers, L-R, Dr. Neil Hiltunen, Dr. Peter Thomas, Dr. Jeff Dodge, Dr. Jeff Ahlin, Dr. Alan Roadburg, Janet Prescott, Rev. Joel Grossman

9th Annual Meeting, Life After Dentistry

Summary of 9th Annual Meeting

October 27, 2017

Alan Roadburg, PhD

Life After Dentistry, Making it Happen

Thanks to Dr. Mickey Goldin for all the photos on this page.

As a social gerontologist, Alan Roadburg is uniquely qualified to guide us in our exploration of this new stage in our lives as he has lifetime studied retirement and aging for his entire career. Effective learning occurs in small groups where ideas are exchanged and expanded upon, and this was the format for our morning workshop. He guided us through the exercises and expanded on important points made in his book. When we explore our potential based on the needs and skills found in our work and leisure we can be better prepared to create a fulfilling and joyful retirement. The process enables us to learn from others’ experiences, as well as from how others perceive us. See a summary video here.

The afternoon session included two specific examples of how dentists can volunteer their time and talents, through volunteering for Hospice, and for Missions of Mercy.

Janet Prescott, and Rev. Joel Grossman from Hospice, in addition to describing their organization and operation, outlined Benefits of Volunteering: 1) Builds community, 2) Spiritual sustenance, 3) Increases appreciation for life, 4) Connection to others, 5) Decreases attention to everyday stress, 6) Increases emotional stability, 7) Gives a sense of purpose, 8) Senior volunteers stay healthier and experience greater satisfaction as they age. All hospice volunteers go through a training process that is more “life training” than volunteer training. Most of the operations of hospice are provided by volunteers. For more information about hospice volunteering go to this link: https://hospicefoundation.org/Volunteer.

Missions of Mercy (MOM), the other volunteer program, was presented by Dr. Jeff Dodge.   He described the Rhode Island project and how dentists may volunteer both clinically and in a support position. This a great opportunity for dentists who may no longer have an office, to serve patients in a variety of ways. Equipment, supplies, and personnel are provided, and the dentist only needs to be flexible enough to work in an unfamiliar environment enjoying a common spirit of providing much needed care to those in greatest need. Volunteer licenses can often be obtained by the state in which the program is offered. The MOM project is offered in 30 states through the America’s Dentists Care network http://www.adcfmom.org

Three dentists then talked about their own journeys and insights. Dr. Jeff Ahlin gave a very abbreviated version of his all-day course on the use of covered calls to provide a safe stream of income. Dr. Peter Thomas’ heart-felt presentation received accolades from nearly everyone in the audience, and Dr. Neil Hiltunen helped to clarify expectations that dentists may have as they look at their retiring years.

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