The M-Brace of excellence
Achieving excellence is the bottom line for M-Brace Orthodontics, a specialist orthodontic practice that operates in Glenrothes and Bathgate. And that approach has brought success. Reacting to demand, the practice’s site in West Lothian, which opened just six years ago, has now undergone further development
M-Brace Orthodontics opened its first practice in Glenrothes in June 2010, and its second in North Bridge Street, Bathgate (the subject of this profile) in 2012. There are plans to open a third practice in Airdrie in the near future.
The aim is to provide modern, fully computerised practices including a digital OPG/ceph machine, with friendly, highly trained orthodontic therapists and nurses, and admin staff.
The practice owner is Raja Mahesh, who qualified in 1994 in India. He completed FDSRCS after working in oral and maxillofacial surgery, and completed orthodontic training at Edinburgh in 2003. Raja established M-Brace Orthodontics in 2009.
What developments have taken place in Bathgate?
The site used to have three surgeries. However, to meet expanding local need and popular demand, we recently extended the practice when a residential flat next door became available.
By connecting that flat to the existing practice we have been able to add a new office, enlarge our staff room, add a fourth surgery, create a more spacious waiting room and a seminar room with presentation facilities.
Our surgeries are specifically designed with in-built cabinetry/computer monitors, display units and LED lighting. They are bright, spacious and air-conditioned.
We have an automatic alginate mixer machine to take impressions, with plans to introduce digital scanners for taking impressions next year.
Is there any interesting background to the building?
It is a very well-established local building dating back to 1856. When we first acquired it in 2010 it took a substantial refurbishment project to turn it into a modern, well-equipped practice. Among other things, we had to remove the original wooden staircase, which was situated in the centre of the building. And we uncovered a serious problem with woodworm which necessitated the ripping out of certain wooden fittings and thorough treatment of others.
What renovations or structural changes were required?
On this occasion, the changes were less dramatic than before, though they did involve the well-planned incorporation of the apartment next door.
Which companies did you work with and what was involved?
We got great help from IWT Dental + Services who acted as the main contractor for the refurbishment.
Our design and construction specialists were NV Design, who were also involved when we undertook the initial upgrade of the building between 2010 and 2012.
Cabinetry was supplied by Modwood who we have also worked with in the past.
And Dental Directory provided invaluable help by supplying the dental chair, suction unit and compressor.
Are there any facilities that have been specifically designed to make the experience of visiting the practice good for your patients?
We have a TV in the ceiling so that youngsters can watch cartoons and DVDs – it occupies them while they are having their braces fitted.
The larger, spacious waiting room is in the middle of the building with no direct window. Therefore we’ve added a mural of an open window as if looking out into a beach. There are TVs in both waiting rooms along with piped radio/music.
Most important, there is disabled access on the ground floor with a fully compliant digital X-ray room and a large surgery.
Can you tell us about your staff and their areas of specialty or special interest?
We have two specialist orthodontists, three orthodontic therapists, seven dental nurses trained in taking impressions and dental radiography, four dental receptionists and three practice administrators/managers.
The skills of the practice were recognised recently when it picked up the Interdisciplinary Team Orthodontic-Restorative award at the 2018 Aesthetic Dentistry Awards.
Do you provide NHS and private services? If so, which private services do you provide?
Ours is mainly an NHS practice. However, we provide private cosmetic orthodontic treatment using the latest advances in clear ceramic fixed appliances, self-ligating brackets, aligner systems such as Invisalign, lingual fixed appliances and fixed functional appliances.
What sort of training do you provide for your staff?
Keeping our people bang up to with all the latest techniques, technology and thinking is vital, so staff regularly attend a wide range of conferences and training courses. Our new seminar room is ideal for training courses, lectures and practice meetings. There’s a wall-mounted TV for presentations.
How would you describe the ethos of the practice and its approach to patients and employees?
There’s a thought-provoking story that we use to illustrate our philosophy…
A gentleman once visited a temple under construction where he saw a sculptor making an idol of God.
Suddenly he noticed a similar idol lying nearby.
Surprised, he asked the sculptor, “Do you need two statues of the same idol?”
“No,” said the sculptor without looking up. “We need only one, but the first one got damaged at the last stage.”
The gentleman examined the idol and found no apparent damage. “Where is the damage?” he asked.
“There is a scratch on the nose of the idol,” said the sculptor, still busy with his work.
“Where are you going to install the idol?”
The sculptor replied that it would be installed on a pillar 20 feet high.
“If the idol is that far who is going to know that there is a scratch on the nose?” the gentleman asked.
The sculptor stopped work, looked up at the gentleman, smiled and said: “I will know it.”
For us, the desire to excel is exclusive of the fact whether someone else appreciates it or not.
“Excellence” is a drive from inside, not outside. It is not for someone else to notice but for your own satisfaction and efficiency. Alternatively, you could say: “Don’t climb a mountain with an intention that the world should see you, climb the mountain with the intention to see the world.”