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Aesthetic, high-end-dentistry on the Balearic island Mallorca

An interview with Dr. Degano and Dr. Koerge. A magnet for those with a special sense for beauty, enjoyment and aesthetics, Mallorca is a symbol for a special sort of lifestyle. The dental clinic Dentacare concentrates on high-end dental aesthetics. The Berlin dentist Dr Peter Degano established the group practice ten years ago. Dr Erik Koerge, previously active in Scandinavia and the Baltic region, joined the clinic on Mallorca in 2012. D’life interviewed the two dentists about their practice routine.

D’life: High-end aesthetics with internationally-experienced specialists. Did this practice specialisation develop over time or was it always part of a holistic concept?

Dr. Degano: The founding idea was to establish a single practice which could cover the entire spectrum of dentistry on a high level. Of course, such a plan requires time, if it is possible at all. Over the years, I learnt that if I wanted to achieve success within a treatment concept, I would have to work with the best that the branch could offer. I was lucky in that I was able to find these individuals and incorporate them in the treatment concept. So I was following a plan, but one which required a long time to come to fruition.

You said that you treat a lot of actors, models and VIPs. How did you manage to establish such a high reputation on the island and beyond?

Dr. Degano: Don't forget that I had a number of VIP patients in my Berlin practice. A proportion of these patients followed me to Mallorca, and soon spread the word. Nevertheless, this represents only a small section of my clientele. I have always sought to maintain the highest quality standards in my provision of dental care. As such, cheap dental tourism was never a realistic option for me. The high-quality prosthetic products which we provide came from Dentallabor Gottlieb (Berlin), which provides top-class functional and aesthetically-pleasing work. Of course, we had to work very hard ourselves. Just one example: our 24-7 availability. The modern practice atmosphere, our friendly (usually trilingual) staff and prime good location on the South-West of the Island did the rest. This all soon makes itself known.

How was it that you came to work with the internationally-experienced dental ceramist Inge Magne?

Dr. Degano: everybody involved in aesthetic dentistry has heard of Inge Magne. She visited our practice three years ago and I asked her whether she would do some work for us for one of our Russian patients. We were all enthralled by the results. The crowns and veneers actually looked like real teeth. Simply sensational. When she said she was planning to return to Europe, I asked her whether she would not rather stay on on Mallorca. Thinking it over for a day, she agreed and opened a laboratory next door to out practice.

How is it possible to organise a programme of interdisciplinary co-operation if the practice and laboratory seek to maintain the highest degree of aesthetic standards?

Dr. Degano: We must all work together to find the best solution for the patient in terms of function and aesthetics. In this sense, Inge are on the same wavelength in that we both seek to arrive at the best-possible solution. After completion of the clinical treatment phase, I work together with Inge and the patient, using the models and photographs to set out how we wish to proceed. We discuss everything - the material, the form, colour and length of the front. It is always worth investing the right amount of time at this early stage, as it is reflected in the outcome. When working on the front teeth, we always try out a plastic interim solution or a mock up with the newly-designed smile (i.e. the form of the teeth). Inge not only works with extreme precision, but also has a great talent for form and colour. She is always present at the fitting, but I rarely need to request any changes. In the rare cases that a corrective becomes necessary, this is performed immediately. This very convenient for both for dentist and patient alike.

In all honesty, I can say that we lead the market in aesthetic dentistry on Mallorca.

Dr. Koerge, you joined the practice in 2012. What made you decide to move to Mallorca? How long did it take for you to settle in?

Dr. Koerge: I bought a holiday home on Mallorca in 2005 and have made regular visits over the last ten years. As such, I didn't need any time to settle in. I first met Dr. Degano three years ago at the birthday party of a mutual friend. I said that I had long been toying with the idea of working as a dentist on the island, and it soon became clear that we shared a very similar professional approach. We soon decided to work together. We have never looked back.

Did you come alone to the Island, or did your family come with you? How did your children deal with the new situation in a foreign country?

Dr. Koerge: My youngest son is at an international school on the island; my elder children are at university in London. We were all familiar with the island from our regular holidays here, so the move was not too great a change.

How would you describe a typical patient at your practice? On average, how many patients do you treat per day?

Dr. Degano: Our clientele reflects the mix of residents and tourists on the island. The English, Scandinavians, Spaniards, the Swiss, Germans, Italians, the French, Russians, South Africans and even a number of Americans and Mexicans. The great majority is made up by the English. The number of patients we treat depends on the nature of the treatment which is required. I would say we treat between two and fifteen patients per day.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of working on Mallorca compared to your previous job in Germany?

Dr. Degano: One major advantage is the considerably reduced level of paperwork. The time we save on the unnecessary bureaucracy required in Germany can be invested in patient-care. This is another reason for our ability to maintain high quality standards. I can't think of any disadvantages at the moment, except the need to work when the weather is good.

How does the Spanish healthcare system work? What, are the biggest differences between the German and Spanish healthcare system?

Dr. Koerge: In Spain, everyone has access to free, basic healthcare funded by social security contributions. Over 90 per cent of the public use this public health system. Higher quality treatment provision and dentistry must be paid for privately. Only checkups and tooth extractions are freeof-charge.

You use the Dürr Dental Vector. How important is the role of prophylaxis on Mallorca in general and in your practice in particular?

Dr. Degano: As far as I know, the majority of dental practices on Mallorca provide a range of prophylactic treatments of more or less good quality. In our practice, we view prevention as mandatory. We have two dental hygienists to provide these services. The » Vector represents an excellent supplement for every periodontal treatment and made the purchase over ten years ago.

All your compressed air and suction systems (including the Power Tower from Dürr Dental) are stored in a dedicated technical room. Why did you decide to use the Power Tower? Which advantages does it provide in comparison to similar products from other manufacturers?

Dr. Degano: Our practice was planned and equipped by a German dental supplier. The » Power Tower represented the best possible solution, as it could best be integrated in the restricted space available and proved to be quieter than many comparable devices.

Digitalisation is also a global trend which has manifested itself in the dental branch. Which of your practice processes have been digitalised? Which digital technologies do you use? For example, do you use an intraoral digital camera or a digital impression device, CAD/CAM?

Dr. Degano: All our index cards and x-rays are available at every workplace in digital form. The laboratory is equipped with high-quality photographic equipment. We are still looking for an intraoral camera which is Apple-compatible. We spent a long time trying out the digital impression system, but the units need to improve considerably and become easier to use. We will wait a little longer.

Many thanks for the insight into practice routine on Mallorca.

Published by: rf/tk 04/16
Aesthetic, high-end-dentistry on the Balearic island Mallorca

Aesthetic, high-end-dentistry on the Balearic island Mallorca

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