13th annual Mouth Cancer Awareness walk in Hyde Park
It’s 5pm on Sunday evening and luckily me and my tired feet have managed to get a seat in Euston station whilst I wait for my train home. I decided to offer my time this weekend as a volunteer at the 13th annual Mouth Cancer Awareness walk in Hyde Park. “Why are you doing that?” I’ve been asked …..”why not !?” I say. I’m so glad I did it, it’s been a great day.
Hyde Park is a beautiful setting for the event, how lucky if you live in London to have such a picturesque place to walk, cycle or run in. Full of flowers, wildlife and the people watching opportunities are endless. I was up early to get across London to help set up for the walk, arriving at 8.45am I met the organisers and other volunteers and we quickly got to work setting up the area ready for the arrival of the participants later in the morning.
The walk was started to raise funds for the charity and also to help raise awareness of mouth cancer and spread the word about prevention and early detection. Hundreds of people of all ages came to take part including survivors of the disease.
I was one of the team registering people, giving out water, t-shirts and then goodie bags at the end. There was a mobile screening unit where people could have free mouth checks and a survivor came on stage to tell her story. You couldn’t help but get emotional hearing her journey and then thinking of those who have lost their lives as a role call was read for some of the people being remembered.
It was great seeing everyone’s faces as they crossed the finish and being able to congratulate them, a brilliant day for a brilliant cause.
I would definitely volunteer again for this or similar events, I get a real kick from the volunteering work I have been lucky enough to be involved in and will continue to do it when I can. I urge everyone to try it, there are loads of opportunities out there and whether it’s a day or an hour of your time you can give, someone somewhere will be grateful.
Dentist Sean Living Our Core Values
True to our practice core value of progression, I have recently completed an extensive program of further training in orthodontics (teeth straightening).
My interest in orthodontics began over 10 years ago when I first started using clear aligners to improve my patient’s smiles. A few years later I then progressed into providing the option of using fixed cosmetic braces with the Six Month Smile® system.
While completing over a hundred cases I have always been keen to continue to develop my skills, to enable me to progress and undertake more complex cases safely, and ultimately provide my patients with more options and the potential to have complete care within Heath Dental. I have always been aware of the limitations of my skills and would refer a patient on to specialist orthodontists when appropriate.
So, over the last 12 months I have been undertaking a course organised by highly regarded specialist orthodontists, and having completed it successfully and I am now well equipped to take care of more challenging cases.
This will include those that not only would take longer than cosmetically focused fixed braces, but also ones that may require extraction of teeth.
I am also now able to offer some treatments to children, which, with ever increasing waiting lists and greater restriction of NHS orthodontic services, may be an option worth exploring.
With our affordable payment plans, orthodontic treatment may be more accessible than you think. Just speak to a member of our reception team and book a complimentary consultation to find out more.
Being a dental nurse is a job I love
You may or may not have heard of Megamind, supervillain turned superhero, well I like to think that if Megamind wasn’t busy saving the world he would probably spend his time working as a dental nurse. :0)
Being a dental nurse is a job I absolutely love, you spend your day with a variety of people, get to change people’s lives with their smiles, improve their health and build great relationships with patients and team members.
This job does require a certain skill set, daily you need to multi task, constantly learn and evolve, be ready for change at anytime big or small, remember a big catalogue of knowledge and more……so now you may be seeing why I feel Megamind is an appropriate comparison for dental nurses (except for the fact that he was a villain initially, no villains here!!)
Progression is one of our team values and one of my favourites. We have recently had our annual appraisals which includes planning my development for the year ahead. I’m excited to be going on a course next month in London to enable me to remove sutures for patients, just one of the extra duties as a nurse we can train to do.
You can’t stand still in this job, you have to be able to move with the times and expand your knowledge and skills and more importantly you need to love learning.
Luckily for me i’m a bit of a self confessed dental nerd and always jump at the chance to go to a course or conference. In November I am going to be attending the Homeless and Inclusion Conference in Birmingham to learn how I can help the homeless with dental needs.
I could reel on for hours about what I have done and want to do in my career but I will stop myself as I’m aware this is a blog not a dissertation ha ha.
I am grateful to have a job I love and that offers me so much variety, and also grateful to have wonderful bosses Sat and Jo who help me develop, thanks guys !!!
Heath Dental – Team Bonding
It’s sadly not often we get to spend quality time with each other outside of work, so when we do it is always really good fun and nice to be able to enjoy each others company without having to watch the clock checking if lunchtime has ended.
We of course spend hours a day with each other in the practice, however the days are busy and conversations can be interrupted, rushed and sometimes left unfinished. So I always personally look forward to these times we all gather outside of work.
We were all lucky enough to be treated to afternoon tea by Sat and Jo this weekend for our hard work last year, an outing we have much been looking forward to, well who doesn’t like cake !?!?!
So on Saturday we headed to Coombe Abbey, a beautiful historical country house set in stunning gardens. Seated in the conservatory we all enjoyed a yummy selection of savoury and sweets treats, washed down with lots of tea, coffee (pinkies out!) and it wouldn’t be a party without a glass of fizz too of course.
Sat and Jo’s three boys also joined us, and they always keep us entertained, especially when Dylan their youngest got involved in the wedding that was taking place in the gardens next to us lol
It was a lovely afternoon, I definitely overindulged (yes please to extra clotted cream) but that’s what treats are for heh.
Jo and Sat thank you so much for taking us, these treats do not go unappreciated and if anyone wants a lovely place to go for afternoon tea then I would recommend Coombe, well worth a visit.
Michelle – clotted cream enthusiast
A Message From Portugal Part 2
As always happens the second part of the holiday has flown by. Having travelled to the south last Wednesday on a fabulous stretch of deserted motorway, which as we all know never happens back home, especially during rush hour, we arrived at what I can only describe as the polar opposite of where we had just left.
The village of Terena in the north was such a simple understated place filled with delightful locals who barely spoke a word of English but were there to make sure that we were welcome. They couldn’t do enough for the children especially.
Here in the South we have the indulgence and the opulence. Everyone speaks English and the whole place feels like it is set up with tourism as its main goal. I expected the children to prefer the hotel in the south, with its kids club and multiple swimming pools but to my surprise and delight they preferred the more “real” villages of the north.
We travelled down here to meet up with friends which again has been the highlight of the week. They are staying elsewhere and we have travelled out to see them on a couple of occasions. It just goes to show that no matter where you are, people make the difference and good friends should never be taken for granted.
We will be home in a couple of days and back to see other friends and family, including my fantastic work family. On 31st August we will be 13 years old at HeathDENTAL. I wish to thanks all of our patients and my superb team for keeping us going for the past 13 years and look forward to the next 13.
Bye for now
A Message From Portugal
Well it’s that time of year again when you take a couple of weeks off from the normal routine to try to reconnect with your wife and children ( long days and weekends at work undeniably meant little quality time with the family) and hopefully recharge your batteries.
This year is different. Having lost dad only 6 weeks ago, going on holiday seemed wrong and rather self-indulgent. In fact had friends not being getting married in Portugal, we may have decided not to go.
Having arrived here last week, I must admit that this is just what we needed. It has been a busy week toing and froing from the hotel where the beautiful wedding was staged back to the house in the sticks but has been filled with lots of fun with the kids and with friends. Its nice to be able to accept an invitation to play with the kids when they ask you to take them on a table football or a game of pool, rather than having to make an excuse that you have work to do, which we all know as parents more often than not leaves a discernible feeling of guilt. This lack of guilt is liberating.
What strikes me most though is how little we really need as humans to have a good life. The village that we are staying in has a church, an old derelict castle which my youngest has adopted as his own (he calls it Dylan Castle), one small very male dominated taverna, a small local shop with predominantly empty shelves and no lighting and a restaurant which rarely opens. That apart everyone is really happy and welcoming. We have been able to buy local fresh produce from the shop and although very basic, have enjoyed dreaming up lots of salads and barbecues and of course local wine ( not for the kids I must add).
Today is our last day at the house, tomorrow we are heading off to the South to catch up with other friends for a week. I will be sad to leave this unassuming yet therapeutic village but will look forwards to further adventures with the family.
Goodbye from Portugal,
Here It Is Our Total Raised For Rough Runner – £1782.67
Thanks to everyone for their kind generosity and support.
To the team who ran the course you should all be super proud, we have smashed our target and all of us finished the course (with a few bumps and bruises).
All this money will go to providing dental care to the children of Morocco and the refugees in Lebanon, helping to end dental pain.
Here are some photos from the day…
Dental Mavericks Asni Trip
An Update From Our Very Own Dental Maverick Trustee, Michelle
I had a great trip last week, a very successful clinic. We were in Asni, a small town at the foot of atlas mountains. We did a trek in the mountains one day with a local guide, 3 hrs and tough terrain but this is the kind of walk the local people do all the time just to get to markets or to school !
Stunning scenery, wonderful people but sadly a poor area and so dental health care is not readily available and the diet is high in sugar, so rates of decay are very high. We worked in the local school and provided fluoride applications, did extractions and a few fillings, but extractions mainly due to the decay rates.
Everyone gets a toothbrush, toothpaste, oral hygiene instruction. Since we started the project 4 years ago ( now the 5th year) the rate of extractions we had to do has gone down. We work in partnership with the Eve Branson Foundation on this project.
Over the 3 days in clinic we carried out 436 fluoride applications and 298 extractions ( a very small amount of the 298 would be filling maybe 15 or so, so mostly extraction).
Dawne Core Value Winner
Dawne was the winner in February for our Core Value – Courage. Well done Dawne!
Last month we visited a couple of nurseries to teach the children about visiting the dentist, brushing their teeth and good and bad foods.
We are happy to visit any nursery in the area to help educate the kids, so that they can maintain their smiles for life.
Here are a few photos from the visits, including Snappy, our practice mascot.