Finding out how to give even more back…
I recently attended the Homeless and Inclusion Conference in Birmingham, my first time at this conference I was excited to find out more about how I could become involved with providing dental care for homeless and excluded people.
Well the day certainly didn’t disappoint, it was eye opening, inspiring and motivating.
Speakers included dental & homeless charities, various professionals from the dental world and the talks I found the most emotional were those from people who have been homeless themselves. Listening to people’s stories,why they became homeless, their journey, difficulties and prejudices they have faced brought a tear to my eye.
One particular speaker was Sarah Harries, she was living on the streets of Leeds, had suffered a lifetime of abuse and had a drug addiction. However with the help of others and a lot of hard work herself she is now a Pentecostal Minister, studying a degree and married with a daughter, four years ago she was close to death. A wonderful success story to hear.
I will definitely be getting involved where I can next year, through Crisis and Dentaid and doing some dental nursing for them. It has also given me a lot to think about in terms of day to day nursing here and what we can do to be aware and considerate of people and possible traumas.
I also wore my other hat on this day and presented a table for Dental Mavericks, to try and spread the word about our work and encourage attendees of the conference to join us for our 2019 trips. Scarily for me I had to present a short talk to the room about the work we do.
Not having done any public speaking before I was nervous to say the least( although most would argue I can speak more than needed any other time no problem ha ha) I survived though, no eggs or tomatoes were thrown and hope that I managed to encourage a few of the dentists to consider us next year.
Itero – Digital Scanning Instead Of Gooey Impressions
Finally, after what felt like an eternity, we are getting on top of the intricate techniques involved with successful patient scanning. It has been a very steep learning curve and as always with any profession, ongoing learning with new knowledge and skills acquisition will never stop.
We must stop and thank our willing patients who have often felt like guinea pigs whilst we clumsily navigated their mouths for the perfect scan. Without their patience we would never have arrived at the situation that we are at now.
Well, on Friday morning, we fitted our first fully digital crown on a scanned implant, and boy did it feel good. It is extremely rare not to have to make some sort of chairside adjustment to a crown, after traditional impressions and laboratory procedures but this new crown went on like a dream.
NO ADJUSTMENTS, PERFECT TECHNICAL FIT AND IT LOOKED AMAZING. The patient couldn’t wait to try a steak that same evening.
The benefits to everyone, especially our patients are huge:
- The process is far more comfortable without the need to impart gooey, sticky stuff into your mouth, whilst you try desperately to breath waiting for what seems like an age for the material to set.
- It is far more efficient and accurate, meaning that your appointments are more predictable with less risk of having to waste your time coming back for a second fitting.
- There are fewer adjustments meaning that your appointments should be quicker and less invasive.
- We can even scan your teeth to determine objectively if you have an active grinding and wear problem. This is done by 2 separate scans taken 12 months apart and digitally comparing the loss of tooth tissue. NO MORE GUESSING.
We love this new technology and our patients who have experienced it do too. We will continue to learn about how we can further benefit our patients and fulfil another of our core values of being progressive.
suture removal course
Another day, another skill learnt
On Friday I very excitedly set off down to London to The Dawood and Tanner Academy for my course on suture removal.
Once I have completed my cases this will allow me to removed stitches for Sat after Implant placement.
I love having extended duties and it’s great that as nurses we can get more involved in patient care.
We got to do some suturing practice (not that we can suture patients) but to understand what goes into suturing and appreciate the skill that’s involved in doing it well.
I have to say I have watched dentists doing it for some time and yes I am guilty of thinking oo it doesn’t look that hard, bit like sewing a button on………well I now have a new appreciation of how tricky it is, and I will be sticking to buttons only lol
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,
A Fruity Way To Wipe Out Tooth Decay
Is The Game Up For Dental Flossing?
From The Desk of Sat Kelley
Hi I’m Sat Kelley, Dentist and Owner of Heath Dental in Solihull.
Now, you may have read the newspaper articles recently rubbishing the use of dental floss as a fight against gum disease.
But before you throw away your boxes of floss and feel the euphoria of an extra 5 minutes of your favourite show before bed, please consider the following:
The evidence from the study quoted was poor as the sample number was far too small, so no real conclusion can be drawn from it.
Ask yourself why we need to clean between our teeth? Have you ever flossed (before bedtime is best) then taken a look at what comes out?
If you slept with all that gunk, be it meat or plaque, then think of the field day (or night) that those pesky bacteria would have.
You don’t need to be a science anorak to work out that this can’t be good for your teeth or gums.
A few minutes spent using good technique, which your dentist or hygienist can show you, in my opinion, will go a long way to reducing your risk of tooth decay (with inevitable fillings) and keep your gums healthy.
IT IS WHAT I DO EVERYDAY, using dental tape and my gums are in pretty good nick.
So I would carry on flossing or if you are a non-user then why not give it a go. It could save you time in the dental chair at your next visit.
Bye for now.