Dear first year,
Welcome to dental school! You will spend your next five years loving and
building. Welcome home. It is only fair that as an older (hopefully and a
little bit wiser) student I share my knowledge so here are a few things I wish
I had known earlier.
- Never ever let your
patients go. The likelihood is that they will
always need more treatment. There are some patients who have followed
students all the way through their dental careers, starting from junior
perio all the way to complex cons. If you patient is on time and lives
locally always never ever let them go!
- Make friends with the
nurses and dispensary staff. The scenario
which you fear will inevitably arise. There will be an afternoon clinic
with a nightmare patient, a stressed tutor and you will suddenly find you
have run out of impression handles /burs/materials. The nurses can make
you run around the hospital yourself and try and find it or if you are
nice they usually help out and make your life much easier!
- Prepare for your
clinics. When the tutor ends our session with
'read up about XYZ and make sure you know what you are doing next time' DO
IT. Do not try and think you can wing it. It looks unprofessional, you get
stressed that you are wasting the patient's time and the tutor ends up
being disappointed in you. Bad move.
- Never moan about
having too many patients! There will be a time
when all the waiting lists dry up, your most loyal patient will get ill,
another 3 will all decide to take a holiday and you will be glad that you
have a few more. It takes practice to juggle the patients effectively and
make progress on their treatment plans but it is something you will have
to do regularly once you graduate.
- Get good at giving
injections. You will rarely have an
appointment where you do not need to give LA to know your anatomy!
- Get involved in
societies outside the dental school. In fourth
and fifth year all your non dental friends will graduate and leave you
still at uni (boo hoo). This does give you more opportunity to concentrate
on your work however if you still have friends around outside the dental
bubble and have cultivated a hobby this is a great escape! It also looks great
on your CV.
- Enjoy yourself, it is
all over far too quickly!
If you have any comments or suggestions for
my blog please contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org
The British Society of Periodontology
is delighted to announce the launch of a collaborative guide for newly
qualified dental graduates. The Young Practitioners Guide to Periodontology
is a 31-page 'easy read' with contributions from enthusiastic specialists keen
to pass on their experiences in the management of patients with periodontal
diseases. Key elements of periodontal
treatment are covered with helpful text alongside pertinent clinical images and
even an example referral proforma for those patients who need more complex
care. Thanks are due to the editor Dr Elaine Giedrys-Leeper and editor-in-chief
Professor Ian Needleman. The BSP are grateful for sponsorship provided by
Johnston and Johnston and to Henry Schein who printed the guide.
In short, the Young Practitioners Guide to Periodontology is a really useful
resource that will be of great value to recent graduates. Over the next few
months the British Society of Periodontology will be providing a copy of the
guide to all new UK dental graduates. A copy of the book is also available in
the BDA library.