Meet our Dental Therapist - Louis Sparling
19th August 2021
What can Louis Sparling do for you? essential oral hygiene care and advice maintenance or restoration of gum health fluoride… read more
This month we have enjoyed meeting the new clinicians who have joined SpaDental. You may be aware that there has been a shortage of dentists in the UK, especially in the South West. We are pleased, therefore, to welcome our new clinicians with overseas qualifications to the practice.
Louise says, “Dentists in the South West are under a lot of pressure. Our teams in Plymouth and Saltash have been feeling it too, and so have our patients. It has been a hard few months as we have had to prioritise patients with urgent needs, and we know there is a long waiting list for routine appointments. Now, having three more talented and enthusiastic people on our team is going make a difference. I’m really happy to have Sai, Meghana and Tom join us. I wish them all the very best as they settle in.”
Fortunately, the scope of practice for a dental therapist is broad. As outlined by the General Dental Council (GDC), they can treat and advise patients. While often their focus is on periodontal care, they routinely perform other treatments such as oral cancer screening, dental x-rays and fluoride application.
Sai, Meghana and Tom are trained and qualified dentists, but because their qualifications are from overseas, they need to sit theoretical and practical examinations to be able to work as dentists in the UK. Due to the pandemic, the Overseas Registration Exams (ORE) were cancelled, so they have to wait for approval. SpaDental is fortunate to have gained the services of these practitioners.
SpaDental applied and gained approval to employ and mentor dentists from overseas. It has been a lengthy process requiring a lot of paperwork. Now we’re very pleased to have our first three clinicians in place, and on the road to becoming fully recognised dentists in the UK.
“I am a super nervous patient and suffer with panic attacks when it comes to dentistry work. As soon as I walked into the room I was crying and shaking and getting myself into a state but [s/he] was absolutely amazing. S/he spent time carefully going through was what needed, what was going to happen at each stage, showing me on my hand first so I would know what to expect, and regularly stopped to make sure I was ok and let me know that at any point I could put my hand up and s/he would stop. S/he made sure I felt safe and in control the whole time.” MS
“My new hygienist is amazing! I was very nervous after being terrified of attending for years. [S/he] was patient, listened to my fears and concerns and took time to make sure I was comfortable. S/he was also very friendly and chatty.” VS
“It is good that dentists have been found overseas to fill vacancies at Saltash, just a pity the NHS are so slow to complete the accreditation paperwork required. Because I only have good things to say, I mention [name] who was gentle, calming and painstaking.”
Dental therapists have a broad scope of practice as outlined by the GDC. Employed and recognised as therapists, our new clinicians will work within the framework below, until they receive recognition to work as dentists.
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