Hating dentists is one of the few things that come naturally to many people. As natural as hating yourself and the world around you on bad hair days! Dentists have haunted your childhood days, taken the glamour out of your adolescent times by making you sport ugly metallic fixtures and rapped you on the knuckles for your deplorable oral health maintenance.
Since the dawn of the digital age, we’ve seen the proliferation of many dentist hate groups online with varying degrees of hatred. But we all know the inconvenient truth : love ‘em or hate ‘em , you can’t ignore them!
Sure, good oral hygiene is useful in that you make people not wish they were 20 metres away from you when you opened your mouth. But a proper oral hygiene does more than you think it does. Research shows that, if you don’t take care of your teeth and gums, your poor oral hygiene can actually lead to other health problems including indigestion, problems with the heart and other organs.
So the next time you go around likening your dentist to Satan, think about your mouth teeming with bacteria and then choose your bigger enemy wisely.
And here’s good news for those who have a sweet tooth : Common sense would tell you that dentists are human after all. And some of them even have sweet indulgences…beat that! We spoke to one such dentist a couple of weeks ago, Dr N Aizat from HarbourPoint Dental Centre, who has a weakness for Ben and Jerry’s.
Don’t worry, you read that right! We did use “ dentist” and “ Ben and Jerry’s” in the same sentence alright. But that shouldn’t give you the license to swim in Charlie’s chocolate factory and other la-la lands uninhibited. Dr Aizat stresses on the importance of brushing and rinsing your mouth after satiating your sugar cravings. Another important practice emphasized by him for proper dental hygiene is flossing – one of the most overlooked daily rituals. Don’t save this step for that “special date” or for when the bright, blue moon rises. For the uninitiated, dental floss costs under a dollar. Under a dollar!
Here’s the transcript for the video interview:
Did you always want to become a dentist?
That’s a very interesting question because I remember being quite the rebel during my school days. I used to always get flak from my dental nurse for not bringing my toothbrush. And look at me today! Dentistry, according to me, is not about filling gaps and cavities. You’re given the power to transform people. The power to give them the Hollywood smile they’ve always been enamoured by. You help restore people’s confidence—and that’s huge for me. It gives you the satisfaction of being a dentist and that’s why I’ve never regretted taking up this field.
Doesn’t it bother you to be examining people’s mouths closely?
Haha..I’m used to it. In fact, it’s quite interesting what you can see/tell from examining a person’s mouth. It gives you their history. Some of them have fillings that were done when they were very young that lasted through their fifties. Besides, it’s a part of my daily routine.
Do you have a favourite sweet indulgence?
I love Ben and Jerry’s. Chunky Monkey is one of my favourite sweet indulgences. A lot of patients think you should swear off sweets. But that’s not true. You can eat what you want provided you brush your teeth and rinse your mouth after that.
Do you feel heredity has anything to do with bad teeth?
Research has shown that there are certain bacteria that are passed down from the mother to the newborns, making them more prone to cavities and bad breath. Heredity does play a part, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t brush your teeth. You need to do your part in maintaining good oral health.
Do you have any tips for keeping our pearly-whites in tip-top shape?
The most important tip, besides brushing and visiting the dentist, is to floss. It’s commonly overlooked. Flossing is an important part of maintaining good oral hygiene. A lot of patients just brush, but they don’t floss.
The use of fluoride is also very important. In Singapore, our water is mainly flouridated, so it’s not really a concern.Some patients brush and floss , but still end up having cavities. That’s when the diet comes in. I’m not asking people to stop indulging in sweets. But it’s important that they brush their teeth and rinse their mouths with water.
What are the treatment and maintenance options offered by your practice?
At HarbourPoint Dental Centre, we offer a huge range of services. We’re a group of general dental practitioners that have come together.Our services range from basic skin polishing to advanced treatments like smile makeover, implants , orthodontic treatments, braces and laser whitening. We do have our own in-house specialist whom we refer to for complicated treatments.