Real-life story - Manoj Kumar
Manoj always enjoyed science and helping people. During his A levels, he decided that dentistry was the career for him.
How I got into the role
I always enjoyed science and helping people. During my A levels, I decided that dentistry was the career for me and the NHS has provided great opportunities to deliver dental services in the community, including working in a mobile dental unit.
Since qualifying I have practiced dentistry as a clinical dental surgeon at NHS hospitals, practices and community dental services. I have progressed to my current role as senior dental officer through Continuing Professional Development (CPD), which the NHS has really supported me with. CPD allows me to continually learn and update my knowledge while working.
What I do
No two days are ever the same. My job is so varied and includes many aspects of dental treatment. One moment I could be undertaking an extraction and the next offering school children advice on how to better look after their oral health. I also see get to see mix of people including those who are particularly anxious about seeing a dentist! Making these patients feel relaxed gives me a great sense of achievement.
I often treat patients in the dental access centre but sometimes I work in the mobile dental unit. This allows me to see patients who would not normally come to the dentist or find it hard to make the journey, such as those in care homes. I love being able to get out into the community and meeting the wide range of people living in Walsall.
The best bits and challenges
Although my job is often challenging, it is also rewarding as it allows me to help a range of patients with different dental needs. Relieving a patient’s pain and providing them with the best possible dental care and advice is a fantastic feeling. Knowing that I am making a real difference to a person’s health makes the whole job worthwhile and what drives me to get up in the morning.