Mouth cancer charity launches talent show

Students are being invited to enter a talent show in order to raise awareness for mouth cancer.

The Mouth Cancer Foundation charity is launching the second Mouth Cancer Voice Awards.

In an effort to raise awareness, the Foundation is scouring the country searching for the brightest young stars. 

A casting day is being held on Tuesday 14 July, Wednesday 15 July and Thursday 16 July 2009 between 2pm and 6.30pm in Manchester, Birmingham and London. 
 
Students of all ages are invited to attend an open casting at the Flixton Dance Studios, Curzon Buildings, Princess Road, Urmston, Manchester, M41 5SQ or the Fatback Recording Studios, 28-34 Stratford Street North, Birmingham, B11 1BY or the Studio 4 – Basement, Pineapple Studios, 7 Langley St, Covent Garden, London, WC2H 9JN.
 
The Mouth Cancer Foundation is targeting young people through the Mouth Cancer Voice Awards and encouraging them not to take their voices for granted.

Cancer can occur in any part of the mouth, tongue, lips, throat, salivary glands, pharynx, larynx, sinus, and other sites located in the head and neck area. Every three hours someone in the UK will die from mouth cancer. 

In its very early stages, mouth mancer can be almost invisible making it easy to ignore. An increasing number of cases are being seen in young people. Drinking and smoking increases the risk of mouth cancers and students are being warned against binge drinking and smoking. Individuals indulging in both face a 30 times greater risk than abstainers.
 
The Founder of the Mouth Cancer Foundation, Dr Vinod Joshi, says ‘We want all students to know that mouth cancer exists and what symptoms to look out for in order to help with early detection. If in doubt, get it checked out. Don’t take your voice for granted! The Voice Awards is a fun way to get our message across.

The Mouth Cancer Voice Awards will celebrate the most talented, brightest young singing, comedy and vocal stars in the country. 

All entries will be voted for by the public via www.mouthcancervoice.org and the winner will be announced in November during Mouth Cancer Awareness Week.

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Tooth implant helps blind man see ^

A builder has had his eyesight restored with help of his two front teeth.

Martin Jones – who lost his eyesight 12 years ago – underwent a marathon eight-hour operation in which his teeth were removed and then used as a lens holder for his right eye.

The 42-year-old from Rotherham, South Yorkshire, lost his sight when a tub of hot aluminium exploded in his face.

 

Christopher Liu is the only consultant in the country capable of carrying out the revolutionary tooth transplant.

 

He is a corneal specialist and consultant ophthalmic surgeon based at Sussex Eye Hospital, Brighton. He is also president of the British Society for Refractive Surgery.

 

The procedure began when one of Mr Jones’ canine teeth was removed and converted into a holder for a special optical lens by drilling a hole in it.

 

The tooth was then inserted into his cheek for three months to enable it to grow new tissue and blood vessels.

 

Then, the tooth was inserted, with the fitted lens, into Mr Jones’ right eyeball.

 

Within two weeks of the final operation to implant the tooth in his eyeball his sight returned and he was told he had almost perfect vision in his right eye.

 

After his accident, Mr Jones had to wear a special body stocking for 23 hours a day after suffering 37 per cent burns to his body and had his left eye removed after it was destroyed in the accident.

 

But his right eye was saved even though he was unable to see through it.

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Awards feature: The icing on the cake^

A business park in Hatfield, Hertfordshire, might not be considered an ideal location for a dental practice – where’s the passing trade? There are, however, 17,000 people working in the area, so when Harry Singh noticed the ad in the local paper for new premises he saw the potential from corporate clients and took the plunge.

In order to build up a patient base, he offered discounts to the surrounding companies, most of which offer corporate packages to staff, so he made sure Aesthetics was the dental practice of choice for the local business people. This took a lot of persistence – he had to keep contacting the companies – but it paid off in the end.

The premises was a brand new plot built entirely to Harry’s specification and design. Smita Mistry, senior hygienist at Aesthetics, commented: ‘It was an empty shell when he showed me the shop and I couldn’t imagine how it would look, it seemed like such a lot of work – it was a bit scary!’ The practice is attractive, simply decorated in white with flashes of dark red to match the logo. The effect is a clean, fresh space that doesn’t feel like a dental surgery. It is a relaxed environment with comfortable white sofas and a coffee machine. Aromatherapy fragrances mask those clinical smells that patients find off-putting and there is wifi access – perfect for patients to be able to keep up with work while waiting for their appointment.

 

Each surgery has a TV screen for patients to watch whatever takes their fancy, or if they prefer, they can choose to listen to piped music instead. The whole
experience is friendlier, more inviting and more spa-like than a routine visit to the dentist.

Friendly atmosphere
All four members of the Aesthetics team started working together before the practice opened, so they were all involved in the hard work it took to prepare for the official launch. They had their induction together, and spend nights out socially after work, all of which has contributed to a group of colleagues becoming friends, something they hope shows in the atmosphere of the practice – and it definitely does.

 

The team has weekly meetings on Wednesday afternoons where the past week is discussed, along with any problems that need to be addressed and any ideas that people might have. ‘It’s really good when we have our meetings, all ideas are talked about as a team and you never feel like anyone will laugh at what you have to say, its quite relaxed,’ said Jenna Green, the care co-ordinator and skin therapist at Aesthetics.

 

Everyone is involved in the decision making and there is a practice manual into which they all had an input. Jenna, Smita and Marian Dilley, the front desk co-ordinator, do not class Harry as a typical boss: ‘Harry is an easy-going and laid back boss – he lets everyone get involved so we all feel like it’s a personal success. Financial information about how well the practice is doing is shared openly with us – I’ve never worked anywhere like that – so we know what we’re working towards,’ said Smita. Jenna added: ‘Coming from a beauty background I was worried that Harry might be really strict, but he’s been great. I’m revising for my nurse’s exam and he has set aside time each week to revise with me, so I really feel like I have the backing of my boss.’

“We all want to be a part of the practice’s success, so we do what we can because we’re working towards the same goal”

 

Harry explained that when they advertised the front desk and nurse positions they were
inundated with more than 150 applications. He carried out two stages of interviews to make sure the personalities of his new staff would complement the team. Neither Marian or Jenna come from dental backgrounds, but rather than being a hindrance, this just means they have brought their existing skills to the roles. Jenna’s beauty skills are being incorporated into the Aesthetics skin health and spa dentistry services that are on offer, while Marian’s customer-facing experience shines through at the front desk.

 

Both of them fancied a role that offered something different and more challenging than they were doing, and they describe their career changes as ‘the best decision ever made’.
When Harry set up the practice he offered a bonus scheme to the staff, but they all declined it. The reason? They all wanted to see the business grow, and simply being a part of that was reward enough.

Secret of success?
Harry believes the work they put into the presentation of the application made them stand out: ‘It was time consuming getting it right, but it was worth it.’

 

There is a strong team ethic at Aesthetics which is felt by all the staff: ‘Although we have our
definitive roles in the practice, we do all contribute to other areas to make sure we’re providing the best service we can.’ They all show each other their different job roles, share advice and train together, creating a skilled workforce who happily and comfortably work with each other. ‘We all want to be a part of the practice’s success, so we do what we can because we’re working towards the same goal,’ said Smita. Harry said: ‘It feels like everyone owns the business’ – a feeling demonstrated by the hard work everyone puts in.

 

Even though they were really proud of what they’d achieved, the team hadn’t actually expected to win – because the practice is so new. ‘After working so hard to get the practice open, it was fantastic to receive some recognition,’ said Smita, ‘It was the icing on the cake, it’s a really nice feeling that we get on so well – as colleagues and as friends – and it’s good to show everyone what we’ve achieved.’

 

The main benefit of winning the award has been reinforcing Aesthetics’ good work to their patients. ‘Some of them have come in and said they knew they made the right decision by picking us, the award makes them feel confident in their choice,’ said Harry. He also feels that it has helped with word of mouth: ‘Existing patients tell their friends and family that they are pleased with our services, and the awards give us credit to back up the recommendations.’

 

The awards are shown on the Aesthetics website, which helps to attract new patients – they give credit to the practice and show patients that they will receive a good service. As well as winning Best Team in the south east at the 2008 Dentistry Awards, they also won the Best Marketing award, and were runners up in the Best New Practice, Most Attractive Practice and Most Innovative Practice categories at the 2008 Private Dentistry Awards. They are proudly displayed in the waiting room for all to see: ‘This used to be where we kept the coffee machine, but we decided to display the awards here instead. We’re really proud of what we’ve achieved so we thought, why not’ said Harry.

 

Other dentists have commented on his success when he meets them on courses and at seminars: ‘Its always nice to hear that your peers see you as successful.’

The future
The team’s first aim since getting the business up and running was to win an award, and they’ve certainly done that. Smita explains: ‘Now we’re concentrating on becoming really well known in the area and promoting our brand so we are recognised. We want to expand the services we offer, with more surgeries under one roof. The skin treatments and spa experiences we currently have are really popular and we’d like to further this with more facial aesthetics and a bigger team.’

 

Thinking ahead, Harry commented: ‘I don’t think we will be entering this year, not too much has changed since last time – we did so well in 2008 so it would be an anti-climax to enter and not win.’ The Aesthetics team is currently busy growing the business and they are very focused on this. ‘We loved the awards last year though, the whole event was so much fun, we even got to meet Kris Akabussi,’ said Harry, and I may have caught a glint in his eye that suggests he might be tempted to enter again.


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<p><strong>You could be one of the winners of the Dentistry awards 2009! Gain the recognition you deserve and enter by calling Elisa on 01923 851734 o visit www.dentistry.co.uk/awards2009 for an entry brochure.</strong></p>
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‘Dress code row’ dentist escapes being struck off^
<p>A Muslim dentist has been declared fit to practice despite refusing to treat women patients unless they wore traditional Islamic dress.</p>
<p>Dr Omer Butt was found by the General Dental Council (GDC) to have discriminated against non-Muslim patients at his Smile clinic in Unsworth between April 2005 and June 2007.</p>
<p>But the GDC ruled that his behaviour did not affect his fitness to practise. </p>
<p>The dentist was found guilty of misconduct by the GDC almost two years ago.</p>
<p>At that hearing, it was proved that in December 2006 Mr Butt, of Sheepfoot Lane, Prestwich, refused to treat the son of a woman who wasn’t wearing a headscarf and called the police when she refused to leave the surgery without a complaints form.</p>
<p>There was a further charge that he refused to treat another woman who was seeking emergency dental treatment because she wouldn’t wear the religious headdress.</p>
<p>Mr Butt insisted to the woman’s husband that wearing the scarf was a requirement before treatment and the family left the clinic without being treated.</p>
<p>The GDC ruled that Mr Butt dealt inadequately with complaints made by these two patients.</p>
<p>It also ruled that refusing to treat the woman needing emergency work amounted to misconduct as it was serious and undermined confidence in the profession.</p>
<p>In 2007, Mr Butt was found guilty of serious professional misconduct and given a formal reprimand by the GDC for refusing to treat a woman without a headscarf.</p>
<p>Mr Butt was also found guilty last year of misleading PCT bosses for failing to declare driving convictions.</p>
<p>He was convicted of dangerous driving and banned for 12 months in October 2003.</p>
<p>In a statement the GDC said: ‘The committee has taken full account of the need to protect patients, to maintain confidence in the profession and to declare and uphold proper standards within the profession.</p>
<p>‘It has already stated that it views your misconduct as serious. If the committee had heard these matters in 2007 it is likely that it would have found your fitness to practice to be impaired.</p>
<p>‘However, it has taken account of the passage of time and it has concluded that your conduct is remediable and has been remedied.</p>
<p>‘Further it is not likely that you will repeat it. Accordingly the committee has concluded that your fitness to practice is not impaired.’</p>
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Man turns up to dental check-up naked^
<p>An American man has been charged after he turned up naked to a dental appointment.<br /> <br />Police say 41-year-old Christopher Hoff, of Stratford, was also five days late for his appointment.</p>
<p>Authorities say Hoff entered Optimus Dental’s office Monday with nothing on. A startled female receptionist screamed, and he ran away.</p>
<p>Officers went to his home, and Hoff told them he had been sleeping all day. Police took Hoff to the dental office, where the receptionist identified him.</p>
<p>‘She recognised him immediately – his eyes are very blue and he has a good tan,’ the police report of the incident states.</p>
<p>Hoff, who was charged with two counts of disorderly conduct and one count of public indecency, was also charged with failure to comply with fingerprinting when he refused to undergo the process while in custody, police said.</p>
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Dental centre benefits from research award^
<p>King’s is to get a £10 million Wellcome Trust/Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council Medical Engineering Centre (MEC) award. </p>
<p>This funding is to run for a period of five years with the Dental Institute being a significant contributor and beneficiary (£1 million) of the research programme in the Centre, led by Professor Rezza Razavi and the imaging sciences division within the college.</p>
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<p>This new initiative called ‘Rebuilding Faces’, led by Professor Timothy Watson, director of research and head of the Biomaterials, Biomimetics & Biophotonics (B3) Research Group at the Dental Institute, addresses the fundamental concepts that underlie the biology, engineering and manufacture of tissues concerning the human face.</p>
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<p>The effect of abnormal growths (neoplasia) and trauma and their clinical management, often leads to profound tissue loss in the head and neck, devastating both the patient and their family.</p>
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<p>At the Dental Institute, 480 new cases a year are managed, with an increase in new cases of 10% p.a.</p>
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<p>The King’s College London-based head and neck cancer unit has five year survival rates of 78% for squamous carcinomas (a form of skin cancer) compared with a UK and US national five-year survival rate of 55%.</p>
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<p>The Dental Institute therefore has a growing population of survivors in need of facial reconstruction to restore their quality of life.</p>
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<p>Professor Watson said: ‘This funding will underpin tissue engineering and imaging development in the Biomaterials, Biomimetics & Biophotonics (B3) Research Group and will undoubtedly enable us to attract further grant income.’</p>
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<p>The Rebuilding Faces project is part of the Guy’s & St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust Biomedical Research Centre’s drive to translate basic laboratory research into clinical practice.</p>
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Medicine worsens dry mouth, say dental experts^
<p>A new study suggests that dry mouth is made worse by taking medication.</p>
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<p>One in four adults in the US has the condition, which means up to 25% of the population could be at risk of tooth decay.</p>
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<p>The study by scientists at the Academy of General Dentistry (AGD) has identified that xerostomia could be exacerbated by taking medication.</p>
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<p>The British Dental Health Foundation, speaking after the US publication, is now urging greater preventive action against the problems dry mouth can cause.</p>
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<p>Foundation chief executive Dr Nigel Carter said: ‘Dry mouth affects our saliva levels which can expose the teeth to risks of tooth decay, since saliva is a natural protection against caries.</p>
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<p>‘With advances in healthcare more and more medicines have hit the market. As more people take multiple medicines the risk of oral health problems such as xerostomia has greatly increased, especially amongst older people.</p>
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<p>‘Dry mouth increases exposure to the main causes of tooth loss, decay, erosion and gum disease, yet these problems are entirely preventable. A good oral health routine and regular trips to the dentist, as often as the dentist recommends, will help look after your mouth and quality of life.’</p>
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<p>It was found that 91% of dentists found that patients coming to them with dry mouth had a regular intake of at least one medication.</p>
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<p>Dr Cindy Kleiman, from AGD, said: ‘The number of xerostomia cases has increased greatly over time because people are taking more and more medications.’</p>
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<p>Medication, such as painkillers, anti-depressants, tranquilisers, diuretics and antihistamines, contribute to the condition, particularly when they are combined.</p>
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<p>Xerostomia is also thought to be more prevalent in smokers and can impinge on a sufferer’s ability to eat and speak.</p>
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Dentists slam Ugly Betty for ‘stereotype’ braces^
<p>Orthodontists have slammed the US TV comedy <em>Ugly Betty</em> for the ‘detrimental’ portrayal of wire braces.</p>
<p>The series follows the exploits of brace-wearing Betty Suarez, battling to make a career in the beauty-obsessed fashion magazine industry.</p>
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<p>Now in its third season on Channel 4, Betty, played by America Ferrera, is still wearing heavy ‘train track’ braces.</p>
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<p>But according to dentists, train track braces are very seldom prescribed to adults and, even then are not worn for more than two years.</p>
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<p>And UK orthodontists say they are worried the programme could discourage young viewers from seeking corrective dental treatment.</p>
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<p>A spokesperson for the British Orthodontic Society (BOS), criticised programme bosses for being ‘irresponsible’ in branding braces ugly.</p>
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<p>She said: It is irresponsible of the programme makers to portray Betty as “ugly” because she wears prominent braces.</p>
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<p>‘Ugly Betty is in its third year on our TV screens and Betty remains in over-exaggerated, heavy train track braces.</p>
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<p>‘This is not a true reflection of orthodontic practice. It is highly unlikely an adult would wear braces beyond two years.</p>
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<p>‘Betty’s braces are certainly intended to be seen by viewers as damaging to her appearance.</p>
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<p>‘People who wear braces are not ugly. People considering treatment should not be put off by such a stereotype.</p>
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<p>‘Many young people and adults see wearing braces as a rite of passage, and enjoy the transformation.’</p>
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