Clinics, Tutorials, Research & More...

Hey everyone,

So a lot of new things have been going on this week, both on and off-campus, so here's a quick rundown!

🦷 Dental Diary

At university this week, I had my first clinical skills session, where we sectioned teeth, which means cutting them in half longitudinally to show their cross-section and identify the anatomical structures of the teeth. Most of the session was actually spent learning how to operate the clinical simulators though, which was pretty boring, to be honest.

Onto the actual tooth sectioning though, it was very fiddly since we were working outside the mouth with no suction, so the water from the handpiece went absolutely everywhere, and this made it so difficult to hold the tooth in place steadily. Also, using the diamond bur was a totally new experience, and there was the lingering fear of stabbing my fingers, and the fact that it kept tearing my gloves didn't help either. This happened 2 or 3 times, but the first time it happened, the fingertip of my glove was completely cut by the bur and flew off, which was pretty terrifying!

Besides the clinical skills session, we had our first 2 tutorials, one on Conservative dentistry (gonna be calling this CONS for short) and Periodontology (PERIO). These were more clinical versions of our lectures and were more interactive and involved a lot more patient cases and discussions. I enjoyed the CONS one more, as I found it more interesting, especially since my Student Selected Component (this big essay I have to do by the end of this term) is based on caries management. I've got these tutorials every week from now on, and I felt as though most of the actual learning that took place last week was in these sessions.

🧠 Insight of the Week

This week's insight is actually wrapped up in a challenge for all of you guys.

Here's some context first though: so as you might know, I'm trying to build a reading habit, and over the last few weeks, I've read The Final Empire, which is a fantasy book that I have absolutely loved. Since finishing it, I had planned to take a break from that series (since it's a trilogy) and read To Kill A Mockingbird. After a couple of days though I found myself struggling to pick up the new book for two reasons. Firstly, To Kill a Mockingbird has an infamously slow build-up where the main plot doesn't take place for a while, and secondly, while reading it, I was constantly thinking about what would happen in the sequel to The Final Empire.

After reflecting on this, I decided to ditch my plan to read the trilogy over a few months and reading other books in between, and instead, just read whatever I felt like reading. This is because I thought about why I had started reading in the first place: primarily for pure enjoyment, and when I wasn't enjoying reading, I found no reason to read anymore. Ultimately, I shelved To Kill A Mockingbird and decided to pick up The Well Of Ascension (the sequel to The Final Empire), and I could not have been happier about that decision!

Now, this brings me on to the challenge: If you feel like you're doing something, not for the purpose you initially set out for, then just give yourself permission to stop whatever it is you're doing and go back to that purpose, or on the flip-side, change your purpose for doing that thing to suit what you're doing now!

✍️ Applicant Tip of the Week

This week's tip for all the applicants reading is to do with research. You might have done some research for your personal statement, and you will no doubt need to do research when interview season comes around, but the best way to do this research isn't 2 weeks before the interview; it's best to do this research now, once or twice a week, flicking through some articles and finding one that interests you. Once you do this, just save that article and when interviews come around, you'll have a huge bank of articles and research at your disposal!

Anyways that's all for now, but have a great next week everyone!

Omar Tabaqchali :)