Imagine you are drilling a tooth and your power cuts out
Ivoclar Vivadent supports medical care providers on their mission in the Himalayas.
Nepal - a country that conjures up images of a dream holiday destination with soaring peaks amidst spectacular scenery. For people living in the Himalayas, however, life is arduous and medical care is poor. Dentists are far and few between in the lonely mountain villages. This situation propelled Dr med. dent. Nora Kreller, dentist in Berlin, to travel to Nepal to give dental care to the locals. Ivoclar Vivadent supported her in the form of an in-kind donation. What experiences has the 29-year-old had on her trip?
While in many countries people brush their teeth in the morning as a matter of course, the conditions for the villagers living in Nepal’s mountainous regions are different. They know far too little about oral hygiene and low-sugar diets. And what is worse, they simply do not have enough money to afford a toothbrush and toothpaste. “Patients often walk several days to the nearest dentist to have their toothache eased,” Nora Kreller reports. When they finally have the chance of having their teeth treated, the treatment often covers only just the bare minimum. Often the people are simply too poor to afford any substantial dental care. And even if the pain has been treated, the consequences of the suboptimal treatment can be seen with every smile.
“The caries risk can be described as very high. I saw and assessed the treatment needs of over 250 patients during my two weeks in Nepal. None of them had a caries-free dentition,” the clinician says. The treatment needs in the population are massive and you will never be able to cover them all. However, you have to start somewhere. The fate of each individual matters. “We were able to treat only the worst affected patients, trying to save their teeth.” The Berlin-based dentist, who completed her dental studies with flying colours and who is currently completing a Bachelor’s degree in medical journalism, noticed that the conditions for practicing medical care were nowhere near the standards in Europe. The differences are particularly felt in those moments when the power cuts out.
The meadow outside of Nora Kreller’s accommodation was used as “surgery”. The treatments were carried out on rough-and-ready benches or in an empty room without additional light source. She used small metal containers as spittoons for saliva and blood. “Power cuts and power fluctuations pushed our devices to their limits quickly. So, we had to use them judiciously,” she remembers. The treatments had to be completed quickly and efficiently.
“Adequate isolation was only possible to a limited degree when we placed fillings. So it was necessary to complete the fillings within the shortest time possible.” It was literally a case of the chemistry being right and the curing times being short for this to succeed. Ivoclar Vivadent supported Nora Kreller and her team on location with a donation of appropriate materials.
“Tetric EvoCeram Bulk Fill enabled us to repair the cavities of many patients with a quick and long-lasting filling. Together with our patients in Nepal, we would like to say a big thank you to Ivoclar Vivadent for the generous donation.” Dr med. dent. Nora Kreller.