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News Bulletin : ADA News Bulletin December 2011
34 DECEMBER 20 11 Compiled by Associate Professor Barrie Gillings clinical hints FESTIVE SEASON'S GREETINGS Your Compiler and the hard-working Editorial Staff wish all our readers a happy holiday season and a carefree and enjoyable New Year. CONTACTS Many dentists make friendships as students, and some continue them in practice partnerships. This helps to ensure a smooth-running practice, and a common approach to relationships with staff and patients. The friendships often extend to organised reunions, of which the gathering of Final Year 1954, University of Sydney Faculty of Dentistry is an example. This group has had reunions at 10, 25, 40, 50 and 56 years after graduation, the last held in October 2011. Readers will note that the last reunion was held only six years after the previous one. This shorter time period between reunions was chosen because it was clear that our fellow classmates were dying at an accelerating rate. Over 50 years, 21 of the original 66 have died, but over the last six years, we have lost seven. To have a reunion of respectable size, these figures suggest that the next one may have to be three years hence. Your Columnist urges his readers to have reunions. They are very enjoyable, especially if attendees are given a booklet containing pictures of colleagues, one at graduation and a current one, a brief resume of personal details, and contact details. But if you are of mature age, don't leave it too long before re-uniting, or there may not be enough for a quorum. At this particular reunion your Recorder was asked to comment on changes over years 1951-4, and the next 56 thus: There were 113 in first year, falling to 66 in final year, which included two women. Six of us had to wait until we were 21 before being registered. Nine of us are still members of the ADA, but only three still treat patients. Three have sons who are dentists, and one couple are dentists. The passing years reflect the change in Australian demography and educational preferences. In 2011, half of the 71 new graduates were women, and three-quarters of them have names suggesting a non-Anglo-Saxon background. Australia now has a true multicultural society of dentists. In 1965 our course was extended to five years. In 2001 the degree was called Bachelor of Dentistry, B Dent, a prior university degree, any degree, was required before enrolling, and the course was four years. There is a new four-year course being introduced in 2012, also with the prior degree requirement. The degree will be Doctor of Dental Medicine, DMD and for students without government support, annual fees will be $51,000 for locals and $60,000 for overseas graduates. VERY OLD GRADUATES John Wherry is a Sydney Dental Faculty graduate of 1949. His wife of 60 years died recently, and your Compiler attended the very moving funeral, and also the later gathering with John at their home. Also present were Alan Campbell and Barry McInerney, distinguished-looking white- haired gentlemen in their late 80s, who were introduced to me as fellow Sydney graduates. What followed was a nostalgic conversation recalling times past. Shortly thereafter Barry excused himself, as he had to see a patient. Any reader who can emulate this is indeed fortunate, and certainly dedicated to his profession. SAFE4U This is the name of a spray bottle the size of a lipstick, and promoted as a 'toilet- seat sanitizer', which makes 'public toilets 99.9% germ-free'. It was advertised thus in the 6 June 2011 Sydney Morning Herald, and showed a woman squeezing her hands between her thighs in a clear representation of someone needing access to a toilet. The implication of the advertisement is that toilet seats are covered in germs, and you should first kill these germs before sitting thereon. The logic of this is indefensible. First, urine is nearly always a sterile fluid, and a spray is not going to kill the germs in any solid contamination. The latter would be obvious anyway, and the user would be better employed covering the seat with toilet paper before sitting. Secondly, any germs transferred from seat to buttocks are not going to cause any more harm than unavoidable hand- contamination through grasping a door handle, or picking up almost anything. A possible source of toilet seat trouble might be body lice, but the spray is unlikely to kill them expeditiously, and paper coverage will certainly help. But the real problem is the 99.9 per cent kill. The remaining 0.1 per cent, which the advertisement says will survive the SAFE4U, spray will multiply, and populate the seat with germs that laugh at the spray applied by the next SAFE4U user. It will not take many sprays of the seat to reach the point where all the germs on the seat survive, thus negating the claims of the spray. WATERLOGGED This is the title of an article written by Dr Laura Pearce, a Preventive Health
ADA News Bulletin November 2011
ADA News Bulletin February 2012