Aug 20, 2021
I hope you have all been enjoying the wonderful English summer and this one has certainly lived up to the reputation, throwing every kind of weather (other than snow and frost) at us in quick succession. Apologies that I have been so tardy with a news update. That task tends to fall to a Friday afternoon and I seem to have prioritised getting away in our camper or going for a walk/bike ride! I was a bit shocked to realise it was three months ago since I last communicated with you other than procedural updates. The summer months have definitely gone by quickly. I'm already noticing a slightly autumnal feel to the mornings...and people have started mentioning the 'C' word and how it will soon be here!!
I promised news about the remaining team members when we did the last newsletter but feel I must firstly get the baby news in.
Victoria and Craig welcomed their second daughter, Rosie Emma Hislop on July 22nd. Both Victoria and Rosie are doing well and little Sophie has taken to sisterhood like a duck to water.
With Victoria on maternity leave for the next year we desperately needed another team member on the reception/admin side and welcome Jo to the team in June.
‘Originally from the North, I moved to Salisbury 2 years ago with my husband and 2 little girls. We are really beginning to settle down and lay some roots, after 3 years living in the Channel Islands. We have recently bought our house, both of my children are settled at their schools and now I have a great new job to focus on. I’m feeling very lucky to be working with such a lovely team! It’s been such a tough year, so I’m really enjoying making the most of the extra freedom we have at the moment, and my weekends have usually been filled with trips to Paultons Park, visits to the beach and walking in the New Forest. I’m looking forward to some trips away in our camper van soon, there are so many amazing places to visit on our doorstep. When we haven’t been clocking up the miles road tripping, we’ve really enjoyed some quiet afternoons in the garden. My girls love nothing more than splashing around in the paddling pool or playing with the sand pit. My youngest daughter loves digging for worms and turning over bricks looking for bugs. She certainly didn’t inherit that from me!’
Long standing client will know Patricia from years ago. She worked with us from 2006 for 2017 when she retired. Obviosuly she missed us so much that she came back!
‘I had just started back at Gentle Dental working part time when lockdown happened. Until recently I have been working from home but I am now back in the practice one day a week. I’m really enjoying this as it is nice to actually be with the rest of the team and to see some of you face to face. I do enjoy home working as well though as I spend lot sof time making calls to you all and you all know how I love to chat! This also allows me to spend more time with my dogs, King Charles Spaniels. Sadly Dolly, one of my dogs passed away a few months ago so myself and the boys miss her terribly. However the gap is filled at times as I also look after my daughter’s dog Carlos (the very tired white one below) one day a week. They certainly keep me busy (and fit) when I’m not working for Gentle Dental.
Niamh and Rob
Rob and I have had an enjoyable summer. We have spent lots of weekends away in our camper walking and cycling; as well as spending time in the garden. There havve been many learning curves for a novice gardener!
As our project to revamp the front garden was done in the original lockdown it was a case of make do and recycle. I therefore decided to keep this theme going and have scavenged plants/cuttings from friends’ gardens so the flowerbed is eclectic to say the least. I seem to have spend the whole summer waiting for things to bloom. I suddenly realise why people go for bedding plants so this is on the ‘to do’ list for next year.
Ireland finally allowed travel and I have managed to go home several times to see my family now. So many people are still waiting to be able to visit family so I realise how fortunate I have been. My dad celebrated his 90th birthday in June and my parents 60th wedding anniversary was in July. The planned big family get together unfortunately couldn’t happen but we did manage a small gathering. BTW my parents garden is what I aspire to – as you can see, I have a long way to go!
Gentle Dental news
As any of you who have recently been in or contacted us to make an appointment will know, our diaries are currently very booked up. We just want to let you know that we are addressing the situation and are currently installing a 3rd treatment room, just down the corridor from the hygiene room. We are interviewing for a dentist or dental therapist to join the team and this will ease the situation in both Rob and my diary.
A dental therapist can do all of the hygiene work but can also do fillings. The plan would be to book simple fillings in his/her diary thus freeing up space in Robs for more complex treatment. I will not be dropping any of my clinical days but we hope to provide at least one extra day of hygiene each week which should make bookings easier.
Jessica who has been with us as a trainee for the last 6 months has decided dental nursing is not for her so has left us for pastures new.
Dental nurses are like gold dust at the moment and we are recruiting both qualified and trainees. In the interim we have got our long term locum Kat and Amanda who has worked as a locum with us in the past. This is topped up with agency when we cannot book them so apologies for different faces when you attend. We have just today taken on a trainee and a qualified nurse so hopefully they will become long term members of the team. To reassure those of you who prefer your appointment in my room without a nurse, I will be having the trainee in with me at times but only for note taking and cleaning/sterilisng training. I have worked on my own for too many years to change. I've tried it and didn't like it - old dog, new tricks and all that!
We want to say a big thank you to all of you for kindly wearing your masks when you attend. We have many vulnerable clients and for some this is the only place they have been since the initial lockdown started. Ensuring they feel relaxed and safe is important to us. We really apppreciated how kind and helpful you have all been about this.
Finally, we are continuing to work with the door locked and ‘ring the bell for entry’ system. Any of you who remember our entrance at the side many years ago will know that this is how we operated back then also. Many of our admin team have days in which they work from home answering calls and dealing with emails etc. Whilst this does mean the phones are well staffed it does make it very busy for the person physically in the building to deal with checking everyone in and out following appointments. Where possible if you do want to make appointments or discuss treatment options it would be a great help if you called or emailed. If the phone is not answered it means the team are tied up with other clients but if you leave a voicemail with your name and number they will call back as soon as they’re free. Thank you in advance for your help with this.
Here’s hoping for a sunny end to August and an Indian summer for September.
Keep well and safe.
Niamh, Rob and the Gentle Dental team