See you again soon…

Had a great start to the bank holiday weekend yesterday after my beloved Manchester United scored a winning goal after the final whistle. Football fans used to call that ‘Fergie time’ after our previous influential manager – as we would so often score in the dying minutes of the game; but yesterday took Fergie time to a whole new level. I felt sorry for the opposing team but you know what they say, …”it’s not over until it’s over – but even then it’s still not over as we might still score again..” – or something along those lines. 😏

After a nice long walk in the park we came back home to a family film night – watching ‘Horton hears a Who’ on Disney +:

Don’t Mila’s eye’s look like the πŸ‘€ emoji? πŸ˜†

Even Fergie got his fair share of the popcorn! (That’s our dog btw, unfortunately Sir Alex himself couldn’t make it for Horton hears a who.)

Raashi and I watched ‘The Social Dilemma’ after this and I would encourage you to give it a go. It’s on Netflix but be prepared to delete all of your social media app’s & notifications after it! (Except of-course if you read or write a blog)

‘The Gentleman’ will be up next on our bank holiday movie binge list. We went to see that in the cinema but it’s probably one of my favourite ever films so if you’ve not seen it yet I would definitely recommend you do. Given the local lockdown rules we’ll probably need a new series soon so if you have any suggestions please fire them my way – we’ve ticked off Suits, Breaking Bad, & Selling Sunset ☺️ already.

At work this week I’m hoping to hear a bit more about what treatments might start to be allowed on the NHS again. You’ve probably read in the news that there have been a lot of restrictions up to now on the type of care we can offer. It’s all down to the aerosols that are produced when we use our drills. These tiny droplets are mainly composed of water from our hand-pieces/drills, but mixed with saliva this can theoretically cause a risk to staff. (Remember the saliva is from the patient and if they are Covid positive already this is when there is a theoretical risk for our staff)

Just to be safe we’ve had to invest in different PPE and leave the surgeries empty for a while after aerosol procedures before carrying out our normal decontamination protocol. We’re also screening all patients before and again on arrival so the risk of us seeing an asymptomatic Covid patient is small.

The NHS can’t provide us with all the PPE required to carry on with all types of routine care so that’s why some treatments are available on the NHS at the moment and all treatments are available privately.

I hope that helps explain the current situation for dentistry a bit better although as everything seems to change so quickly that might well be old news by next week!

I’m currently on medical leave (getting a planned operation next week) and will be off work until at least the middle of November so i’ll be taking a break on the blog front too. I managed to see most of my patients for urgent care up to last week so that was great to be able to finish some things off – I’m sorry if I missed anyone.

Our dentists Laura, Kamal and Mr Chan are taking over all patient care for the moment so if you need an appointment please just call us and of-course our whole team will keep everyone updated on any government changes to the provision of dental care.

I look forward to seeing our staff and patients again on my return.

Have a good bank holiday everyone and take care,

Joe

Joseph Watson BDS MFDS RCPS MSc (Implantology)

haPPE

Had a very busy week this week as we’re now back to offering a full range of services. There are still some restrictions on what treatment can be offered on the NHS at the moment but our team will be able to talk you through all the options either on the phone, by email or of course in person at your appointment.

We’re all getting well used to the extra PPE now too. It’s not actually that much different for us as we’re obviously used to it in our line of work, but we’ve got different masks and gowns for any aerosol generating procedures (using the drills and scalers) now. This is Tiegan & I getting all set up for a dental implant procedure during the week:

For dental implants it’s not too different than pre covid to be honest but you will notice that any time we do any of the aerosol type procedures we have to spend a bit of time getting ‘dressed up’ like this in our gowns, masks and visors. Mr Chan’s patients will have noticed he sometimes looks more like an astronaut with all his PPE on πŸ˜†.

Spending most of the day in the additional PPE get’s a bit hot too but thankfully all the surgeries have big windows now and we’ve even got air purifiers in every room, including the reception/waiting area.

Our current patients will remember our last place where the surgeries were very small with no windows, so that would have been much more difficult for us to work and to be honest we wouldn’t have been able/allowed to carry out the aerosol procedures at all. What a time to move in the end!

Fingers crossed for a vaccine some time soon so we can all get back to normal. The Russians say they have one already but ironically they seem to be ‘russian’ it through the approval process. I’m ‘haPPE’ to stick with the additional kit for the time being.

Have a good week everyone,

Joe

Joseph Watson BDS MFDS RCPS MSc (Implantology)

On the hunt for new chips

Just finished my sit up and squat challenge for today. My brother Nathan challenged our whole family to 100 sit ups and 100 squats per day for the month of September. I’ve only missed one day so far, but did double the following day to make up for it. I had hoped to see a 6 pack by now but maybe that was a little ambitious. Guess I’ll have to give up takeaways for that, but with the new coronavirus restrictions announced I really can’t see that happening now. Salt and chilli chips have just became even more important, so I’d keep them and settle for a 1 pack to be honest.

We had a Chinese takeaway on Friday night and the past couple of times I thought I’d noticed an ever so slight variation to their salt and chilli chip recipe. I jokingly said to Raashi that the chef must have been on holiday but we got a leaflet with Friday’s order to say there’s been a change in management. It’s heartbreaking as it took me years to find that one, and sadly the new one just isn’t as good so I’m now on the hunt for a new salt and chilli chip vendor. Any recommendations please let me know. (Sadly we don’t stay close enough to Stan’s)

Bit of a quiet/lazy afternoon for us for the rest of the day. Even Fergie didn’t fancy a walk earlier:

Just don’t poo in the pram Fergs, not without a nappy on anyway.

I was reading today that there may be a risk of another national lockdown, really hope it doesn’t come to that. I’m sure we’ve all been enjoying being back to some form of normality recently. I know we have at our work, and we’re all back to our normal shifts and opening times. Our therapist Rebecca is back doing scaling and polishing too so I’m desperate to get booked in with her myself at some point, going to need all the staining from salt and chilli chip sampling blasted away!

Have a good week everyone,

Joe

Joseph Watson BDS MFDS RCPS MSc (Implantology)

9 years first class service

Lovely day today spent going for a nice walk in the sun then out for a delicious Sunday roast in Milngavie.

My younger brother Jordan is over for a visit and some babysitting – literally taking some weight off my shoulders

Someone sent me this photo during the week and I don’t know if this is true for all families but it certainly is for us:

My mum calls me ‘the golden child’ ☺️ and of my 3 younger brothers Jordan is definitely the most similar to the second monkey πŸ˜‚

It’s also true for my own first and second daughters.

Child number 2 Sienna seems to be growing more hair in the exact same place I seem to be losing it – must be all that hanging upside down from branches!

Im assuming our family isn’t alone on the first and second child monkey rule?

Our work family is a little different of-course and it’s only really on the Christmas night out that the second monkey might come out πŸ˜†. We’ve all taken our turn at that to be fair. This year it might be a little different as im not sure Christmas nights out will go ahead? Next year our team may look a little different too as some of our staff are moving on to the next phase of their career.

Just before lockdown our nurse & marketing manager Gemma told me that she had been accepted to train to be a hospital nurse from this month. More recently our senior nurse Danielle also got accepted to move into an oral health support role for NHS Scotland.

It’s a bitter sweet feeling as I’m so happy for & proud of both of them to be furthering their careers. At the same time I’m also gutted to be losing two amazing nurses and even more so two lovely, fun, bubbly people who are integral members of our team. I know all of our patients & the rest of our staff will be as sad (but happy) as I am to see them move on.

Thank you both for the first class service over the past 9 years, and all the very best of luck in the next stage of your careers ❀️ ☘️

Thankfully they’ll both still be with us for a while on a part time basis – which should guarantee them their testimonial match (one for the football fans 😝)

Have a good week everyone,

Joe

Joseph Watson BDS MFDS RCPS MSc (Implantology)

5 πŸ–πŸΌ

Celebrating our 5th wedding anniversary today which apparently is the ‘wooden’ year. I can think of some other words to describe this year but we’ll ‘stick’ with that I suppose !πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ I got Raashi a wooden chess set as a gift and so far she’s 2-0 up. I’ve never actually played chess before though so I’m hoping to claw it back after a few youtube videos.

We went out for dinner last night too which was really nice.

Raashi went for the chopsticks and I just went for the big spoon

The restaurant was really nice and you could tell they had removed a lot of tables so they seemed to be running at around half capacity. The atmosphere was still good though and all the staff were wearing masks and spraying down the tables as soon as someone left. We felt comfortable knowing that they were taking as many precautions as they could, while still trying to get their own business going again.

It’s such a strange time and I think it seems clear that it will be like this for a while for all industries. We’re in the same boat of not being able to run at full capacity ourselves but we’re also doing our best to accommodate all of our patients needs. We’ve taken every possible precaution to keep people safe – this week we even invested in air purifiers for every room. They’re linked to an app so we can check how clean the air in the room is before even going in!

Not much planned for the rest of the day for us except maybe a dog walk and a chess lesson from Raashi ☹️. She never actually got me a gift so you would think she ‘wood’ let me win a game. 😜

Have a good week everyone,

Joe

Joseph Watson BDS MFDS RCPS MSc (Implantology)

Fancy a swim? 🏊

We were back to our normal rota at work this week after an initial period of opening just 1 surgery per day. It was a good week and we’re in the really fortunate position of having a much bigger place now to accommodate us all and allow us to follow the social distancing guidelines even at lunch time. Few patients will have seen our old staff room but it was just about big enough for 2 people and maybe 1 pot noodle!

In contrast, when a lot of dentists re-opened on the 23rd June we were in the unfortunate position of not being able to open as our new premises inspections were delayed and our lease had ran out on our old premises. I spent a lot of time during this period rueing our bad luck at the date of our relocation, which took 3 years of planning and preparation.

It dawned on me this week though just how good the timing turned out to be. At the moment it’s not possible to carry out the aerosol type procedures (using drills, scalers) in surgeries with no windows or mechanical ventilation. Our patients will remember our previous surgeries were tiny with no windows. At the time it never really bothered me as if it was a really nice day outside we were usually none the wiser.

You can imagine now though we’d be limited in terms of what we could do if we were still there and now I’m thinking we couldn’t have picked a better time to move. Our new surgeries are huge and they all have big windows with plenty of fresh airflow. We’ve even got an extra surgery now so it allows us to move around while rooms are being thoroughly disinfected after aerosol procedures. Hopefully as time goes on we won’t need all the extra precautions but we’re lucky to have the facilities now to allow us to move around like this which will help reduce waiting times for our patients.

One of whom travelled all the way up from London to see us for his Invisalign treatment this week. Barry is from Bishopbriggs but works in London now and he recently managed to complete an English channel swim for charity. I can’t swim the length of myself so I was really impressed to hear he swam from England to France in 12 hours – one way to avoid the travel restrictions I suppose!

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is img_1443.jpg
Fantastic achievement Barry!

He’s raised nearly Β£5k for a spinal injury charity so we were delighted to help out with that and donate our monthly community fund of Β£100 to the charity – link here for anyone else who is able and willing to add to it:

Well done again Barry and have a good week everyone,

Joe

Joseph Watson BDS MFDS RCPS MSc (Implantology)

Free Lunch!

This week I’ve absolutely made the most of the ‘eat out to help out’ scheme. First of all we had a team meeting on Monday at work so we all had a McDonalds lunch. Obviously.

I was then off work on Wednesday so after dropping the kids to nursery Raashi and I went to a cafe for breakfast. She did warn me not to eat too much as we also had lunch booked at Partick Duck Club, but I ignored her advice and went for the pancakes, bacon and maple syrup stack.πŸ˜‹

When we were leaving the house for lunch I remember thinking I should have listened to Raashi, but by the time we got there I was good to go again. Must have burned a few calories on the drive in πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ It was delicious but there was just one problem, I ordered chips with aioli sauce, assuming it was garlic, but it was ‘truffle’ (mushroom) flavour! For anyone who like me doesn’t like mushrooms, you can imagine how disappointed I was to have that feint mushroom taste lingering with every chip 🀒 (yes I still ate them all!)

Finally to top off our discount dining day on Wednesday, we had dinner at Ka Pao in the West End with some friends. It was delicious and thankfully mushroom free. They say there’s no such thing as a free lunch but if Raashi pays half and Rishi gets the other half that’s free for me πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™‚οΈπŸ˜†

As part of our phase in plan, from tomorrow we’re opening up another surgery at work. There are still some limitations on what treatment can be carried out on the NHS at the moment and for some things we may have to refer out to the dental hubs. We’ve been working through a backlog of lockdown emergencies and carrying out some treatments that we can do, we’re now even booking scale and polishing visits for the next few weeks. I was also delighted to finally finish treatment for my patient Mr Munro this week:

Socially distant selfies!

3 years ago I first fitted Mr Munro’s top set of dental implants. He later decided to go for the bottom set too but the day we were due to fit his teeth was at the start of lockdown. It was so good to finally screw the bottom set in and I was delighted to hear he’s now eating nuts and steaks for the first time in years. It was a bit of a shame we couldn’t shake hands but we settled for the elbow bump!

We’ve got so many patients like Mr Munro who were near the end or even mid way through treatment and where possible we’ll be doing our best to finish things off. All treatments can still be carried out outwith the NHS but you may notice a bit more PPE than normal. So it might be new digs, new masks and gowns but we’re still the same old team underneath!

Have a good week everyone,

Joe

Joseph Watson BDS MFDS RCPS MSc (Implantology)

WE ARE OPEN!

It’s taken a long time to get to this point so it’s a huge relief for us to finally open our new practice. Planning started in early 2017 when I first dropped off a few letters to properties along Springburn and Kirkintilloch road that I thought had the potential to become a dental practice. Ann and Jim (the previous owners of our new property) kindly replied to me, along with a few others too. Unfortunately Ann & Jim’s property wasn’t available immediately so we did check a few others and even had planning permission accepted for one.

In the end Ann and Jim’s property was always the most suitable and thankfully it became an option again last year. It took a while to get the planning permission accepted, building warrant in place, sale completed and of-course renovate a beautiful family home into a dental practice. Oh and don’t forget about dealing with a pandemic and national lockdown in between!

Jim had actually lived in the house for 51 years before we bought it! Interestingly though Ann was actually inside before him as she was friends with the previous owners kids. I found out later that we had some competition from the supermarket next door to buy it so I’m glad they held on and sold to us instead. Sorry not sorry Farmfoods!

After so long living there Ann & Jim mentioned to me that they were happy they are the last family to live in it as a home. We had them both up to do the official opening on Saturday morning so it was great to give them the first tour of their old home & now our new one:

Opened at last almost 5 years to the day that we took over the previous place!
Lovely wee message from Ann afterwards 😊

It was strange getting back to work again, especially in new environment and with a slightly different way of working but it was really nice to see some patients again.

The work selfies are back in business!

Looking forward to welcoming everyone to the new place, we’re open tomorrow at 9am although please only attend if you have an appointment. Still accepting new patients at the moment however priority will be given to our current patients and especially those who have called with issues during lockdown. We’ll contact patients from our priority lists although please feel free to contact us too, by phone or email.

Have a nice weekend all,

Joe

Joseph Watson BDS MFDS RCPS MSc (Implantology)

Open next week! 🀞🏼

Last week I enjoyed my first visit to the pub since February with a few friends. You may have noticed I took a week off from writing my blog too – purely co-incidental 😏

I was actually quite impressed with our local pub to be honest. They’d removed more than half of their tables, had a 1 way system to and from the toilet, hand sanitiser stations, screens and signage were up and you had to order and pay for drinks on an app which were then delivered to the table. I felt quite comfortable and of-course it was great to have the first real pint in 5 months (I’m obviously not counting all those fake ones I’ve had in the house during lockdown.)

We moved on to a restaurant for dinner but it was a bit of a different story there. The staff had visors on, some of them wore gloves, although it was honestly packed more than I’ve ever seen it. Each table had a small plastic screen at one end but it seemed to me that they were trying to appear to make the effort rather than actually being sensible about it. We still stayed for dinner although I was a bit disappointed. Dinner was really nice to be fair but I wouldn’t feel comfortable going back there unless the seating arrangements were altered, which is a shame for the restaurant in the long term if a lot of other people feel the same way.

I really appreciate when I go to a shop and everyone has a face covering on, hand sanitiser is in place and people are respecting the social distance when queuing or passing each other. It’s sensible and necessary if we’re going to get business going again safely and prevent another peak/lockdown.

Our own business is now ready to open next week (pending a pass on our inspection on Wednesday) and we’ve taken a host of precautions to keep our patients and staff safe:

  1. Everyone will have a Covid screening prior to entering.
  2. Our door will be locked as we will be limited to appointment only at the moment, sorry that means no ‘walk in’s’ for now.
  3. Some patients may be asked to wait in cars until your appointment time.
  4. We have extra hand sanitising stations on entry and exit.
  5. Our medical history and consent forms will now be completed by text message prior to your appointment so no more signing forms or signature pads on entry.
  6. Patient and staff numbers will be limited so we don’t have too many people in the building at once.
  7. We’ll be limiting the treatments we provide initially.
  8. Our staff PPE might be a little different from what you remember:
Raashi absolutely loving her fit test – thankfully the yellow bit isn’t part of the PPE πŸ˜†

☝🏼The ‘fit-testing’ is about finding out which type of masks fits best for each of our staff. The test itself is not fun at all though. A truly awful scent is puffed into the yellow hood for 7 minutes and pass or fail the test you experience the taste. Bogging, humming, barking, rank, reeking, rotten. Take your pick. It’s all of the above and I can still taste it 2 days later.

Last few days to finish up the DIY (I’m just making tea for the plasterer) at home then it’s BACK TO WORK!! Buzzing. 🐝 😁

(p.s. unfortunately we can’t make any appointments until we pass our inspection – we’ll update on Wednesday how it goes 🀞🏼)

Have a good week everyone,

Joe

Joseph Watson BDS MFDS RCPS MSc (Implantology)

Wall ideas welcome!

Unfortunately our planned opening date of 15th July has been delayed and we’re now aiming for the 27th. It’s frustrating as we’re excited to open but we’re having some trouble getting inspections organised. I was going a bit bald on top anyway but that seems to have accelerated lately, fingers crossed it’s all sorted for the end of the month before I go complete spit shine!

We’re still able to help our patients with advice on the phone and onward referral if necessary. We’ve also been meeting quite a few patients outside the new practice to hand out temporary filling kits and cements so if you need any please give us a call.

I’ve enjoyed just chatting to our patients on the phone too as with being in the house & social distancing for so long it’s nice to talk to someone new. I spent 42mins on the phone to our patient Mr B. on Friday, 78 years old and he’s been isolating alone for the past 4 months; barely having left the house at all. We were chatting about how he bought his first flat for Β£800, (a month’s rent now!) and how he remembers food rationing after the war. Really interesting talking about it as not many of us will have experience of things like that. The current fight against Covid will likely be the most significant event in our lifetimes so far, so I guess in a sense we’re lucky that all we’ve had rationed is our toilet roll for a short time!

I’m looking forward to seeing Mr B again in person and because of his age and medical history we’ll be taking extra precautions to make his journey with us as safe as possible. For example our staff will all be screened daily, we’ll have extra PPE, hand sanitising stations, all our surfaces will be wiped down regularly and our appointments will be scheduled so that Mr B doesn’t come into contact with any other patients.

Rest assured we’ll be taking universal precautions like this for everyone so in my opinion coming to see us will be safer than any supermarket or beer garden.

I’m actually looking for a bit of inspiration for our own back garden at work. We’d like some sort of artwork on this back wall – a bottle of champagne to whoever comes up with an idea that we use:

Just the 1 interesting suggestion from my younger brother Jordan atm so I’m open to hearing a few ‘more PC’ ideas πŸ˜†

A couple more weeks of ‘working from home’ for me then before I pass that mantle on to my little shadow:

Currently on furlough at 80% of her usual milk πŸ˜†

Have a good week everyone and hope to see you soon,

Joe

Joseph Watson BDS MFDS RCPS MSc (Implantology)