Being a compassionate person at heart, I was inclined towards social work since my school days. So naturally I was inclined to do some good when I was studying to be a dentist. So in the rather drab subject of Community Dentistry which most of students hated well I found some interest on Public Dental Health services, recordings for case studies, Indices and Epidemiology. There I learnt that the delivery of health services and primary care was very difficult in a vast and diverse country as India. Epidemiology and diagnosis of diseases like AIDS, tobacco cessation program, Dental health education were interesting.
I even made a project in my third year on oral manifestations of HIV. The project was a hard copy of pictures and slides that explained the various routes of transmission of HIV, difference between HIV and AIDS, what are the early signs and symptoms of HIV, and how to prevent spread of this infection, in a manner easily understandable by a layman. While many people have started using this and showed improvement, I constantly wonder about performing such techniques on a bigger scale – something that will make it possible.
India and especially South Asia has a great population who are in influence of chewing Tobacco and Smoking. They have led to losses socially, economically, functionally, psychologically and of life in our society. During my training in dental school I came to realize that number of tobacco users are much more in my state. And they have to suffer a lot because of this habit from diseases like cancer at very early age. Already quality of health is poor and because of such habit people made it more worst.
This inspired me to attend a special training workshop for tobacco cessation counseling by Tobacco Intervention Initiatives (TII). My extensive knowledge on pre-cancerous lesions proved to be extremely helpful at the time of implementation of the training at related campaigns. And I already used this knowledge during my internship to aware people about harmful effects of tobacco and helped them to quite their habit. It made me realise that we needed greater skills of Management and organization in our Society and this was a major hurdle in our Health Care system.