Known to friends and colleagues as The FMR Guy, Dr Devang Patel is considered an authority on the science of full mouth rehabilitation, whose courses and lectures have helped hundreds of clinicians get to grips with complex treatment.

In this week’s episode, Devang chats with Prav about how it all started, recalling his unorthodox entry into dental school in India and a reluctant move to the UK.

He gives his thoughts on what it takes to rise to the to provide full-mouth rehabilitation, gives advice for those just getting started, and reveals why even the fantasy kind of dinner party is an engagement he would rather avoid.



In This Episode

01.55 – Implementation and execution

04.37 – Backstory

17.13 – University

28.26 – London and first work

37.06 – Holidays, time off 

41.16 – Motivation, MSc and marriage

50.25 – Teaching, practice ownership and career development

59.39 – Delivering FMR and training

01.12.12 – Last days and legacy

01.20.37 – Fantasy dinner party


About Devang Patel

Dev graduated in 2004 and completed a one-year full-time MSc at Eastman Dental Institute, where he was awarded a distinction and the postgraduate prize for clinical and academic excellence.

He is an honorary senior clinical teaching fellow at UCL Eastman Dental Institute and has served as a deputy examiner for the GDC’s Overseas Registration exam.

Devang now provides training to fellow clinicians on full-mouth rehabilitation.

Learn very methodically. So the way I’ve created a program where I have my my book, as you know, full mouth reconstruction for GDPs is one of the best seller. So the book is there for people who just don’t know what full mouth reconstruction is and just want to understand how I work. But the course, the way it works is I’ve recorded everything online. So all the lectures, all the practical demonstration is there online. They do a online course. First, they watch all the videos and everything. Then they come for six days, training, three weekends broken down, different three weekends. And I teach them exactly how the full mouth reconstruction, all the steps, the three steps. And I teach them those three steps. The beauty is I don’t give any demonstration because everything is recorded online. So when they come in, they literally start doing practical work. And when they make mistake, I then show them how to improve on them because I’ve been on so many courses myself where the, you know, the lecturer or the the the teacher gives demonstration and you’re like, Wow, this is amazing. And then when you start doing it, you can’t implement it. It’s like, you know, you, you see the demonstration of the toy or something and why the toy and you come bring home and you can’t really replicate what the guy was doing. And that’s where I feel that it’s a waste of time. Me giving demonstration. I would rather people use that time in practising, practising, practising and figure out what makes it work.

This is Dental Leaders the podcast where you get to go one on one with emerging leaders in dentistry. Your hosts, Payman, Langroudi and Prav Solanki.

It gives me great pleasure to welcome Dr. Devang Patel to the Dental Leaders Podcast. Devang. I’ve known for quite a while now. He came on to my feed as a geeky looking Indian guy who sort of pitched himself as the full mouth reconstruction guy or the fMRI guy. And I thought, Who is this guy? Right. And then, um, I could see he was lecturing in front of, you know, a big audience on a big stage and running these courses. And I think Devang you reached out to me at some point and asked for asked for some help on, on, on. I can’t remember what it was at the time and we connected and Devang one one thing that was very clear to me is that aside from everything else, like just it sounds very sounds very cheesy, right? But your passion, your intense passion not only for full mouth reconstruction, but your passion for your delegates to implement and execute what you teach them. Right. That was very clear to me. I speak to hundreds, of course, providers and I meet lots of lecturers and they, you know, they do their thing and they walk away and whatnot. And I think one big difference that I learned from you, Dev, is that for you, it’s more about it’s more about implementation and execution.

And you want your delegates to go from single tooth dentistry to full mouth reconstruction or being able to do full mouth reconstruction and start delivering it. I remember why you reached out to me now. Devang and it was it was to put on a specific course for your delegates and, and actually what was what was really interesting when you reached out to me was this you said, Hey, Prav, I want you to put on a communication course for my delegates and I want you to teach them how to sell full mouth reconstruction dentistry. But I’m going to pay for it. Yeah. Yeah. Um, because the fee that I charged you and the fee that you took from your delegates, there was a shortfall. And you said to me, I’m going to take the hit on this prof because it’s really important that they can sell the clinical skills that I’ve taught them. Right? And that’s when it became really clear to me that you’re so passionate about the delegates who come on your course that they can implement and execute to the point where you’re happy to take a hit and lose money in order for that to happen anyway. Devang Welcome to the Dental Leaders podcast. That was a bit of a long introduction.

Thank you.

But, but it was just a foray into, well, how we met, right?

Thank you for inviting me. I’m really grateful.

It’s a pleasure. Devang And on this podcast, I’m sure we’ll come back to talk about full mouth reconstruction and and your teaching and all the rest of it. But I want us to take a step back to your childhood. I want to learn about where you grew up, what kind of a kid you were. Were you always that geeky kid, amazing at exams and all the rest of it? Just just tell me about what was your childhood like?

Uh, my childhood was really amazing. I mean, I am very normal guy. Like, I. I can’t really, you know, I had an amazing childhood. Um, I had always looked at the positives. Well, everyone loved me, and that could be because when I was three, unfortunately, my father died in a car accident and we lived in a joint family. So my grandfather became kind of my father.

Where was this divine? Was this was this in India or.

Yes, in India. So I grew up in India, a small town called Mehsana in Gujarat. And my grandfather was the first GP in the town when the town was there. And kind of everyone knew, everyone knew him. So we had to kind of behave whenever we go because everyone knew who we were. So you can’t do any mischief. So otherwise my grandfather would know, know about it. So we like even if you go out to eat because my grandfather keep telling everyone not to go out and eat and we go out. So we had to be very careful. Um, so yeah, I had a very lovely childhood. I lived in a joint family with my uncle, aunt, my grandfather, grand mum, my mum, my brother. I have a older brother who is also a GP in India. And yeah, it was, as I said, it was, it was really lovely. Everyone, even though some people who didn’t get along with each other, they, they loved me. So I had no hate whatsoever at all when I was young.

Growing up as a kid. Yeah. Do you remember your dad?

No, I don’t. I mean, I just remember just one memory when he was holding me. But no, I don’t remember much. And I guess maybe because I was so young to compensate. For my loss. Everyone, you know, made sure that they look after me. But yeah, I mean, I when I was a kid, I didn’t ask for anything. To be honest, I just whatever I got, I was very happy with that. Um, and whatever I didn’t have, I just make do with that.

And so it was your mum and your grandfather that essentially brought you up, right?

And my uncle, my aunt, like everyone literally, but my grandfather was an still until he was alive. Even now he’s not. But still he’s helping me and guiding me in a way.

Okay. And then and then. So in terms of your childhood, what was it like in India? Just sort of talk to me about the day to day, the mischief you used to get up to or not get up to because you were scared of scared of people telling you I.

Was a straight I was a very straight kid. I used to go to school, you know, come back and study. I did have many friends. My mum tells me a story where I called my friend to my house and he’s like, Look, give me this toy. Otherwise I’m not going to be your friend. And I basically took his hand and I threw him out out of the house. So I was pretty independent from from the beginning. I did all my school work and everything, and I was actually telling my son that no one actually asked me to do homework. I don’t remember. And my mum doesn’t remember, even as young as I was like 4 or 5, six years old, no one had to help me with the homework. I would do it myself. If I don’t know, I would ask. And you know, so I was quite independent from the beginning. I did become dependent when I was seven years old. I’ve suffered from something called Goldenberg syndrome. So it’s a viral infection where you get paralysed. So I was completely paralysed, neck down.

At what age?

Seven, seven, eight. Yeah. So my grandfather used to carry me and they kind of lost hope that I would walk again. Um, but then my grandfather really believed in me and, you know, really worked hard into getting different opinions. So we used to travel two hours every week to see a specialist and then see six months of rehab. And yeah, I was, I was I was back on my feet and slowly sort of recovering. But yeah, even then I just see everyone helping me, loving me. So, you know, it was again, even though it was a adversity, I see it as a opportunity for me to connect with my family.

So do you have any memories of the Guillain-Barre syndrome? Were you getting do you remember like getting the tingling sensations in your fingers and stuff like that?

Yeah. So I it started when I went on a summer holiday to my mother’s side, my mama’s side. So we went there and I remember the swing was swinging and all of a sudden it hit me on my knee because I could not move. And then literally within a few days I was paralysed. So it was quite, quite rapid. Yeah, quite quick. But then with schools and everything, because my grandfather knew the school people, they supplied with the materials. So we did like a study at home and then, yeah, six, six it was 6 to 7 months and I was back on the school.

So you were so you were paralysed from the neck down, you couldn’t move your hands, your legs, anything like, you know, day to day stuff going to the bathroom.

So my mom used to carry me, you know, so it was difficult. But I was young, so I guess I was lucky because there not that many people completely recover from it. So.

So how long were you paralysed for? How long did you. Seven, six months.

7 to 8 months?

Yeah, 7 to 8 months. Okay. And then from there onwards, tell me, did you grow up in a family that was quite well off and fortunate? Were you were you were you struggling again?

No. I mean, again, my childhood is a really good we we were we were well off in the sense that but we lived very well below our means. My grandfather helped his brothers with all the all the things, you know, money wise and everything. We didn’t live lavishly at all to the point that I didn’t use to get birthday gifts. My birthday gifts used to be my grandfather used to get me ice cream, so we used to just have ice cream. There is no cake cutting until I was 13, 14. And then the thing started, you know, you cut the cake and stuff. So, you know, even now, I don’t expect any birthday gifts or anything. I don’t really celebrate birthday that big. I mean, I was 40 last year. We didn’t do much because I believe in sort of day to day enjoyment rather than just pick one day and then go all out.

Live every day to to the. Yeah. So. So. So. Curiosity. You don’t you don’t get birthday gifts and you don’t believe in them. How old’s your son?

He is nine. He gets three birthday gifts, sometimes four. Okay.

So you haven’t carried you haven’t carried on that tradition, then?

No, unfortunately, I’m weak parent.

That’s not weak, mate. That’s not weak. That’s not weak.

Yeah. So, no, he gets he gets four four gifts for the Christmas and but they are little again, he is a very amazing kid. He doesn’t expect much. So small gifts, nothing too too big or too expensive. But it’s just the number, what counts. But yeah, so with regards to the school’s pretty strict. I was in a state school. Nothing expensive. My. My yearly yearly expense for the school was in pounds. It was probably £6 for a year. So and that was just the examination fees. That’s it. And probably the school, the school clothes and stuff like that. So nothing, nothing very expensive.

So fast forward throughout your academic career and stuff. At what point did you think to yourself, I want to be a dentist? Or was it a foregone conclusion that because coming from a medical background you had no choice? So.

Mean because my again, I was we were very well known family in the town. My teacher used to call me doctor even when I was nine years, ninth standard and 10th Standard. They used to call me doctor. So it was kind of ingrained in our brain that, you know, you’re going to become a doctor. And when I finished my year A-level equivalent in India, I had 87% in maths and science sciences, but I couldn’t get seats in in medical or dentistry.

Did you apply for both?

Yeah, I applied for both.

So what? Why did you apply for both and what’s the system there? Did you. Could you. Could you. Yeah, you could. What did you want?

You could. I wanted to go into medicine because I didn’t know any better, to be honest. That’s the only thing. I mean, I’m unlike my son. I had no aspiration. Like, I’m going to grow old and I’m going to become this person or whatever. I was just going with the flow. And I remember it was 87%, but I didn’t get into medicine and then dentistry. So then the option were either become going to engineering or in India there are legitimate seats where you pay. It’s called donation. So you pay like a charity or something to the college and they give you that seat. So it was that option. So my grandfather, I remember very clearly, my grandfather and I was sitting in the sitting room and he he asked me like, look, he’s like, we’ll pay for whatever you want to become. If you want to become doctor, we’ll pay for that. And if you want to become dentist, we’ll pay for that. Or you can go and to become engineer and.

And that’s free.

That’s free because I had a percentage for that. So I didn’t want to become engineer, so I wanted to become either doctor or dentist. And I selected dentistry because the donation for the dentistry was one third of the medicine. And I said, Look, I don’t want you to pay so much money for me. So, you know, he’s like, Look, money’s not an issue. We’ll pay whatever you want. But I just had that that, you know, that my father is not making, you know, whatever I’m getting is a bonus in my life. So I didn’t want to burden anyone. So I said, okay, you know what? Just pay for the dentistry and I’ll be fine. So that’s how I went into dentistry by kind of a legal bribe.

A legal bribe. And the reason you chose dentistry over medicine was the price point. It was nothing to do with your aspirations of transforming patients smiles or doing teeth or dentists earn more than doctors. No, nothing like that.

It just purely other medicine, dentistry. Dentists are cheaper than medicine. So I said, okay, let’s do dentistry. And then obviously you ask people and you try and find benefits, right? So I remember my grandfather used to do on call, so people used to come to our house. He had a small clinic in our house. So like 12:00 at midnight, 2:00, 3:00. And my grandfather used to wake up and, you know, do that. My uncle’s a gynaecologist. So again, he used to be on call. He used to wake up middle of the night and someone said, Oh, you don’t have to do that. It’s 9 to 5 dentistry. You know, you you go 9:00 and come back 5:00 and there is nothing else afterwards, which is completely untrue, by the way.

But it is it is in your world, that’s for sure.

In my world, yeah. Yesterday was 12:00. I was working. But, you know, it’s not.

Not lunch time, right?

Not lunch time. It’s a midnight. 12:00. Yes, but. But that was. And they said, okay, that’s the thing. So we went and the seat I got was 20, 24 hour travel time from my house. So it was in a different state, but there was no trains or plane, so it was by bus and it would take me 24 hours to go to that university.

To get there. Before we talk a bit more about university, I just want to learn a bit more about this legal bribe. It is.

Definitely illegal.

Yeah, no, I’m sure it’s I’m sure it’s legal. But you said they have these seats, right? And so typically, how many seats are we talking?

Probably if there is, let’s say dentistry has 80 seats in total. Yeah, probably four seats are like that.

Okay. So we got four seats and they go out. Do they go out to the highest bidder or is it there a fixed price? How does it.

Work? No, they just say whatever they want. And it’s a lot of factors apart from just money. Like you have to know people. But generally money is the main thing.

So is the fact that your grandfather was a well known person. He was a doctor. Does he have any influence in that?

No, because the seat I got was in Maharashtra. And the the reason they got me that seat is it was a remote town where there was nothing else to do. So they’re like, You’ll study here. If we put you in city, you’re not going to study. So they put me in like a remote town where there was like, nothing. Literally no cinema. There was only two restaurants to eat outside. That’s it. No cinema, you know, Very remote. Very remote.

Wow. And so I asked you, you know, does it go up to the highest bidder? And you say, no. They say whatever they want. What do you mean? Like is there So.

There is a there is a price. So everyone knows that this universe. But when you go there, they will tell you that this is a mount, but it’s not fixed. Like you have to take it in maybe, let’s say a week or ten, ten days, otherwise they can give it to someone else. Yeah. Or they can raise the price depending on what they feel like.

But generally just the way the wind blows. I mean, what do you mean, what they feel like?

It can just. It just can go up. It doesn’t they don’t do that very often. Generally, we know what’s the fees?

How much how much are we talking How much we’re talking though?

Uh, at the time it was seven lakh rupees, so I don’t know, £7,000.

Is that per year or for the whole program?

No, that was just to get the seat. And then the program was £5,500 a month and then a year. And then that went up to year after year like £100 more. So at the last year was £1,000.

Okay. So £500 for a year. £600 for a year to £700 for year three. So and so on and so forth. Right. And, and so if there’s only four places and I come along and say, hey, I want to pay, um, you know, £1,000 more than this next guy. Would I get your place?

Probably. But generally, once they give you a place, they don’t take it away, if that makes sense. So in that case, that sense, they are good. So once they commit to it, they won’t like they won’t say, Oh no, you gone.

Okay. So my next question is, you’re one of four kids in a team of 80. Yeah. Yeah. Who paid your way in? You didn’t earn your place, right? Yeah. You know, I’m being a bit thingy here, but. But you didn’t earn your place in dental school through academia or whatever. You paid your way in? Yes. How did that manifest itself in the. In the group? Right. With 76 kids looking at you, Four guys as the. Hey, the rich guys who paid their self in or anything like that?

No, it’s pretty accepting. People are very accepting. There was there was nothing like that because there was remember, there’s other things like in India, there is a caste system as well. So we had someone who had only scored 35%, came as a free seat because he was from a quota. So there are quota depending on what caste you are. Yeah. So, you know, it depends. So it’s pretty accepted.

Okay, so, so, so we’ve got now we’ve got a pay system and irrespective of caste you get in if you’ve got the money right. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Then you’ve got a caste system which determines whether you get a place and this person who got 35%, I’m assuming you got higher than 35 because you said 80 something, right? 87, 87% right. So someone else got 35% and got a free place in dental school without paying the money. Is that because he came from a high.

Caste, lower caste.

A lower caste? Okay.

So the lower caste people get priority because the belief is that they’re from a disadvantaged background. So we help them giving them the seat because they didn’t have all the facilities which the upper caste. It’s not to do with the money, it’s just the pure caste system. So you could have a lower caste people with no money. Yeah. Who are loaded and then the low upper caste people who are not loaded, but still the lower caste person would get the seat. At least that was the case in my case, which was 1999.

Wow. Any other dynamics in getting into dental school? Because you’ve got money, you’ve got caste.

And I think there is a political. So the the university I went to was owned by a MP in that area so he could give the seat to if someone wants if he wants to someone. So just like that.

Just sort of got. Yeah right. Okay. How interesting. How interesting. Yeah. Well that’s really interesting. So what was university like there? So you went to this town. No cinema, two restaurants, Nothing there to do other than study, right? Yeah. So tell me about university.

So I lost. I was very homesick because I was pampered a lot at home, spoilt, but didn’t obviously behave like that. But one particular food, which didn’t get so lost, like, um, I lost 25 kilos in two months and my mum was worried. She when she came to visit me, she was crying. She’s like, you know, we don’t want to get him. She wanted me to take you out from this college and everything. I got a, I didn’t understand English because I was from Gujarati medium. So my all my under-graduation was in my mother tongue, Gujarati. And then when I went to university, everything was English. So I did not understand a word of what they were saying in the lecture. So. So you were.

Just walking around saying chem sarrocchi all day long? Exactly.

And, and actually people were talking in Hindi, which I could understand and talk. Yeah, yeah. The lectures, you know, the lecturers, they were talking in English, they were giving lectures in English. And I had no, I had no clue the books were in English, although I did English language as a language. But it’s like you do French as a language, and then you study dentistry in French. Not a chance.

It’s completely chance.

So, so same thing to me. So I struggled a lot. So I used to have a dictionary which translates English, Gujarati to English, English to Gujarati, and then a book Dental book next to each other and trying to figure out like small, like a cell, like, you know, um, what do you.

Call nucleus or whatever, right? Mitochondria or no.

Idea. So, so, so it was, it was really hard work.

I mean, it’s hard enough without that, right? Yeah. Yeah.

One is definitely hard, hard for anyone. But this was definitely very hard work.

And Gujarati is not, not written in Abcd. Efg either, right? So. So, so. So you were learning a new alphabet? Yeah.

No. Not new alphabet because obviously learned English.

English language. Oh, of course. Yeah.

I scored I scored 52%. Just 2% of 2% more than a passing mark. Right. So you weren’t a pro? No, I wasn’t a pro. Definitely not. Well, so. So. But. But, yeah, so first year was really tough, but then. Yeah, go got got out. Then this the second year was tough again.

At what point during that journey were you conversant in English?

None. Wasn’t even until I came to UK. Because the thing is, the viva the orals happen in Hindi most of the time. Okay, some words in English you can write in English, which could anyway. Um, so it’s just understanding and then writing which is which I could do. So that wasn’t a major problem. It’s just the first year understanding English terminologies to Gujarati and then that that was the main challenge.

Okay. And then in terms of just going through like knocking about with your friends and colleagues and stuff like that, were you just talking in Hindi or.

Yeah, Hindi, but then that so not only had to learn English, I had to learn Marathi because the patient wouldn’t talk in Hindi. So so and they wouldn’t even talk in, in English. They didn’t know because it’s a village. So I had to learn Marathi to, to, to communicate. Otherwise they wouldn’t even talk because they would understand Hindi. It’s like, again, I’ve heard that in France sometime when you go, if you speak English, they ignore you kind of thing. So it’s the same thing here. So you know, you speak Hindi, they understand, but they won’t answer. You need to speak to them in Marathi. So I learned Marathi.

So you learnt English and Marathi?

Marathi, Yeah.

Wow. So you get to the end of Dental school? Yeah. Assuming you qualified, right. Did you have to sit exams? What sort of student were you? Were you passing with flying colours or were you just scraping to a C?

I struggled first two years quite massively. Third year was okay ish. Finally I was I was I was in the topper, but I was eighth in the class. Okay. So, you know, and the final year I started understanding dentistry because in finally we all had all the subjects were dentistry related. So I could understand the dentistry a bit better.

And what was the structure of the course there in terms of clinical versus theory? And from what like year two or whatever, how much clinical experience did you get?

Very minimal actually, because it was a deemed university in the sense it was almost prioritised university and patients were not that many in there. So we all the good cases like extraction, for example, the we only used to get loose teeth to take it out. The extractions used the the firm teeth used to go to the people who are doing masters. But we did have a good experience in Endodontics because you know, and having said that, I would say I had much more experience than what UK undergraduates goes through nowadays.

Okay, so you get to the end of dental school. Yeah, you’ve got your degree. What happens next?

Then my aunt comes around from London and she’s like, you know, dentists in London, they are caning it. They are like loaded. They are like so rich. You should come to UK and, you know, do dentistry. And I said, I don’t want to go to UK. I love my family. So I said, You know what? I’m not going to go abroad. I will try and sit exam for my MSC in India. Yeah. Which I did. And I didn’t didn’t get score. I mean, the India is so competitive. I did get good score. But again, not enough to get me into get into my what you call the seat masters. The master’s.

Program. Right. Yeah. So you sat an exam to get into the master’s program, and you failed that?

No, I passed. But not not enough. Enough percentage. So again, I had high ATS, but people get 98%, 97%, which I’m not capable, capable of. So then I went back to my grandfather, obviously. So he’s like, look, so there are seats, there are donation seats for you.

And we go.

There we go. So he’s like, okay, we’ll pay for it. And wanted to become I wanted to really do ortho. Yeah. So he’s like, okay, we’ll pay for ortho. And at the same time IQ International qualifying examination, which is the examination you had to pass if you want to come to UK, they did first time in India, so my aunt obviously was talking to my granddad. So my granddad is like, You know what? You sit this exam. Yeah. If you fail. Yeah, we will pay for we will pay for your sister’s master’s. Yeah. So, so I set the exam. Unfortunately, I passed.

So did you go into that exam wanting to fail? No.

No, I never want to fail. So I did my. I did my best to give exam. Yeah. So I passed. And then I came to UK. I passed the second exam. Third exam?

How far after dental school was this? You’re straight after. Straight after you passed an English exam. Yeah, and I do.

I do Pass. Yeah. That’s a big story. I had to pass in English, but I had to take classes for that because there is a speaking and listening and all that space called IELTS pilot.

Did you do that in the UK or did you do that in in India? Yeah.

So I had to take like two months. I took lessons and can, you.

Know, can you not pay your way through that and get a seat.

Probably we could have, but no I didn’t ask for money. Um, I, I stayed, I stayed in amdavad. I remember the really dodgy flat because, again, I was a dentist now, right? So I didn’t want my parents or anyone to pay for my. So I tried to cut the cost as much as possible. So I, I rented the cheapest room, which I could, and it was really bad, like bugs everywhere. And it was filthy. But so I stayed there for two months and passed the exam just enough.

So you studied for two months for this? For this exam? Just exam? Yeah. And were you practising dentistry at the time?

No, I wasn’t. I was just studying for English.

Wow. And so you passed the English exam, and then how how long before you hopped on a flight to the UK?

So the so all these IQ exams happened in 2005. So I did it was pretty good at my right now people are struggling to get seats, but at the time there was a shortage of dentists in UK, so they, they expedite the exam. So I set number one in February 2nd in May 3rd, one in I think July or something like that, June, July, August or something. And then and then I was registered, registered by December 2005. Then I came here 2006 March.

Where did you land?

March 16th of March.

Where did you go? To London or.

London? Yeah, my aunt’s place here. So I went there. Um, I had an interview, telephone interview two, and I got a job. And the guy. The guy is like, you’re going to get this much amount of money. So that’s a lot of money. So yeah, that’s fine. I said yes to the first offer. I came here and realised I got paid less than half of the value which normal dentist gets paid.

Right, Right.

So that’s fine. Yeah. That was my first year. Your first.

Year? First job. So tell me about the practice and then what was your English level like then How what was the was there a I think it was the first time you went to the UK or not. Yeah.

No, I mean I came to UK for my exams, so every time I came I came for exam, stayed for a week and went back to India.

But, but, but this was the first time you were living in the UK for an extended period of time, right? Yes. What was that like? Culture shock? Um, language barriers. We you struggling to. Talk to patients.

Yeah, so I did. I was struggling and I’m quite at least believe I’m very good at adapting. So I was. I was in here. I didn’t. I adapted what it is, what it is, and that’s how I believe. So, you know, you just have to adapt where you are. Yeah. So I didn’t, I wasn’t I learnt to cook, I learnt to clean, I learnt everything in regards to the practice. It was in Southall. So not too much of a cultural shock. No, of course not.

India from India, right?

Yeah. But still, I remember very clearly my second patient. She walked out of the room saying, I don’t want to see a fresh dentist. My second patient patient ever. Yeah. And she was Indian, but yeah, she just went out. She’s like, You can’t talk. And I mean, I was struggling, you know, I could talk in English, but not like the way the English people speak. But that’s fine. That happened for first year. I saw lots of patients there. Like, this guy looks too young. We don’t want to see him. But slowly it completely changed then people requesting me to see see me because I was there working hard. I was the one actually responsible for asking them to open Saturdays because I’ve got nothing to do. So said, Open Saturdays. I’m going to work on Saturdays. In the history of the practice, they didn’t work on Saturday. They started opening. They started eating like me.

Just for you.

Just for me. Because I had nothing to like. I was like two free days, a whole like, what am I going to do? Two free days?

Like, so what am I going to do with this Saturday and Sunday? Right. You you’ve definitely got cinemas in South Hall, right? Yes, we.

Do. But, you know, I’m not so because I’ve never seen my family. Yeah, my grandfather used to work seven days. My uncle works seven days. My brother still works seven days. We didn’t have a weekend off. So, I mean, I’m not used to having weekends off, so I was struggling to do something and I said, look, you know, might as well might as well work. So yeah, I was the one who started the even now, actually, the corporate I work for all the practices where I go. I started eight till eight sort of days. Yeah. Before no one did that.


12 hour days.

Wow. But you had in your own words, you had nothing better to do, so you might as well work, right? Yeah. Yeah.

Which I enjoy. I mean, and for me, dentistry is like a like a typical. So I was I was actually talking to someone and I said, kids nowadays, it’s like a they want a love marriage. They don’t understand the arranged marriage. So dentistry for me is like an arranged marriage. I got dentist first and then I fell in love with it. Whereas now people are like, they want to love dentistry before learned. And it’s just it’s quite difficult to understand what things involve until you start getting into it, if that makes sense.

Understood. Yeah. So I guess. I guess you were. You know, the reason the reason you went for dentistry because it was a cheap option. Yeah. And then you fell in love with it, right?

Yeah, yeah, yeah. I fell in love. Actually. I fell in love way after I was just sticking along.

Was it a was it a means to an end? You were doing all these hours? 8 to 8. Working six, seven days a week. What was it? What was your motivation? Was it money at the time? Was it I want to upskill and and and really earn my stripes and get some experience under my belt. What was your motivation for doing those 12 hour days, six, seven days a week?

Yeah. Money has never been a motivation for me because I’ve I’ve come from a good background and, you know, as far as I have enough money, I’m okay. I don’t have a very flashy lifestyle or big dreams that I want to have like a, you know, big holidays or anything. I hate holidays as well.

You hate holidays.

The thing is, I love I genuinely love what I do. So people go on holiday to really get away from what they’re doing most of the time. Not all of them, but most of the time I don’t. If I want to rest, then I’ll just I’ll just. That’s different. Resting is different then going on a holiday to get away from something I do, like rest, you know? I mean, I don’t want to work seven days, so, you know, I prefer resting holiday concept is completely, you know. But having said that, I do go on holiday because my wife and my son, they will eat me alive if I don’t. So. Oh, gosh.

Flipping heck yeah. So the only reason you go on holiday is to is to placate your wife and son, right?


Wow. And your concept of this is really interesting is your concept of holiday is to get away from work.

Not my concept. No, no, no, no.

But what you think people’s concept of holiday.

Is my because, you know, if I want to do holiday, I would just go somewhere for a week. Nothing. Just rest and relax. That would be my holiday. But that’s that’s not most of the people. They want to go in different countries. I could I could go on a holiday in a Premier Inn for seven days and I can be fine. Does that make sense? Because I’m relaxing. Yeah. Okay.

So could could you go on holiday in a Premier Inn two miles from your house?

I could, and I completely switch off.

Bloody hell. So, look, I. When I go on holiday, I don’t go on holiday to run away from work or escape work. Right. My thing of holiday, I guess it’s. It’s reconnecting and having that time, that unfiltered time with family, loved ones, friends, exploring new places. Yeah, the intrigue of that. Get some sun on my skin and just being in a different environment, Right? Whether it’s experiencing different cuisines. Et cetera. Et cetera. It’s definitely not the work thing. I mean, I’m going to go on holiday in two weeks time. Yeah, it’s going to be a working holiday. I’m off to Thailand and I’ve scheduled four hours of work. I’m going to be on a different time zone and I’ve got some overlapping time zones so I can still have calls with clients. So I don’t see it as escaping from work, but I see it as a switch of environment, a change of mindset.

That’s good because I think for me it’s mainly to, as you said, for reconnecting with family because we farm at home. My wife would just continuously doing something. If you go on a holiday, she has got no choice but to spend time with us. So you know, it’s for me. And that’s why even we’ve just been to Dubai because my brother, you know, he’s like, look, we need to go away from because if I’m at home, I’ll be working. Yeah. So we just went away. But that’s different. That’s connecting with your family and that’s, that’s completely different. I’m talking about the holidays where people just want they look, look. I mean, I’ve never seen a craze on a holiday again. Maybe it’s a cultural thing where I’ve been brought up. When I was young, my holiday was to go to my mama’s house. That’s it.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. And it’s interesting. Even my wife growing up, she would go to her uncles or her aunties house, you know, three towns along or whatever. Right. Or, you know, to another town or whatever. And that would be her holiday. And it’s a break from home, right? Whatever it is, it’s it’s it’s away from your familiar environment. Yeah. And you know yeah, it’s really interesting that actually your concept of holiday so okay so so so it was money was never the motivation.

Yeah. Money is no motivation for me. I again had nothing else to do. And one thing motivated me was I knew that I wasn’t a good dentist.

You wasn’t a good dentist?

I wasn’t, no. So I wanted to improve. I’m constantly. Trying to improve constantly even now, you know, for me, improvement, learning new things, improving myself is is right at the top. So I did lots of courses. I did certificate courses. I did I did two certificate courses, I did mjtf, um, lots of cpds I used to do three 400 hours of Cpds like crazy amount of CPD to learn and improve my skill.

We just one of these course junkies. Any course you saw? I’m just going to go on that. I’m going to book on it. Were you earning money to pay for courses? Was that, was that your thing?

No, I wasn’t earning so I was still 99.9%. Yeah. You know, and I used to, you know, if I used to give an option to an amalgam or composite, I used to pray that they choose for amalgam because composites were associated with sensitivity. So I just don’t want patients to come back for sensitivity. I’ll do amalgam. So 99.9%. But I loved improving even. But even when I was like cram prep and stuff like that, there is no private Crown Prep versus NHS. Does that make sense? There’s no ando. You can still do a good endo under, you know, whatever conditions you are in. So it’s a it takes time. So I do take took time so I wasn’t profitable dentist I still do 9000 Udas though so that’s a lot that’s more than my current practice whole practice target.

And but that was you as an individual. You were doing me as.

An individual used to do 9000 units because I used to work long hours and more days simply so not that I was quicker. So that’s the that’s kept me going. Not money is continuously learning, but I wouldn’t say I was very passionate about dentistry. Again, I was in the dentistry and I didn’t want to do a bad job. So I would make I would learn to to make sure that and for some reason, like from the very childhood we see how my grandfather treat patients and, you know, patient care was always discussed upon like, you know, we need to care about patients and all that stuff. And that’s, that’s sort of ingrained in my brain. So I wanted to give my best to my patients from the beginning. So that was the reason everything changed, though, when I did my MSC in Cons. So after six years of my.

Msc in what.

Conservative dentistry. So from Eastman Okay, so I did I had worked six years like this and the reason I was in UK is because I said I will do my MSC because I wanted to do Masters in India. So I wanted to do Masters somehow so but didn’t join straight away. Because if you are an overseas, you have to pay double the fees. Whereas if you are citizen or whatever resident of UK, you pay half. So I waited until I got my residency, which is six years, and then applied for the MSC in conservative Dentistry in Cons, which is a one full, full time one year program because I used to I did a certificate in restorative dental practice from Eastman and that was an MSC. It can you can work towards MSC, so you do certificate. Then the second year, two years were diploma and then MSC and I was doing certificate, but I could not implement anything in my practice because I was like purely NHS. So I went to my tutor at that time and he’s like, Um, for you the best is to do this MSC in Cons where you treat patients in hospital. And he was his name is Rob Moore. Rob Moore. Rob Stone He, he recommended that. And he, Andrew Kreuztal is the guy who actually wrote me a recommendation letter for my seat. And that was pure Indian style. So he he basically picked up the phone with the head of the Department of the MSC in cons is like, you need to take this guy like literally. And he’s like, I’m sending you send you a reference, but you need to take him because he’s seen my work. And he was quite impressed. And he’s like, You know, you deserve this place because he was also an ex. He was the one who started in Cons along with Derek Setchell and all the rest of it in 1989, long time back.

And I’m assuming you couldn’t just pay extra for that seat, right?

No, no. Welcome to the real world.

I had to.

Work really hard. I did work hard. Yeah. Um, so. So that’s that’s how I got into my the cons and. Yeah, that was a hard one year. I mean, I. I worked. I’ve worked again seven days a week. I used to go to the hospital and seven days a week. So we used to treat patients three sessions. But then we did our own lab work, so I used to go there every morning, 730 till 11:00 at night time because.

So you quit your job to do your MSC, right? You have to.

You have to. It’s a full time, Full time. Right? I quit everything. And I was working. I gathered money enough to pay mortgages and stuff. So I had I had savings so that I know that it will last me for a year.

So you weren’t still living with your aunty at this time, right?

No, I had my own house. Okay. Um, and I was married at the time as well. So. So between.

Between, between coming to the UK, starting your NHS job and then doing your MSC, you got married at some point in that in that.

Gap. Got married? Yeah. Got married. And my wife was quite supportive. So I got married. And then the next year I said, I’m going to go year sabbatical learning, although I had a savings. So. But but it wasn’t that. It was like we a newly married couple and I’m now working seven days a week in the morning, seven till 11 night time. But she was very supportive.

And we were talking about arranged marriages earlier. Was it an arranged marriage or did you did you meet her in the cinema?

No, it was it was introduced so mutual sort of family friends introduced us and then we dated. And then. And then we got married. Yeah.

So sort of some kind of.

Semi arranged.

Semi arranged matchmaking. But you had some you had some choice and she had some choice, right?

I mean, I wasn’t I’m not a party guy or don’t go to pubs. I don’t.

You’re not a drinker either. Don’t drink. Don’t drink. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. So you were introduced by what? Family, friends, aunties, uncles.

Yeah. So it’s a funny story. So when I used to work in Southall, so basically my some of the relative of mine introduced to my wife. Yeah, but this is completely different story. So when I used to work in Southall one one aunty used to come and she was my patient. She’s like, Are you married? And every time she come check up every six months. And I said, No, I’m not. And she’s like, I have a really amazing girl for you, you know, Can you introduce to your mum? And I’m like, No, no, that’s fine. I’m, I’m thinking, I’m not I’m not getting married any time soon. This carried on even until like we were engaged. And then when. When we were getting married. Yeah. The aunty is my wife’s aunt. No way. No way into the wedding. She’s like. She’s like I was telling her about this girl. You’re kidding. Yeah, it was funny.

That’s hilarious. So every time she was saying, I’ve got this girl for you, it was your future wife.

Yes, it was.

Okay now. Wow.

That was funny. She still reminds me every time we meet. Um, but yeah, so that was. That’s the story.

That’s really interesting. Really, really interesting. So. So. So. Okay, so. So you got married and then. And then you went off to do the MSC and you were basically away from home for.

No, I was at Eastman, so I used to travel. Yeah. But yeah, I was technically away from home. Yeah. I’d only come to sleep to to avoid rent, you know, in the London. So.

And make sure your wife at least had a presence of a husband in the house every now and then, Right? Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

Just to annoy I think. I think that actually saved my marriage. The the MSC in course is called, you know, Marriage breaker course. People get divorced after that and it has happened. But I think that has saved my marriage because like I’m good in small doses. So so I think that that course really changed my way of looking at dentistry. Hi, how I thought about how precision dentistry works, how precisely you can do stuff, how what good dentistry looks like. Yeah. And got to implement as well.

So from what point did you go from being a rubbish dentist to a good dentist? Was it after that or was it incremental?

It was incremental. So even before MSC and Cons I did this, you know, Eastman Restorative Dental Practice. So perhaps for improving my endo improved a lot. I invested a lot of things in materials and stuff myself, so I was improving. But that one year definitely made a huge impact because as I said, the amount of work I did was almost equivalent to what clean dental students do because I didn’t have to do it. But I said, You know, I’m taking a year off. Yeah, I’m going to do as much as I can. So I was there. I was working really hard and, you know, and because I was working hard and my work was good, I, I scored the highest. In the phantom head test in three months. So what you do is what they do is when you scored really good, they give you challenging patients, they give you good like big cases, complex cases. And that helped me because then I started finishing those cases quickly. Then not a hospital centre. I used to finish them as a private clinic standard, like quick because hospital, everything takes ages, right? But I used to finish them quicker, so I got more cases, more experience. So it was really good. And then I got a prize for the best student of the year as well, so.

Oh, wow.

With a distinction.

Congratulations. And so how did you go from there? Two becoming practice owner. A teacher? Yeah. In a full mouth reconstruction. Having your own training academy. And then all these other crazy ideas that you have now. Right. And lecturing and teaching and speaking. So you go, you know, if we take the journey back, you legally bribed your way into dental school, and the only reason you did that is because it was cheap. Yeah. And now you’re teaching, you know, hundreds of dentists how to do full mouth reconstruction. Dentistry primarily. What happened?

So, I mean, when I finished my MSC, I was like on my ego was really high and I thought anyone would hire me because I’ve got this credentials. And I applied like 200 places and I did not get any interviews. So I was literally bombed out. And so then I said, But I got offered for teaching at Eastman because of my scores and everything. So I started teaching three days a week at Eastman Dental Institute. The MSC course, which I did, I was teaching there, the Distance Learning one, and was a program coordinator. So a lot of my teaching, that’s when my passion started. You know, when I teach people like I thought it was normal what I’m teaching. But people really started enjoying. They’re like, Oh, this is amazing. You never appreciate when I never I still don’t like what I do. For me, it’s normal. But when they receive it and they the transformation I see was amazing. So that’s when the passion started teaching. But obviously the pay wasn’t great. So I started applying for jobs because I couldn’t get into private dentistry. And then my friend, he saw my CV and he owned like six practices at the time. Now he owns 16.

Wow. And he gave me opportunity to work in his practice and he actually helped me. He told me at the time that, look, you have to drop your teaching commitments if you want to work. And at the time I was broke completely, like zero money in the bank. So I said, Yeah, I will do whatever. So he gave me a opportunity to go around his 11 practices and do full mouth reconstruction in implants and endo. So I used to travel again, working seven days a week, travelling 11 practices to do all this work. But what it gave me is a huge amount of exposure to dentistry, a high end dentistry. So I did lots of implant very quickly. I did lots of complex dentistry in a quick session. And then what happened is a good referring dentist, like if someone refers to case for implant, I used to do full mouth assessment and then I would say, okay, I’ll place this implant and refer case back to the dentist saying that you need to do full mouth reconstruction basically because the patient needs full mouth reconstruction. And most of the time what used to happen was that the dentist would either not do it or they botched up the whole case and had to redo them.

So I said, you know what? As out of frustration, I started teaching them full mouth reconstruction. Only people who refer cases to me. I said, You know what, I’ll teach you so they can do a better patient care. Again, it’s all about like how we can give patient a better care. So I started teaching from Reconstruction in 2014, 2015. That’s when my first cohort was, but it was literally my referring dentist. And that’s why I still to date only take nine dentists in my hands on course because I never found more than nine dentists going to be easy to to give the kind of attention I want. So we started with nine dentists a year after year. I used to take 1 or 2 groups of nine dentists in our own corporate, so I didn’t promote anything. I used to just teach them because I’m referring cases back to them. Yeah, And then the pandemic happened. And then during pandemic, I was like three months. I was sitting and I didn’t want to get divorced. So, you know, I said I need to occupy myself. Otherwise my neck, my.

Want to spend too much time with your wife, right?

Yeah. If I spend too much time, she will. She will definitely give me divorce. Yeah. So to keep me occupied, I started sort of building up courses. What I used to teach already, but I said I’ll record everything. So I started recording everything. And that’s when really the the idea of spreading everything came because, you know, a year after 2021, in June was my first proper post, like my first post on Facebook, that’s when I started posting on social media in 2021. Wow. Before I wasn’t on any Facebook or Instagram, I was, but I wasn’t posting actively. Yeah, nothing. I mean, I was there just as lurking, you know, looking at what other people doing. Yeah. Rather than posting my own stuff. Right. So that’s when I started and then. Obviously I created my group Full Mouth Reconstruction for GDPs.

Did how did this all take off your first post? And then at what point did somebody what were you posting? First of all, we’re posting before and after.

Yeah, I was posting before and after cases. My intention was to help other dentists because I have 100% success rate in and the way I measure success rate as you really in the beginning mentioned, is not how many people come to my course, how many people who come to my course are actually doing what I’ve taught them to do, and that’s how I measure my success rate. And my success rate was 100% in my the corporate I used to work for. So all the dentists I taught from 2015 to 20 20 or 2021 even. Yeah, they all are doing full mouth reconstruction because I used to nag them. I used to like. And you’ve seen that in communication course, right? I’ve seen it when you, when you came to teach them. Yeah. I mean there is no barrier. I mean they, I treat them like, you know, kids, if they don’t do anything, I shout at them, make sure they do it and I help them 100%, you know, to, to implement stuff. Yeah. And I saw the I saw the progression and it is contagious. Like when you see, when you help someone and they, they achieve something, it’s like it’s amazing. Like the satisfaction you get is much more than you achieve the same thing by yourself. And I’m sure you know that as well. I mean, you probably help people, lots of people, you know.

All the time.

It’s it’s contagious. And if someone who doesn’t teach won’t understand this, but someone who teaches, they would understand what I’m talking about. Like the. So obviously, I wanted to get that joy and help lots of dentists and that’s where I started posting on social media. And then I created a group that full mouth reconstruction for GDP’s Facebook group. And that’s when everything started taking off because I get a good feedback and I could promote my courses to people who really want to improve rather than just going out there and saying that, Oh, do you want to join my course? Because again, for me, money is not the motivation for me. How can I improve the end goal, which is giving patients better care? And if if GDPs can do full mouth reconstruction, they can diagnose, first of all, more full mouth reconstruction cases which patients are not even aware of, and then they can help them out properly. And that’s where that’s where everything started.

So what’s the most common problem you see with GP’s who can’t do full mouth reconstruction and that patient walks into their practice or their clinic with a consultation and they’ve got wear or whatever, right? And they need comprehensive work. What typically happens in that scenario if you if you’re not capable of delivering this type of dentistry, you don’t have the confidence and a complex case walks into your into your surgery, what do you typically see?

So I’ll tell you from experience, I’m not again, I don’t want to generalise things because obviously everyone’s different and you know everyone what they think. But what happens typically is one case scenario is where you’re an NHS dentist and you’re seeing lots of patients like 15 minutes Check-up Okay, Now many time we and I’m guilty of that as well. We judge patients when patients come in, go there. You tell patient that. I think dentists are very good at understanding when they see the teeth wear cases. So they tell patients they got a tooth wear and they might give them a mouth guard, but because they can’t do full mouth reconstruction, they can’t visualise how the treatment will work, how it will help patient. And then it’s the cost as well. They may think that patient won’t be able to afford it. They got 15 minutes for a check-up Whether it’s worth discussing all that, where patients just going to say no or if they discuss, they send patient to somewhere else. Now they have built that rapport with patient and most of the time patient will say no because they don’t want to go anywhere else most of the time because they are not in pain.

They don’t want to go anywhere else. If the GDP they do full mouth reconstruction, then they more likelihood that the patient will say yes to that person because they trust them rather than going somewhere else. But I think in my opinion, the main issue is not knowing which cases, because teeth is not the only cases where you need full mouth reconstruction knowledge. There are lots of other cases, like if you’re doing full arch veneers, if you’re doing 5 to 5 cosmetic aesthetic cases, even general dentistry, if you’re doing like 2 or 3 teeth restoration, knowing occlusion and knowing the full mouth, how the whole mouth works can help as well. I mean, I get the side effect of knowing full mouth. Is your general dentistry gets like improves so much and becomes so predictable and you don’t feel afraid of like doing those five veneer case or, you know, even if you’re not raising or you’re not afraid of doing sort of a little bit more aesthetic, complex case.

Okay. And so you’ve created this online full Mouth Reconstruction Academy. You’ve got your, I guess, your I don’t know what it’s called, but your you’re basically your complete course where they can come and do hands on with you. They can take the online concept, etcetera, etcetera. How is your training or the training that you deliver different to someone else teaching, let’s say FMR or full mouth reconstruction? What’s your. I’m going to put you on the spot here. What’s your what’s your what’s your USP? Yeah, I know.

Exactly what my USP is, but what I want to say is that, you know, I feel that people right now, dentists are very lucky. There are so many good tutors out there. And I say this openly that, you know, there are so many good people, which I would learn from if I were, you know, when I was young. So it’s not that I’m saying that I’m the best and, you know, rest of the people are not great. The way I put together my course is how I learn. And I know that my dentistry really, really was bad, really bad. And I wish I would have taken photos because people don’t people don’t they don’t they don’t believe me when I say my. They’re like, No, your digital can’t be bad. It’s like, no, genuinely was really pathetic, but they can’t. I wish I could go back and just take photos of my, you know, older cases, but I learn very methodically. So the way I created a program where I have my my book, as, you know, full mouth reconstruction for GDPs. Yeah. Is one of the best seller. So the book is there for people who just don’t know what full mouth reconstruction is and just want to understand how I work. But the course, the way it works is I’ve recorded everything online.

So all the lectures, all the practical demonstration is there online. They do a online course. First, they watch all the videos and everything. Then they come for six days training. It’s three weekends, it’s broken down, different three weekends, and I teach them exactly how the full mouth reconstruction, all the steps, the three steps, and I teach them those three steps. The beauty is I don’t give any demonstration because everything is recorded online. So when they come in, they literally start doing practical work. And when they make mistake, I then show them how to improve on them. Because I’ve been on so many courses myself where the, you know, the lecturer or the the the teacher gives demonstration and you’re like, Wow, this is amazing. And then when you start doing it, you can’t implement it. It’s like, you know, you, you see the demonstration of the toy or something and why the toy and you come bring home and you can’t really replicate what the guy was doing. No. And and that’s where I feel that it’s waste of time me giving demonstration. I would rather people use that time in practising, practising, practising and figure out what makes them what makes it work. And this is yes, actually this weekend I was doing a weekend one of the complete and this is do every time that I ask them what did they learn? And everyone learned completely different things like not all nine of them learn different things and you would imagine that they all watch the same video.

Yeah, they all watch the same content online. They all made different mistakes. Yeah. Right. So I that’s, that’s, that’s where I feel the, my USB is where people watch everything online. They make they, they make mistakes and improve it. It simplifies and then when they start practising I then do 12 months of mentoring with them so that they are not left on their own once they finish the hands on course. In fact, when they start the online course, they start getting the they start getting the recordings and participation. But the ones they finish hands on course after that, they get 12 months of mentoring where they go into the clinic and they start implementing because that’s where, again, I feel it makes everything completely round circle where it’s fully supported. They’re not left alone. Yeah, when they finish because that’s when real work happens when you go to practice, because you can do on Phantom Head, it’s a big jump from phantom head to patient’s mouth and you need really a lot of hand-holding.

And so when they come on your whatever it is, your eight hour hands on course, are they literally doing hands on exercises for the vast majority of the whole of that time?

All the time. Not vast full time. There is no demonstration. I would give demonstration to that one particular person for the for the mistake they are making. So if someone’s not holding the handpiece properly, I’ll show them how to hold handpiece properly or someone’s not doing the margin properly, I’ll show them the margin or someone’s not shape’s not right. I’ll show them how to build the shape, but the demonstration will be different for everyone and it’s individualised.

Okay. Okay. Interesting. And so when you go on a normal I’ve never been on a hands on dental course, by the way. But, but, but if I was to go on then you probably have. Right. Typically, how much time do you spend with a drill in your hand or whatever, doing the hands on versus theory and not doing the hands on and mixing it up? Well, typically it depends.

It depends what courses you go to. Yeah. But there is always maybe let’s say if it’s 9 to 5 926925 course, at least there are I would say two hours of theory or hands on demonstration on average, some less, some more. But on average two hours of that, plus whatever they’re doing, they’re doing it for the first time. They haven’t seen it. They’ve just seen on the hands on demonstration and now they’re immediately replicating it. Whereas in my case, they watched it 100 times at home. So it’s not that they just watch the demonstration now implementing it. Got you. They’ve watched it 100 times again and again at home, semantic wise in their head, and now they’re practising. It’s completely different. And I guess.

The other thing is, if you’re in a group and you watch the demonstrator do a demo and you miss something.

Yeah, it’s very you can’t even see it. Also like even six people had around and it’s just difficult. So that’s why I don’t take more than nine people. Yeah. Even then, demonstrating something to all nine of them is difficult.

Yeah. Whereas I guess the close up video and everything works better, right? Um, and you mentioned that you’ve got 100% success rate in implementation.

Yeah, not now. So now obviously 100% success rate when I was teaching our own dentists. Yeah. Now it’s not 100%, it’s around 80%. And I’m trying to improve because these dentists, when they go. It’s I lose control. And that’s why I’m constantly trying to improve. So what I’ve just implemented now is that I want them to have a case ready. So what what people would do is when they enrol, they need to have a case and they start doing it together. And I think that would work much better. But yeah, so 80%, 85% I feel is still a good percentage. It is, but I don’t think enough is happy.

You’re not happy with the 80% that you used to get because because back in the day you got 80%. You had to pay for a seat, right? Yeah. Yes.

No, I used to get 100% right. But it was different because those were my referring dentists and I used to sell the cases for them, if that makes sense. Understood. So patients. And that’s why I called you in and I said, you know, can you help? Because I want to do anything I can to these dentists where, you know, I feel if they communicate and if they get the case, they have ability to do it, They’re not. And so I’ve asked I’ve asked every dentist actually, I’m asking that. Are you confident doing full mouth reconstruction? They all are saying yes. So there is 100% success rate into them. Being confident is getting patient.

Getting them, getting them to deliver or finding the patients to do.

Finding the patient.

Or selling it. Right. Because they may they may have it. But but then, you know, I think the biggest your curriculum that I delivered for you, you sent me probably one of the biggest challenges I’ve ever had when it comes to teaching. Right. So you tell me, hey, I want you to put on a day for my delegates to teach them how to sell full mouth reconstruction. And I say, no problem, we can do that. And we put it on this day where they brought a case in and they tried to sell to me. And then I gave them specific feedback, right. Which I thought was a great way of doing it. But there was one caveat to that, which was they have to sell full mouth reconstruction to their patients in a 15 minute appointment. And that was the challenge. And it was really interesting because I think I learned as much from that course as I taught, and it really gave me an insight into the into the psychology of that. And it’s wholly possible, right? You can you can be running an NHS clinic and still comfortably sell 15 to £20,000 cases to these patients very, very easily.

And it worked because they are confident in doing full mouth reconstruction, if that makes sense. So if their communication is good, but they’re not confident in doing full mouth reconstruction, it doesn’t work because patient will see that they’re not confident. But if they’re confident and then they’re good at communication, then it works really, really well.

Interesting. Interesting. And so I want to take you through to my final question. Yeah. Which I ask everyone, which is imagine it’s your last day on the planet. Yeah, you’ve achieved what you wanted to achieve and you’ve got, you know, you’ve educated 10,000 dentists in full mouth reconstruction more and more and more, more, more and more. And. And no, no, no, no. And you have 100% implementation execution rate. That’s nice. Yeah. And but it’s your last day on the planet and you’re still married because you didn’t spend too much time with your wife.

And went on a holidays.

And went on holidays. Yeah. Despite not wanting to run away from work. But you’ve got your loved ones around you on your last day and you want to I guess you want to leave them with three pieces of wisdom. What would they be?

That’s deep. Um. So I think one would be. To always work on your strength. And when I when I when I really imagine this scenario, I mean, imagining my son, um, as what would I give him an advice as, as, as my son because I feel more responsible for him, if that makes sense. Because he’s the one. I’m the one responsible for him. So work on your strength and find someone else to help with the weaknesses. Because what happened initially for some time in my Dental career, even, I was working really hard to improve on my weaknesses. So like, if I wasn’t good at scale, I literally hammered down in learning that skill rather than carry on doing what I enjoyed and work more efficiently, go more deeper into that work. And didn’t figure that out until I started doing implants and full mouth reconstruction that, you know how enjoyable dentistry, stressful dentistry can be if you like to if you if you like what you do. Okay, so work on your strength. Yeah.

And get help with your weaknesses. Weaknesses.

Okay. Like get someone else to do it.

So that’s number one.

Learn how to communicate with people. Okay? Because communication in day to day life or, you know, conflict management communication is so important. And I’m learning that because I’ve got a practice now, I’m a practice owner. Yeah. And, you know, you have to be, you know, you need to communicate well. I mean, I’m very I believe that I’m, I’m okay communicating with patients, but that’s not enough. You need to be a good communicator with people.

It’s funny, Devon, remember, you know, when we had that day together and we were going through, you know, your your business structure and your goals moving forward. One of the things you said to me is you’re naturally an introvert.

Oh, very bad. Yeah.

So, so, so, so that took me by surprise because when we spent the day together, we were laughing and joking. Right? Yeah. All the rest of it. And you stand up on a stage and you can comfortably lecture and speak to what, hundreds of delegates and you have nine delegates on your course and you engage with them and you teach them and you get execution and stuff. So then I asked you the question, Well, how on earth can you be an introvert? Right? And then and then tell me, give me an example of where you display your introverted behaviour.

In the parties and the weddings. I’m the guy with the phone right in the corner. I don’t want to talk to anyone. If someone comes and talk to me, that’s fine, but I won’t approach someone and talk to someone. Yeah, I am an introvert, but whatever I am right now is all learned skill and I genuinely believe we can learn whatever you want. I just love being introvert, that’s all.

And I guess for your you know, you’re saying you’re giving out advice to your son, right? Work on your strengths, get someone to help with your weaknesses and then be a good communicator. Right? Yeah. So important. Would you want your son to be an introvert?

Uh, I don’t mind if he is, to be honest. Yeah. You can be introvert and be a good communicator. I believe I’m not a bad communicator. Yeah, I can. I can improve and I will improve. Yeah, but you can be an introvert because I think it’s a it’s a it’s a it’s not a bad skill. I can be by myself. Yeah. I don’t need people around me.

You’re comfortable. You’re comfortable being an introvert, right?

I’m comfortable. Yeah. But I’m also comfortable coming out of my skin and presenting over 100 people and teaching. So, you know, it’s. I don’t mind. I don’t want him to be choose one or the other. I think you can be both.

Just nail your communication skills. Right?

Exactly. Yeah. So important. I can’t really stress enough. Before I used to be saying communication with patients, but no communication in general. Full stop.

Massive believer in that, right? I mean what what what I, I mean, it’s something I’m incredibly passionate about when it comes to teaching. Right. And and for me, brevity and conciseness in communication. So you’re able to communicate complex subjects really simply that that is something to me that’s so important.

So I’ve written a second book on implants. So so it’s called Introduction to Implant Implant Restorations. And on the second page I have a quote from, um, what’s his name, the guy who said that, you know, if you can’t explain.

To a five year old Einstein.

If you can’t. Yeah. If you can’t explain to five year old you haven’t understood yourself enough. Yeah. And really genuinely explain it in that way. And I’ve been I’ve been given, you know, people have told me about the same thing. Like, it’s so easy to understand my book, the book and I’m and this is all despite of English is not my strength.

It’s amazing. It’s amazing. Right. So you, you, you come into the, you know, to your dental college just knowing Gujarati and running around throwing chemicals and savages all over the place. Right. And now you’re writing a book in English. Yeah. Not just one. Two. You’ve recorded an online course. You educate dentists. Yeah, in English. Um, I think it’s bloody amazing. Right. So. So you’ve. You’ve nailed communication as far as I’m concerned, especially if people are coming up to you and saying, Hey, not only are you teaching, but you’re doing it in a way that’s concise and easy to understand. Yeah. So yeah, and that’s.

A really, really good, that’s, that’s the that’s what I love to hear, you know, and that keeps me going to be honest. Okay, well, um, what’s the third.


Third is like a combination. I want him to learn how to run a business because this is something I wasn’t taught. And it’s so important to understand because even if you’re an associate dentist, you are running your own business. If that makes sense. Whatever you do, you are your own entity and at the end, enjoy whatever you do. Yeah. Not find what you enjoy. Like it’s okay to find what you enjoy, but you need to find an enjoyment into what you are doing as well. Like one day I was, I was washing dishes and I’m smiling and my wife’s like, Why are you smiling? You don’t even like washing dishes. I said, Well, I’m enjoying like, what’s the point? Like, I don’t like washing dishes, but, you know, I’m trying to enjoy it. You know, I’m thinking of something I’m enjoying. So it doesn’t have to be that, you know, you need to. Otherwise you’ll be waiting for your lifetime sometime to find something. What you love. You have to sometime just start doing things.

Enjoy, enjoy. Whatever it is you’re doing.

Exactly. Yeah. I’m sure there will be something you enjoy about.

And I think that what you’re saying like, you know, just just being at peace with the fact that, hey, I’m washing dishes, but I’m cool with that and it’s fun, right? I’m enjoying it. I think I think part and parcel of that they call that mindfulness or whatever, right. Is just maybe focusing on what you’re doing and thinking about it and just being content and happy. Right? Um, yeah. Amazing. And then, um. Fantasy dinner party.

Which never go to.

Which you never go to because you’re the introvert. Yeah, but let me just, just, just just think deeply about this. Yeah. Three people you could invite dead or alive. Who would they be?

Uh. Well have three disciplines. Probably so. And this is how I think would break things down. So I would break it down into dentistry. Dentistry, I’m really love the way Pascal Marnier teaches. So, you know, I would love to invite him and get to know him better, although I’ve been on his courses and you know, all the stuff. But yeah, it would be good to have him. Yeah. Then communication wise, I, I really like Tony Robbins the way he really understands people’s psychology and how people think and you know, all that. And I really would love to learn how he does it. Yeah. And thirdly, for life, my grandfather, he died when I still get I wasn’t as mature probably as I am now. I would be asking him different questions, you know, like he was a GP. And I’m sure like things gone wrong in the practice, I never felt like every time he came home it was the same guy. Like it was not like stressed or like, you know, frustrated. And I’m like that as well, like, But, you know, he he pulled it off. I mean, I learned from him. Yeah. You know, I never bring issues of work to home stays at work.

As a really good skill. It’s something that I something I definitely practice right and I work hard at which is leaving home at home and leaving work at work. And it’s something I really struggled with coming out of Covid because our whole agency went remote. And then I set up a home office and then I started working from home, right? And it was really, really hard for to not allow work to spill over into home life and home life to spill over into work. It was so tough, dude. I mean, I mean to the point where, you know, Prav comes in like 3 or 4 different incarnations, Right? And it’s true, right? So, so work Prav is a completely different beast to to Daddy Prav and husband. Prav Yeah, they are three completely different human beings and people. Yeah, but you know what I found during Covid? I was working from home. I had to I had to shift between those people in a second. In a second. Yeah. There was no time to decompress. There was. There was no. And so the reason why I’ve got an office now, which is a 20 minute drive from home and I go to work every day and I go to home every day, is that 20 minute decompression, whether it’s music, whether it’s a podcast, whether it’s thinking about, you know, walking through the girls and walking through the door and the girls just, you know, with their beaming smiles on their face and come and give me a hug and all the rest of it. It’s that separation and it’s something I really have to work on, you know, that that work life balance. What about.

You? Yeah, I’m not. Yeah. I mean, when I say stress, I leave the stress and the worries at home, but I’m. I still work from home because my teaching, my recording, everything still is from home. But my my son and my wife, they are they are used to that. And I guess I don’t want to take that completely away because I want my son to know that, you know, you’ve got to work hard. You can’t just, you know, have it everything without work.

I’m going to ask you a question that came up recently in our family, which is, look, I’m a hard worker, right? My my girls know me for working hard. And more recently, I’ve spent a few weekends away. Right. Which is not normal for me. Right? Very speaking engagements and stuff like that and teaching courses. So I’ve been away for a few weekends and my girls really don’t like that. Yeah. And they know that daddy works hard. And then and then there’s a lot of conversations with my six and eight year old. Why do you work hard? What’s the reason for you working? Why do you go to work? Etcetera, etcetera. Why don’t you work from home, blah blah, blah, and you give them the standard answers, right? It’s, you know, we have nice things, you know, I want you to have the best and blah, blah, blah and, and to give us all a better life and all the rest of it, Right? So. So you give them the standard answers and then they go away and they start thinking. And my wife said something to me the other day and she said. Would you really want your girls to be working as hard as you? Yeah.

Or do you want them to actually enjoy more of life? Yeah. Like what example are you setting them? And you know why that why I’m saying this right now is actually based on what you said about your grandfather being and everyone in your family being this that your brother works seven days a week. He works seven days a week. You know, no different, right? Like working seven days a week is normal in your household, right? Yeah. And I look at my wife and her family and she says to me, I’m the hardest working human being she’s ever met because all her family would be like, Hey, it’s dinnertime. It’s relaxed time. It’s home time. There’s no work now, right? Yeah. I have to work at that pace. Yeah. And I. And I do it. I manage it really well, but. But but I really have to work at it, right? And for me. And there’s no right or wrong with this. Right? I definitely don’t want my girls to pick up that habit and that trait from me. Yeah, okay. But, but but everyone’s different, right? And so what’s your take on that?

For me, the thing is, as far as for me, it’s not work. I can I have I’m privileged to. I can stop teaching completely. Yeah. And I can still live the way I am right now because I earn from clinical income. So money is not the motivation. I really genuinely enjoy the day I stop enjoying. The first thing I will stop doing is teaching. Yeah. Because it’s, you know, you have to enjoy. So that’s something I truly believe if you’re not enjoying it, there are so many things you can do to to make a living. Yeah, you don’t have to pull through. I always say that you need to give a chance a few years to make sure that, you know, you’re not just discarding it without giving your all, but if you give your all and you start not enjoying, then it’s not worth it. But this is something I always have discussion with my So in my house, you know, as an Indian parents, there is a common saying that money doesn’t grow on tree. Right.

It’s true.

It’s not it’s not allowed. So no one can say in the house that money doesn’t grow on tree. So I was watching a documentary. My son is big into docu. He doesn’t watch any movies at all. He watches documentary. So we were watching Very normal The Life in a lobby BBC documentary. So they go to a different hotel, a remote hotel, like a expensive hotel, and tell you what goes underneath it. And one of the hotel was like, one night was £7,800 for a night. And my son’s like, Oh, dad, it’s so expensive. I said, What? He’s like, We definitely can’t afford it. So I said, Well, I said, Do you like to go there? And he’s like, Yeah, I’d love to go there. So then you need to the way you need to think is you need to raise your standard. Does it make sense for for what is expensive for us, for Elon Musk? It’s not expensive. Does that make sense? So relative excess is relative. So if you want to go to that kind of a place, you just need to raise your standard. You need to be become that person who can afford it. That’s all. But you know, you need to stay away from material things. And that’s what I teach him as well. And he’s very good that good at that. So I think at least until now, I’ve done a good parenting. I don’t know, you know, these things can go like literally, you know, when they become 12, 13, 14, they have their own mind.

Yeah, look, it’s really interesting. And then and then with my older kids, you know, they go through that and then they go to uni, then they come back and they grow up and all this different person really interesting. And me and my wife have a lot of conversations around, you know, what’s the best advice to give children? What’s the best example, What’s the right way of doing it? And, you know, all these conversations about mental health and stuff like that, right? But there was one really powerful statement that my six year old made to me about three weeks ago. So, you know, whenever I talk to her about work and she’s why are you going away and stuff like that and she gets upset, um, you know, I can see the cogs ticking around in her head. Yeah. And she said this to me, and it hit me like a train. She said, Daddy, can you stop working until we’re poor again?

Oh, wow.

Yeah. And was like, fuck. Like, just. Just the. The innocence in that comment. And what that actually means is so powerful.

And this is same thing with my son. Like he knows my calendar better than my wife, so he knows what time I’m going to come home, which days I’m off. And I’ve slowed down a lot since after pandemic. Um, and that’s because of him. Because I want to spend time with him. I can work seven days, but I don’t because I want to spend time with him. And, you know, he’s. He’s our only child. So, you know, it’s that’s also a different. Yeah. But I think they deserve it. And I enjoy I enjoy everything I do right now. You know touch wood I’m I’m in such a amazing place where I enjoy a family time. I enjoy teaching. I enjoy working. Um, you know, in my practice, I’m gone back to doing a little bit general dentistry. I enjoy it. I enjoy seeing, you know, doing like class one cavity, which has been ages since I’ve done like a simple filling. But yeah, it’s good.

Brilliant. Well, Devin, thanks so much for your time. Thank you. What I’m going to do in the in the show notes as well is just put some links to your courses so that people can learn about you and your books and things like that. So please email everything across to me and I’ll, you know, I’ll link through to the books. And then if you when you publish the implant book as well, I’ll hopefully that will be a bestseller as well. And we can we can get that on there as well. But but thank you so much for your time today.

Thank you very much for inviting me. Thank you.

This is Dental Leaders, the podcast where you get to go one on one with emerging leaders in dentistry. Your hosts. Payman, Langroudi and Prav. Solanki.

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