I come from a family of physicians, I excelled at school, especially in the sciences, and was intent on working in the medical field. The reason I chose dentistry was that I possess a strong esthetic sense and understood from an early age the importance of a smile. I was also personally aware of the fear that a visit to the dentist engenders, especially in children, and knew that I had the ability to form a rapport with them to elicit trust and confidence. I am a well-qualified and experienced pediatric practitioner, teacher and researcher with a passion for treating special needs child patients and for educating, especially the young, in preventative oral and dental regimes. I can assure the reader that I shall apply myself with exceptional diligence and enthusiasm and seek to ‘add value’ from my significant experience to the program, if selected for your distinguished residency program in Pediatric Dentistry.
My work in research and with special needs, and especially, autistic children has been very satisfying and it was doubtful that I would make this application to enable me to practice in the US. However, I have become aware of the shortage of dentists who specialize in treating such children and feel a strong desire to be part of the solution to this problem.
I obtained my MDS at the prestigious Chaudhary Charan Singh University in Meerut, India. My thesis related to the prevalence of oral mucosal lesions in children and adolescents and my library dissertation related to behavior management in pediatric dentistry. I enjoy research and feel that I have the characteristics and skills that make a good researcher. I am determined; capable of analytical, original and creative thinking; able to set realistic but challenging goals and happy to collaborate with others to achieve common aims. The awards made to me and my published research will provide an assurance of my ability, commitment and academic achievements and potential. I am especially interested in assisting in research into early childhood caries and sleep bruxism.
Having completed my MDS, I taught dentistry at two colleges. I greatly enjoyed teaching and received excellent feedback from students and faculty. There are few things more satisfying than seeing a student master a complex concept after a struggle to do so, and I was attracted to the life of an academic. However, I missed patient contact and decided that practicing was significantly more satisfying than teaching.
I was appointed Consultant Pediatric Dentist at the Rainbow Children’s Hospital in Hyderabad in October 2015. I was very fortunate to be working with an exceptionally caring, skilled and experienced supervisor, Dr. Srinivas Namineni, who is now the President of the Indian Society of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry. I treated a wide range of conditions mainly in children with ‘special needs’ and learned a great deal about overcoming the psychological obstacles to treating such child patients. I learned that ‘one size fits all’ is not a concept that can be applied with such patients and that a personalized approach to each unique patient was necessary and I learned to apply a range of techniques to gain cooperation and to achieve optimum outcomes.
I had never doubted the importance of preventive dentistry but my experience at the Rainbow Hospital fired a passion in me for this subject. Treating preventable disease in young children is frustrating and I have done as much as I am able to encourage regular dental and oral hygiene regimes, especially in the young when life-long habits can be formed most easily. I feel so strongly on the subject that I have a Facebook page dedicated to this topic.
I moved to the US when my husband was offered a position here with Google. Shortly after our arrival, I decided to volunteer my expertise and time to the Autism Center of America and soon thereafter was offered an appointment as a Research Assistant in the Psychophysiology Lab. at Stanford University where I am still employed.
The strong esthetic sense that drew me to dentistry is reflected in my hobbies of portrait photography, drawing and dance. I have happily worked and socialized with people of many ethnic and social backgrounds. I enjoy learning about other cultures and sharing my own rich cultural heritage.
Thank you for considering my application.