It’s our first day at the orphanage in Karbala. The morning started with the dental team unpacking and setting up our makeshift clinic, in Najaf we were lucky to have a dental room with adequate equipment such as dental chairs that made it easier to practice, however this wasn’t the case at the orphanage, but all the dentists worked with whatever they had without complaining.
One of the challenges that we came across with the students was their lack of oral hygiene. We made sure we gave oral hygiene instructions to all the students that we came across, along with a toothbrush and toothpaste and all the students were happy with their new goodies!
The second day was a very busy day at the clinic, once we finished seeing the older students it was the turn of the younger ones. One of the issues we found was that the younger ones were scared, and it was very difficult to check or treat them, so rather than increase their anxiety we just made sure we gave the oral health information and hoped that when we come back next time, they’ll have warmed up to us. Once the other healthcare professionals had finished seeing their patients we were advised to start packing away as we were going back to the hotel. However, we had many students that hadn’t been seen and therefore the dental team decided to stay back and see all the remaining patients, the dental team all agreed today was our best day so far.
By Fateema S