I knew Pn Sarinatul since I was in high school. She was my senior, a kind, soft-spoken person and respected by many. After more than 20 years I reunited with her when she came to the clinic for removal of her wisdom tooth. Not exactly the kind of reunion you would be looking forward to! And she was fated to see me a few times as her recovery was not as smooth as expected. Thankfully, she recovered and I am grateful that I am still her friend!

Pn Sarinatul asked me whether she could bring her children for dental check ups. She told me her first and third daughters are Special Needs children. I told her she was more than welcome to do so as KPF do treat Special Needs or SPICES as we call them. Dr Fauziah has been treating the children for more than 20 years now. I have seen the children that came to see her and some of them have become grown ups. It is amazing watching Dr Fauziah managed the children; friendly and stern at times, she does have her way with making them comply. I have to admit, for the past 10 years or so; the patients I saw were mainly in the adult age group. My experience with treating children is minimal let alone with special needs children. But I still encouraged her to bring her children because as part of KPF, it is also my responsibility to treat them.

It was an experience treating Pn Sarinatul’s children. I started off with her second daughter, Yasmeen as a model to the other two. The eldest, Farheen seemed very much interested to watch and came as close as she possibly could to us whilst the youngest, Dania seemed withdrawn. Yasmeen was an excellent model as she was very compliant and that really helped with managing Farheen. In fact, Farheen was so eager to get on the dental chair that I did not even need to invite her! She sat immediately after Yasmeen got up. I was pleased that she too was compliant in spite of her curiosity and inquisitive manner. I adopted Dr Fauziah’s counting 1 to 5 method when cleaning her teeth and the procedure went very smoothly.

However, I was not successful with the youngest, Dania. She cried and refused to sit on the dental chair. Pn Sarinatul was very supportive in getting her to sit on the chair but Dania only succumbed to sitting on her mother’s lap. She was still crying when I tried to check her teeth and that was all I managed to do for her that day. Pn Sarinatul told me that Dania was scared because she had a bad dental experience in the past. When she was first  brought to the dentist a few years ago, she had to have one of her tooth pulled out. Therefore, she was traumatized. I reassured Pn Sarinatul that she was right to bring Dania along because the more she is exposed to a dentist, the better she will be to overcome her fear. For her to open her mouth and let me had a look was good enough as a start.

As a routine KPF will always reward every child that comes here therefore, all three of them were given balloons (made of gloves with faces being drawn on it =D) and stickers. They were all feeling cheery! I was grateful that Pn Sarinatul really cares for their dental health and very much aware of maintaining good oral hygiene for her children. I felt happy for them.

Till we meet again…in 4 months time.

~ Dr Yana (yana@story.drfauziah.com)

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