Shameer Nisa is a multi-talented dental technician from Kings College, London. Specialising as a maxillofacial prothesis technician (MPT), a clinical dental technician (CDT), and former lecturer, Shameer has built his career with a genuine passion for dental technology.
What attracted you to the field of dental technology?
After coming out of secondary school, I was never academic. However, I had a passion for art and I enjoyed creating things with my hands. Finding out there was a career where I could create something, using all types of different methods and materials and it could have a major impact on someone’s life, was definitely a big draw for me to get into the world of dental technology.
What company are you with now?
I currently work at Kings College Hospital London.
What is your (preferred) job title?
I have a few, currently I am working as a maxillofacial prothesis technician (MPT), but I am also a qualified clinical dental technician (CDT) and former lecturer of dental technology.
What is a typical (or not so typical) day-in-the-work-life for you?
It can vary from day to day. Some days I will be at the bench, setting up obturators, waxing up noses, fingers, painting eyes or segmenting and printing cranio 3D models and constructing titanium cranio plates. On other days I could be in orthognathic clinic discussing patient cases or in our maxillofacial clinic taking facial or ocular impressions, dental impressions and face bows, or reviewing patients. Some days I could also be called to observe surgery or request to stay late to deal with a trauma case.
How did you get your current job?
Having worked at Kings in the prosthetic department with my CDT qualification, as well as a teaching qualification and completing my MSc, a position became available in the maxillofacial department. I applied, interviewed and was successful.
What skills came easily to you, and what skills took longer to learn?
If I was being honest, although I was very artistic I still struggled with most areas of dental technology when I first started. I am still always learning, as there are always new techniques and ways to make an appliance, however I honestly feel my passion and skills lie with prosthetics, from chromes to everyday dentures.
What advice do you have for others wanting to be successful and fulfilled in their dental technology career?
I would always say, persevere and never say anything bad about your fellow professionals, we are a small cohort and word travels fast.
I believe everyone brings something to the table. Whether you agree or disagree, take what works for you, but listen to what others have to offer, you never know, it may come in useful eventually. Lastly, enjoy what you do and take pride in it.
If you could be paid for your job with something other than a pay cheque, what would it be?
If money wasn’t an option, I would have to say that having the opportunity to see first-hand and help so many patients with my devices. Seeing a patient happy and getting their lives back on track is one of the best feelings I could ever ask for. As cheesy as it sounds, patient happiness and satisfaction is a great alternative.
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