Journal of Interdisciplinary Dentistry

: 2016  |  Volume : 6  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 101--102

Dental education in India

Hasan Sarfaraz 
 Department of Implantology, Yenepoya Dental College, Yenepoya University, Mangalore, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Hasan Sarfaraz
Department of Implantology, Yenepoya Dental College, Yenepoya University, Mangalore, Karnataka

How to cite this article:
Sarfaraz H. Dental education in India.J Interdiscip Dentistry 2016;6:101-102

How to cite this URL:
Sarfaraz H. Dental education in India. J Interdiscip Dentistry [serial online] 2016 [cited 2022 Oct 3 ];6:101-102
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Full Text


Dental care in India has evolved from a discipline that helps in the alleviation of pain and discomfort to an art and science of restoring ailing dentition and improving facial aesthetics by designing beautiful smiles. Dental aesthetics has become a popular topic among all disciplines in dentistry. The advancements in dental materials over the past several decades have been impressive; it is now possible to restore mutilated or missing teeth with high efficiency and effectiveness. We can now treat patients with more economical and conservative material and methods. When an extensive restoration is sought by a patient for improving the health and aesthetic appearance of a patient's teeth, the clinician must have a consistent diagnostic approach that results in the appropriate treatment plan. With most patients, the restorative dentist cannot accomplish the correction alone but may require the assistance of other dental disciplines. The Indian Society of Prosthodontics-Restorative-Periodontics was formed with this rational in mind to bring all the restorative disciplines of dentistry in India on one platform and bring about the paradigm shift in the way restorative dentistry is taught, learnt, and practiced in this country.The role of dentistry in providing an acceptable appearance cannot be ignored; scientific research and clinical trials have demonstrated the benefits of adhesive restorative dentistry and how it eliminates some of the adversities of conventional restorative dentistry. It is time our profession must recognize that the clinical parameters put forward by G V Black more than 100 years ago, and similarly by many others who had gathered knowledge and set standards, may not be as relevant in the current era of minimally invasive dentistry, bonded restoration, computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing restorations and implant prosthesis. The profession should be prepared to move on, the teaching of dentistry and indeed the practice of dentistry is about managing these transitions, irrelevant standards should now be confined to history and the new revolutionary techniques or paradigm adopted.

Unfortunately, these shifts cannot be sudden; therefore, we must consider incorporating them gradually into our educational curriculum. The current syllabus and teaching methodology reveals the difficulty that all learners have in making links between the loads of information that are actually connected but are taught in different sections at different times. This problem is complicated by the modular style of education. The field of dentistry has in fact an array of information, and it seems to be taking longer for students to establish the links and to integrate the information. Students seem to finish 1 year of study and pass on to the next, relegating the knowledge gathered in the past year to the filing cabinet, without realizing the importance of the continuity of dental education.

It is time that we adopt an integrated approach that attempts to encourage students to develop that link and help them to make reliable diagnosis that results in the appropriate treatment plan. The new methodology should try to balance the old tried, tested materials and techniques with the conservative and contemporary ones. It should try regularly to update the curriculum with developments in materials without losing track on the basic techniques that have served our patients well and will continue to do so. The days of ideal Class II cavity preparations and removable partial dentures may be a thing of past, but not until many more dentists are trained in the use of bonded restorations and dental implants.