Adopting the modern concept of minimally invasive cosmetic dentistry in his daily practice, Dr Melvin Sia, dentist and clinical director of M Dental Clinic, is on a mission to deliver dental treatment that can restore patient’s smile and function without compromising healthy tooth structure.
With increasing demands for dental cosmetic procedures, modern-day dentistry stressed the need for treatment modality that will not compromise the patient’s long-term oral health while fulfilling their wishes to have great smiles.
So, for practitioners like Dr Melvin Sia, a general dentist specialising in aesthetic and restorative dentistry, embracing the concept of minimally invasive treatments became his standard protocol.
From a kid who was afraid of dentists, he now manages his own dental practice in Petaling Jaya, Malaysia, aiming to deliver healthy and life-changing smiles.
Dr Sia has always wanted a profession that can change someone’s life. His initial thought was to become a medical doctor but chose the dental career to enjoy the work-life balance.
With his inclination for aesthetic and restorative dentistry, he continuously improves himself by attending numerous continuing education courses, allocating time to practice his carvings on typodont and reviewing his work constantly.
He strives for excellence and is motivated to find ways to improve himself further to provide high-quality treatments to his patients.Dr Sia is fascinated with the intricacy of tooth morphology and the uniqueness of each tooth.
While challenging to do so, being able to successfully recreate it gives him a great sense of accomplishment. But to achieve success in practice, Dr Sia highlights the need on having good communication skills too.
“Communicating well to your patient will allow them to have a better understanding of their dental issues and how your proposed
treatment plan can benefit them,” he explained.
In order to fully address patient’s complaints and expectations, it pays to be a good listener. Sensing the joy of his patients after treatment, and seeing how their brand-new smile boosts their confidence is what he considers the best part of his job.
LESS IS MORE
Dr Sia practices Minimally Invasive Cosmetic Dentistry (MiCD) to advocate a patient-centric “Do no harm” restorative approach.
In an article written by Dr Sushil Koirala, founder of MiCD global network, MiCD was defined as “a holistic approach that explores the smile defects and aesthetic desires of a patient at an early stage and treats them using the least intervention options in diagnosis and treatment technology by considering the psychology, health, function and aesthetics of the patient.”
With this modality, Dr Sia divides his treatment protocol into three phases:
Phase I – understand: to recognise the problem by performing a detailed dental examination and come out with a well-thought treatment plan
Phase II – achieve: to execute the planned treatment, either rejuvenate, restore, or rehabilitate
Phase III – keep in touch: to follow up on patients and appoint them for review; re-evaluate and repair as needed
On top of this, he also employs four levels of intervention: non-invasive, micro invasive, minimally invasive and invasive.
“I always begin with a non-invasive approach, which is education. It’s part of our job to educate our patients on proper oral health care and maintenance,” he explained.
Micro invasive procedure in his aesthetic work includes whitening and resin infiltration while minimally invasive treatment covers restorative work with composite and less- or minimum-prep veneers.
In addition to his hard-earned skills, this novel approach to treatment ensures the quality of Dr Sia’s work by complementing it with reliable materials and technology.
He shared, “I can’t work without my loupes and my microscope. Microscope allows me to see better not only during root canal treatment, but also during my direct and indirect restorative work. It allows my preparations to be more precise so I can preserve more tooth structure.”
His current favourite instrument set is the LM Arte composite instrument kit, which he considers crucial in doing his restorations. Other essentials include stick resins from GC and rubber dam by Sanctuary. He also uses Shofu Beautifil II LS, Tokuyama Palfique Asteria, and Micerium Ena Hri.
Also, his clinic is equipped with a cone-beam computed tomography (CBCT) system to allow him to make more accurate diagnosis.
Digitalising his practice in the near future is already in the plan as he believes that intraoral scanner and in-house milling machines can benefit his patients further.