With both his parents working as dentists, it’s not all that surprising that Dr Daniel Leung decided to follow in his family's footsteps and become a dentist himself. Now based at the National Dental Care Sunnybank practice, we chatted to Dr Leung about what he enjoys about his role, what attracted him to the practice, and the qualities he strives for as a dentist.
Dr Leung, tell us a bit about your background and how you got into dentistry
As both my mum and dad are dentists, I’ve literally been exposed to dentistry my whole life! I grew up around the Sunnybank area and would often visit the Sunnybank practice (now NDC Sunnybank) - both for dental appointments and for work-related trips with my parents. During high school, my career aspirations were always targeted towards the health field. I initially began studying Physiotherapy at university, but after much deliberation and talking to professionals in the fields of physiotherapy, medicine, and dentistry, I decided that dentistry was best suited to me for a long-term career.
What do you like most about dentistry?
I enjoy the fact that dentistry is one of the few professions where we can assess, diagnose, and treat conditions all as a single practitioner, often within the same appointment. I find the hands-on component of dentistry extremely satisfying. Having the ability to essentially cure a significant issue for a patient, often within a short timeframe, provides me reassurance that my profession is truly improving the wellbeing of the broader community.
What attracted you to the Sunnybank practice? What are you looking forward to about working here?
During my time at university, I spent around two years working at the Sunnybank practice as a dental assistant. I really got to understand how the clinic operated and was able to make many great connections with the dentists and other practice staff. The patient flow is excellent - and as a very well-established practice in the area, the clinic is extremely optimised for success. The combination of familiarity and significant options for mentorship makes the Sunnybank practice perfectly suited to what I’m looking for as a new graduate to develop myself as a clinician.
What qualities do you feel it’s important for a dentist to have?
I believe dentists really need to have a true sense of empathy. Many patients who see us come in severe pain or discomfort, and I think it’s of huge importance that we as dentists can show our patients that we truly understand and take their concerns seriously.
From a clinical point of view, I believe having a high level of attention to detail is important for achieving clinical excellence. Our work is very technique sensitive, and optimisation of every little step in each procedure can have a huge effect on the outcome of treatment.
What do you enjoy doing outside of work?
I’m a big fan of sports - in my downtime, I enjoy playing indoor volleyball, tennis and basketball. I play in Brisbane-based club competitions for both tennis and volleyball, which allows me to have significant goals outside of my working life.
I also enjoy going to the gym, reading, watching Netflix and eating lots!
Finally, what’s your number one oral hygiene tip?
Switch to an electric toothbrush! The smaller head size and self-oscillating motion can help anyone reach notoriously neglected areas of the mouth that are very difficult to access with a normal manual toothbrush. It also takes a lot of the individual technique variability out of brushing.