How Temping as a Dental Nurse led to me becoming a Hygienist

22 May 11:00 by Fahinma Begum

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Fahima’s story


Here at DRN we have proudly been working with Fahima for 7 years now. Fahima won our ‘Temp Nurse of the year award’ back in 2012. Watching her progression from Dental Nurse to Dental Hygienist has been truly remarkable.


Why did you decide to temp?


I had been working in my practice for 3 years as a lead Dental Nurse and felt there was no room for progression.

I was keen to study towards becoming a Hygienist, but to do this I needed to enrol on an access course in order to meet the entry requirements.

Studying meant that I would need to work part time, but there were very few part time dental nursing positions available to me.

That is when an agency nurse called Lien came into our practice and was raving about temping through DRN. She told me how much she enjoyed working at different practices and meeting many different people through temping.

She was a keen advocate of DRN and was telling me how the team were very friendly, professional and fun to work with.

Another big draw for me was that I knew DRN supplied most of the high-end practices in London, which would be a massive help for my work experience in becoming a Dental Hygienist.


What was your favourite part of temping?


A big draw for me was the flexibility, there was so much freedom to choose and accept work around my studies.

I also experienced working for lots of different practices, which gave me a feel for the type of practice I would like to work for in the future.

Another plus point is that you don’t get dragged into the daily politics of a permanent position. If you don’t like a certain practice, I would just inform DRN and they would stop sending me there.

Through temping with DRN, I also managed to secure a permanent position. I had temped at the practice a few times before, which meant I knew it was the right practice for me.

Temping definitely gave me a platform to further my career and pursue my Dental Hygiene studies with the support of DRN.


What was the most challenging aspect of temping?


Sometimes finding a new practice was difficult, but as long as you prepared your route and allowed plenty of time, it is never a problem.

Also, familiarising yourself with a new practice for the first time can be a bit of a challenge at times, for example, knowing where materials and stock are kept. Again, having the opportunity to work in different settings is what I liked the most.


What made you decide to study towards becoming a Hygienist?


Again, through temping with DRN at various practices it only reinforced my ambition to qualify as a Dental Hygienist. It made me realise the benefits of working independently with your own set of patient. I understood this through a strong network of Hygienist friends that I built temping through DRN.

I was awarded the DRN “Temp Nurse of The Year”.  This was a very proud moment for me and I received a lot of praise from the various practices that I temp at.  This gave me a massive confidence boost and only spurred me on to further purse hygiene.

Whilst temping I completed the Access to HE Diploma in Science in order to meet the entry requirements for the Dental Hygiene studies which I passed successfully with distinctions.

I also did the Oral Health Education & Promotion at Queen Mary’s to further my knowledge and commitment in my chosen field.

To add to my CV I also volunteered for CRISIS, the national

charity working for single homeless people providing services as a dental nurse and now a hygienist. Talking and empathising with the ‘guests’ is both moving and enjoyable.

I was finally accepted to study FdSc Oral Health Science at University of Essex, which I was extremely happy about.

I strongly feel that that it was not for the support and opportunities given to me by DRN I wouldn’t be in this position