He is Vice-Principal and Head of Department of Dental Materials, Assistant Dean of Department of Medical Education, Medical Administrator and Chief Proctor at the Riphah International University, Islamabad.
Dr Yawar completed his BDS from de’Montmorency College of Dentistry, Lahore, in 1999. He, later on, went to England to pursue his postgraduation, Master of Sciences (MSc.) in Dental Materials from the Queen Mary University of London. In 2012, Dr Yawar completed Masters in Health Professions Education from Maastricht University with flying colours.
Dr Yawar’s extraordinary professional résumé includes his services as Director Centre of Excellence in Leadership, Innovation & Quality (CLIQ) and Member Advisory Board Curriculum Committee & Program Coordinator (MSLDE) at Ras Al Khaimah College of Dental Sciences (RAKCODS), Ras Al Khaimah, UAE. He is also appointed as the Director of the Academy of Leadership Sciences (ALSS), Switzerland.
In recognition of more than 19 years of experience in teaching and management, Dr Yawar has also been awarded the International TMA Certified Professional and Membership of Asia Pacific Biomedical Science Educators Association (APBSEA), Singapore. He is also a member of Harvard Business Review (HBR), Advisory Council, USA. Dr Yawar is also an Ambassador at the International Association of Medical Science Educators (IAMSE), Pakistan, California, USA.
Dr Yawar recently spoke to Dental News about his experience in the field of dentistry; an excerpt of which is as follows
What motivated you to join dentistry?
Well, to be honest, it was more of a fate than a choice but alhamdulillah enjoying it passionately. I always wanted to be a doctor as I wanted to help others and wanted to make a difference in their lives by any means. I got admission to MBBS first, but meanwhile, when I was waiting for the revised lists, I joined de Montmorency College of Dentistry in transition, and it became my destiny very quickly. I was touched when I saw patients being treated and, in return showing their affection in the form of prayers. Dentistry, I think, is a profession in which if you can treat the patient successfully, the pain goes right away, and the patient is relieved.
Apart from this, I would like to mention another reason the first lecture by respected Dr Nazia Yazdani (Prosthodontist) was a real motivation. She immensely helped me to decide about my future.
Research has given me a good vision of how to correlate the clinical findings with the best evidence-based practices
You are currently doing PhD in Medical Education from University Ambrosiana. Can you share with us about your research and what have you found?
Yes, after doing my first Master’s in Dental Materials from the Queen Mary University of London, I went on to do my second master’s in Health Professions Education from Maastricht University and finally got enrolled in my PhD in Health Professions Education (Medical Education) at the University Ambrosiana, Italy. I am almost about to finish my PhD Insha Allah in few months. In my dissertation, I have done a curricular innovation by introducing a module, Behavioral management, Leadership and Patient safety (BeLP), at the undergraduate level (3rd Year) right from the start of the clinical rotations of undergraduate students. I am in the process of collecting data right now. Still, from the initial findings, it is interesting that if these important domains are taught in a structured manner to the undergraduate students, it greatly impacts their transformation from traditional learners and practitioners to lifelong learners and critical thinkers. It also enhances their knowledge, skills and attitudes, especially when it comes to pediatric patients, patients with disabilities and so-called difficult patients. I would share more Insha Allah once I am done with it.
How much has research played a part in the uplifting of your dental career?
Research has been a great tool for professional development in any profession. In dentistry, it has multiple benefits as it allows the individual to think critically and allows the dentist to develop a deeper understanding of the biosocial underpinnings of the profession. It has certainly helped me a lot as well and being a clinician, it has given me a good vision of how to correlate the clinical findings with the best evidence-based practices.
If important domains are taught in a structured manner to the undergraduate students, it greatly impacts their transformation from traditional learners and practitioners to lifelong learners and critical thinkers
As you have studied dental materials, do you foresee any new materials being developed shortly?
Well, as we speak, there are continuous developments in the dynamic field of dental materials. The technologies being introduced into dentistry enable greater precision, productivity and time savings than methods from generations past. They also enable clinicians to undertake new procedures, develop new materials and accomplish their goals in innovative ways.
Ever since the development of composites in the 1960s and the introduction of CAD/CAM in the 1980s, has there been such an exciting time of innovation in dentistry. Researchers, manufacturers, scientists and practitioners are welcoming new and emerging technologies from 3D printing and self-healing teeth to non-chemical disinfectants and digital scanning, all of which have the potential to transform in meaningful ways how dentistry is practised.
In your opinion, do you think any material will become obsolete shortly? If one student wants to pursue dental materials, what is to be expected?
It can be hard to keep up with emerging technologies and innovations in the healthcare world. One particular material I would like to mention in this context is the silver fillings. Silver fillings are quite misleadingly named since they consist of about 50% mercury. The World Health Organization (WHO) says that 53% of the mercury emissions found in our environment are due to these fillings and other laboratory devices. In dentistry, the filling material is called amalgam. Although there are conflicting reports on how safe its use is in dentistry, there’s simply no reason to continue using it. Resin, tooth-coloured material is widely available for fillings and possesses better and safer physical properties without the danger of a toxic substance. Many dentists are so concerned about the potential toxic vapours constantly emitted from amalgam fillings that they remove and replace them with safer and esthetically pleasant materials.
I was touched when I saw patients being treated and, in return showing their affection in the form of prayers
Throughout your professional journey, what skills and knowledge have helped you the most in your career, and how did you build this toolkit?
In my particular case, it is only due to the blessings of Allah SWT and the prayers of my parents, teachers, and my family’s support. However, they say that there is no shortcut to success, and I agree with it. You have mentioned a nice word toolkit, it is good to have one with you, but it should be equipped with appropriate and useful tools. Apart from the professional ones, a few important tools essential for any professional to grow are teamwork, professionalism, empathy, leadership, work ethics, sound communication skills and effective interpersonal skills.
Always remember that your smile can be a source of motivation and a powerful healer for your patients
Any important message for young dentists?
Firstly, I want to suggest that our young dentists should not consider any shortcuts to success. Work hard with passion and motivation, set your goals, put in all your efforts, monitor your performance, believe in yourself and pray to Allah SWT to accomplish your vision. Always remember that your smile can be a source of motivation and a powerful healer for your patients. It is nice to be important, but it is more important to be nice as a dentist. Love what you do and try to improve yourself continuously with every passing day and keep on striving for excellence in all your endeavours as, “The road to success is always under construction”.