Military Dentistry: Terrain, Trends and Training Paramjit Singh, Vimal Arora
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1MILITARY DENTISTRY: Terrain, Trends and Training2
3MILITARY DENTISTRY: Terrain, Trends and Training
Maj Gen Paramjit Singh AVSM VSM** Addl Dir Gen Dental Services Army Headquarters New Delhi Brig Vimal Arora VSM Commandant & Command Dental Advisor Northern Command C/O 56 APO
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Military Dentistry: Terrain, Trends and Training
© 2005, Paramjit Singh, Vimal Arora
All rights reserved. No part of this publication should be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means: electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without the prior written permission of the authors and the publisher.
First Edition : 2005
Typeset at JPBMP typesetting unit
Printed at Paras Offset Pvt Ltd., C 176 Naraina Industrial Area, Phase I, New Delhi-110028
As this millennium is spreading its wings, we find ourselves flooded with an incredible volume of information about the events, discoveries and newer techniques. Our ideological pool continues to expand exponentially as we the providers of the dental care continue to read, discuss, critically analyse, practice and report about the current systems with a view to evolve the optimum.
Armed Forces the world over are uniquely different in many ways and so are their health care delivery systems. Nevertheless, the treatment strategies everywhere are constantly being reviewed and modified by the dental professionals to make dentistry safer, predictable, practical and in tune with the newer techniques evolving from the vast research and development efforts.
Military Dental Services worldwide are responsible for providing dental health cover to their combatants and dependant clientele. Ecological, environmental, Service and psychological factors may adversely affect the oro-dental health of troops compromising their effective deployment, functional efficiency and well being. This makes the role of Dental services important and challenging. Injuries of the maxillofacial region constitute a demanding management task from first aid and evacuation to definitive treatment and functional rehabilitation. This necessitates a well structured, organised and integrated system of health care which constitutes the hallmark of the military dentistry.
With this in mind, it was decided to bring out an informative manuscript describing the genesis, growth and treatment strategies of military dentistry in India while providing glimpses of the international military dental service scenario.
To the best of my knowledge, this is the first time that such an accrual of information about military dentistry has been presented in a colourful book format anywhere. The book provides a comprehensive insight about military dentistry in the national and international perspective. I am indeed hopeful that this will receive due acclaim from the professionals, the members of the Armed Forces and by the general public alike.
I dedicate this book to the ‘ARMY DENTAL CORPS’, and place on record the concerted efforts by the authors who could achieve this Herculean task in such a short span of time.
Lt Gen RC Dhir
Dir Gen Dental Services
Army Headquarters
New Delhi6
Since the inception of Army Dental Corps, there has been no comprehensive account of the horizons of Dental Services involving the organisation, delivery of dental services and the specialised care, including the modalities and techniques being followed in today's scenario.
It was envisaged to bring out a comprehensive manuscript containing the complete account of dental services being provided to the combatants and dependents and how the Corps has adapted itself to achieve this goal. The thought process behind this venture was to have a book, which is of equal interest to the militaries across the globe and to the young dental officers regarding the intricacies of the functioning of the Corps.
A golden opportunity came upon when the Federation Dentaire Internationale approached the AD Corps, India to host the World Military Dental Congress in the meeting of the Section Defence Forces Dental Services. This onerous task was embarked upon by me and Brigadier Vimal Arora, VSM, Command Dental Advisor (Northern Command) to put together all relevant subjects including the past, present and future of the Corps.
This book is a result of a dedicated effort in a very short span of time of just three months. I acknowledge the excellent contributions by the International Dental Services, who have provided an insight regarding the functioning of their dental branches in their respective countries. Due to paucity of time, we could only gather information about 13 countries, which I am sure will be of tremendous benefit to all the militaries engaged in keeping their combatants fighting fit.
At this juncture, I will be failing in my duties if I do not place on records my grateful thanks to Lt Gen JR Bhardwaj, AVSM VSM PHS, Director General Armed Forces Medical Services, India for allowing us to compile this information in the form of a book.
Lt Gen RC Dhir, Director General, Dental Services, India had been guiding personality throughout the writing of this volume and I would like to place on record his constructive criticism, painstaking and methodical editing as well as his experienced valuable suggestions during the course of writing this book. At this juncture, I also wish to convey sincere admiration and regard for my ex-Directors and other senior dental officers whose foresight and vision was the main guiding influence in giving a shape to this book. I hope this book will form an excellent basis for taking up future ventures of this kind.
Maj Gen Paramjit Singh, AVSM VSM**8
It is indeed a great honour and a privilege for me to put this book before you on the occasion of World Military Dental Congress, meeting of the Section Defence Forces Dental Services under the aegis of FDI organised by the Army Dental Corps, India.
Having been exposed to the adversity and tribulations of service in the Armed Forces during the last 27 years, I realised that the military dental services all over the world have a lot in common. The fighting forces may differ but the requirements of the combatants regarding the dental needs remain almost the same in a war theatre. It is to explore these common grounds and to share common knowledge and experiences with the military faculties the world over, that this book has been evolved in its present form and the theme, ‘Terrain, Trends and Training’ has been formulated.
The remarkable efforts put in by our colleagues across the globe and within the country, who have contributed to enhance the scope and value of this book is gratefully acknowledged. As will be evident to the readers, this small text aims to generate awareness about the contributions of dental surgeons to the military across a vast geographical panorama. The book extends its scope further by delving into the current opinions and status of treatment modalities among the dental surgeons, with a special emphasis on relevance to practice in an environment of ‘conflict’.
The book has been divided into two parts—the International and the Indian. The International section deals with the Dental Services of various countries including that of India and has been arranged in an alphabetical manner. The Dental Services of Indian Army, Navy and Air Force, however have been presented in the beginning as the book basically delves mainly into the realms of Indian scenario. The National section deals with relevant topics under various heads like Organisation and personnel, Delivery of Dental services, Modalities of specialised care, Research and development, Veteran care and Infection control protocol. The Delivery of Dental Services deals with the norms of dental care as applicable to Indian Dental Services and the modalities of providing the same. Specialised care to all combatants in war and peace has been covered extensively under the Modalities of Specialised care. A new beginning by the Armed forces by starting Ex-service Man Contributory Health Scheme has been covered under Veteran Care along with Resettlement, though strictly speaking, resettlement is not within the domain of the Army Dental Corps. Giving due consideration to the present day 10scenario of asepsis and surgical protocol, special chapters on Infection Control and Waste Management have been added.
I must acknowledge the guidance and support provided by Lt Gen RC Dhir, the DGDS for conceptualizing this book. I also place on record the contributions of Maj Gen Paramjit Singh, AVSM VSM** who envisioned the book and was the instigating personality for me to take up a venture of this magnitude.
Constant references have been drawn from the book ‘The Army Dental Corps’ written by Maj Gen PC Kochhar, AVSM which is the first single comprehensive account of the Dental Services of India and happens to be the one of the finest pieces of work. His book has been a great help throughout writing this manuscript.
I express my personal thanks and gratitude to Lt Col IP Majithia, Lt Col Narinder Singh, Maj SK Roy Chowdhury, Maj DSJ D'Souza for their dedicated support and untiring efforts and the PG students of AFMC for their contributions during the course of writing this book which ‘made a difference’.
Brig Vimal Arora, VSM