Dentist has much to smile about
A leap of faith more than 20 years ago to trade life in a war-torn country for an arcade in Naenae has paid off in spades for Lower Hutt dentist Dr Hamid AlHassiny.
At age 29, he left Iraq with his wife and two sons in search of peace – which is exactly what he found in New Zealand.
What wasn’t going to change, however, was his love of dentistry.
Despite not knowing much English, Al-Hassiny passed the dentist accreditation exam – at a cost of $10,000 – needed in order to practice dentistry in New Zealand, and the rest is history.
His career has skyrocketed, with his dentistry practice in Naenae having celebrated its 15th anniversary.
‘‘At the time I had a lot of people saying it was the wrong decision, that I was investing in the wrong place, but I decided to go ahead with it and it was a great decision, he said.
‘‘I go to bed every night and I just want to wake up and come to work.’’
Not content with offering business-as-usual dentistry, AlHassiny has always sought to be on the cutting-edge of technology – which for him means CAD/ CAM.
An abbreviation for computeraided design and manufacturing, CAD/CAM is all about improving the design and creation of dental restorations, including crowns, veneers, dentures and more.
‘‘We used to use impressions – or moulds – which people would put in their mouth . . . They take time and the accuracy is not 100 per cent. These days it’s instant, we put cameras in the mouth and take [photos].’’
Dentists from throughout New Zealand and Australia, as well as more far-flung locations, often make the journey to train at his Naenae facility.
With training options on offer in such high demand, Al-Hassing has decided to expand significantly, opening a new multimillion-dollar facility specifically dedicated to digital dentistry training.
The Queens Arcade site, due to open in early 2020, will not only see more patients able to access innovative technology but will also see staff numbers double in size – from 30 to 60 people.
The development has the backing of Hutt City Council, which is pleased to see part of the CBD being modernised and utilised in a positive way.
‘‘It’s great to see a Naenae business expanding and providing employment opportunities for local people,’’ CBD development manager Cyndi Christensen said.
‘‘I go to bed every night and I just want to wake up and come to work.’’ Dr Hamid Al-Hassiny