KNOWLEDGE AND INNOVATION IN THE ART OF MAKING YOU SMILE
Located in Albufeira, the Cris Piessens Dental Clinic spotlights the most recent technological advancements. One of the most experienced authorities in the world of implantology, to guide, safeguard and rehabilitate the smiles of people of different nationalites.
Speaking of dental surgeon Cris Piessens is to make reference to one of the most notable names in the history of European dental implant surgery. A quick read of the high points of his career would be sufficient to certify the value of a truly unique life course. After earning a degree in dental surgery from the Université Libre of Brussels medical school, the owner of Cris Piessens Clinic sought to deepen his knowledge of the field of implantology, following the teachings of Professor Chantal Malevez – one of the pioneering authorities of the specialty, as well as one of the professors that had left a mark on the academic course of the young Belgian. Having had the privilege of assisting in the surgical procedures of Professor Chantal Malevez, he has made a point of focusing on the benefits of continuous training, characterized by his presence in courses and training programs that took him from his home country to such cities as Vienna, for example, (having attended the first course in surgery given by the first biocare Nobel) Amsterdam, and Los Angeles. A polyglot, traveller and always apt to expand his personal horizons, Cris Piessens performed his first implant surgery in 1987. Today, thirty years later, he has become an indisputable authority in this field.
Enchanted by the virtues of southern Europe, and taking full advantage of his linguistic skills, he came to the city of Albufeira – in the heart of the Algarve – where he chose to develop a clinic that has offered since 1992, the most sophisticated oral treatments, bolstered by the latest technology and the most recent advances in scientific training.
SENSITIVITY IN THE DOCTOR-PATIENT CONNECTION
“One thing I have to say is that the Portuguese are a very nice people and I never felt any difficulty being Belgian” recalls the clinical director, who made a point of mastering the language of Camões with the speed that always characterizes him. Along with the pleasant climate and hospitality that defines the Portuguese culture, from the outset, Cris Piessens Clinic became the choice for the tourist or for the foreign resident community who choose to settle in the South of Portugal, allowing the clinical staff and team of professionals to be able to understand different cultures” and to deal with the sensitivities and expectations that come with them.
This continuous interaction between the clinic’s staff – made up mostly of Portuguese who have benefited from work experience or training in foreign countries – and citizens from various parts of the globe allows, in turn, the healthy access to “inputs that come from abroad,” which may prove decisive for the evolution of the techniques and procedures offered here, to the extent that “this clinic also seeks what patients are looking for,” whether in the field of implantology, or in a number of other areas of intervention – including orthodontics, general and emergency dentistry, oral hygiene or teeth whitening.
It should be noted, for example, that investment in the conscious sedation techniques, or in devices like the Dental CBCT Scan was due to multicultural feedback. Also, focusing on providing excellent service in a context in which technological updates occur at an impressive speed, this is an area of oral health – in conjunction with the minimally invasive intervention protocols in implantology (such as the famous All-on-4) – it became a pioneer in the development of an exclusively equipped room for performing surgical procedures. Designed in honour of “an ethical conviction” that, in the opinion of the Medical Director should be mandatory, this is a space that guarantees the logistical conditions, hygiene and privacy ideal for the implementation of the more complex procedures.
As important, however, as the infrastructures or the sophistication in the diagnosis and treatment of problems in the oral cavity, is the connection Cris Piessens Clinic seeks to establish, from the first hour, with its patients. Never neglecting the “human component” that should be behind a work of this nature, the dialogues in consultation are characterised by informality and by the being at ease that only the expertise and thirty years of experience in giving the best implantology service allow.
“Listening to the person” is, therefore, a golden philosophy, comparable only to the desire that “the patients feel at home,” in particular through a cozily decorated waiting room.
PREVENT, TRAIN AND CHANGE MENTALITIES
Remembering that every patient should visit his dentist every six months, in an effort to “ensure” hygiene of the oral cavity and prevent the development of problems, Cris Piessens believes “the mentality of the population has evolved a lot” since the day he arrived in Albufeira. To prove it, the Clinical Director recalls the work that his team of hygienists has experienced and whose contribution has figured very much in the decisive development of new preventive habits.
Still, and remembering issues such as the diversity of socio-economic realities in the Algarve, our correspondent believes some attitudes “have yet to change”. It is in this context that Cris Piessens regrets the lack of a larger social support for dental treatments by the Portuguese government.
In this case, the development of initiatives such as the cheque-dentista do not allow the resolution of problems associated with the lack of oral health promotion or prevention in disadvantaged groups, since the treatment provided to children under this measure does not provide what he considers more valuable to an improvement in behaviour: “monitoring” of these same patients over time.
In addition, recalling being in contact with other locations and mentalities, Cris Piessens believes that an improvement of that panorama can only be reached when “the Portuguese government invests in prevention, whether through television or the schools.”
Furthermore, given the status of three decades of experience that its founder boasts, this is a clinic equipped with a room for vocational training in the context of which “clinical residencies”, around such themes as the aforementioned All-on-4 protocol treatment, revolve.
“I love to share my knowledge and my experiences,” explains Cris Piessens, before adding that these same programs are intended “for very small groups of four to six people”, combining the theoretical and practical components through the latest technological advancements.
Already thinking of the general population and patients in particular, Cris Piessens Clinic has been the star in some “info sessions”, under which the subject of implant surgery is addressed, as well as other services and benefits provided by this health facility. Carried out all over the Algarve, but also abroad, these correspond to initiatives that seek to enlighten the community about the fact that it is never too late to enhance the aesthetics, functionality and the well-being of one of the largest attributes that the human being has at its disposal: the radiant joy of a smile that expresses satisfaction.
This is an oral health space that – in conjunction with minimally invasive procedure protocols in the field of implantology (such as the well known All-on-4) – has pioneered the development of a room exclusively equipped for surgical procedures.
Taking a retrospective of a professional project that recently reached two and a half decades of longevity, Cris Piessens notes that it could not have been better, as “at that time, there were very few dentists who performed implant surgery and quickly won my place”.