Dentistry Top 50 – the 2020 results

Dentistry Top 50Every year, asks readers to vote for the most influential person in UK dentistry. The way the world is being influenced is changing rapidly, with social media and popular culture now vying with traditional academic and political leadership for impact on peers.

The influence of the names on this list could be clinical, academic, political, or more community-driven thanks to social media. Remember, it’s completely down to what the individual feels is most significant to them. The results make for interesting reading – but who will be voted number one? Read on to find out our readers’ choice!

Top 41-50

  • 50. Fiona Ellwood BEM – chair of the National Oral Health Promotional Group

Top 31-40

  • 40. Dev Patel – founder of Brushlink and joint founder of Dental Circle

Top 21-30

  • 30. Affan Saghir – Instagram sensation offering modern smile makeovers

Top 11-20

  • 20. Kishan Patel – Kishan’s Dentistry Award win in late 2019, where he picked up Best Young Dentist South East, simply confirmed what his followers already knew – that this passionate and talented individual is one to watch

Top 10

10. Tony Kilcoyne – Tony’s professional career has many faces, from lecturing to VT and foundation training, but he is perhaps most well-known for his passionately-held views on NHS dentistry, where his letters to The Times decrying the state of the nation have become an annual call to arms for many in the dental profession


9. Anna Middleton – better known to many as the London Hygienist, Anna’s decision to talk directly to patients about their oral health has been the foundation for a wildly successful business and social media profile, making dental hygiene a topic worth not just discussing but championing – and Anna a regular contributor to places like Elle magazine and The Daily Mail


8. Shiraz Khan – arguably the best-dressed man in dentistry, Shiraz boasts a sense of style as sharp as his dancing – but it’s in the surgery that he truly stands out, where his stunningly photographed clinical work speaks for itself to earn him a reputation as a sought-after lecturer and key opinion leader


7. Trevor Burke – A new entry to the Top 50 this year, but as the editorial director of Dental Update, Trevor is far from a new name in dentistry. His legacy is difficult to overstate, with a passion for understanding and sharing materials science in dentistry that has shaped the lives – not to mention the restorations – of thousands of dentists


6. Ben Atkins – Ben was making a success of ethical dentistry before it was fashionable, somehow creating a stable and prosperous business out of treating society’s most disadvantaged people under the NHS contract. Since selling those practices his star has risen further, giving him space to spread his clear-sighted approach to patient care even more widely as president of the Oral Health Foundation


5. Chris Barrow – Chris has been telling practice owners how it is for over 20 years, and he must be doing something right, as he still commands an audience of thousands who hang on every word of his regular blog. Love him or hate him, his insight has predicted trends, shaped the thinking of major dental businesses and helped plenty of practice owners thrive through the years, while his straight-talking approach and keen insight even earned him wider fame as part of the cast of Channel 4’s The Island


4. Simon Chard – It’s hard to believe that someone with a CV as impressive as Simon’s could have qualified just eight years ago – but the proof is there for all to see. As scientific director of the BACD, he is helping others achieve the same stunning clinical results that he documents in his own beautifully-photographed cases. But the list doesn’t stop there: as an ambassador of the Slow Dentistry movement and one of the minds behind the environmentally-friendly Pärla toothpaste tabs, Simon is proof that the future leadership of the profession is in safe, and inspired, hands


3. Sara Hurley – the outspoken chief dental officer for England enjoys another year in the upper echelons of the Top 50, even as the difficulties of steering the profession through the coronavirus have thrown a spotlight on her work more closely than ever. Pandemic notwithstanding, Sara’s continuing message of integration with healthcare and championing skill mix within the profession have signalled a change within dentistry to a more progressive, forward-facing outlook


2. Mick Armstrong – cometh the hour, cometh the man – and Mick’s leadership of the BDA seems to have found its natural outlet amidst the chaos of the coronavirus. A staunch champion of dentists’ rights throughout his term in office, his work to clarify the financial situation for NHS dentists as the coronavirus pandemic exploded across the globe (and into dental practices) has arguably been the highpoint of his time as BDA chair.
As lockdown tightened across the UK, his work secured peace of mind for many NHS practices, with votes mounting up in recognition


1. Milad Shadrooh – celebrating another year at the top of the charts is Milad Shadrooh – without doubt dentistry’s most successful crossover hit.
Milad and his famous eyebrows have won the hearts of hundreds of thousands of people, and they continue to do the same for his peers within the profession, going to show that a great tune and a sense of humour can still go far in these difficult times.
And why shouldn’t they? Milad brought his alter ego The Singing Dentist full circle in the last 12 months, taking a star turn as host of several major dental awards – including the Dentistry Awards – to rapturous applause from the audience. If there were any doubt left over how much the profession loves their homegrown star, let it be dispelled now.
But his serious side still prevails – the oral health message baked into his string of successful pop parodies remains as strong as ever. He is still a dentist, after all – the clue is in the name!
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