Private Dentistry Awards: breaking the glass ceiling

Chiggs Patel at the Private Dentistry Awards

Chiggs Patel talks diversity in dentistry, the benefits of applying to the Private Dentistry Awards, and how he felt when he won Young Dentist North West.

How does it feel to have won a Private Dentistry Award?

It’s a great honour to be recognised for my hard work and dedication at the Private Dentistry Awards. 

Especially when you consider the credentials of the judging panel, and the quality of the other candidates (including my younger brother!). They are representing some of the best private clinics in the country.

How did it feel when your name was announced?

It was a real surprise – I stood up and then quickly sat down thinking it was a mistake, until my family and colleagues shouted at me to go on the stage! 

I was overwhelmed with pride at what my family and I have achieved from our humble backgrounds. I’m really lucky that I work in an industry where diversity is embraced, and self-expression encouraged. 

This is something that many other industries are failing in, but I feel we are truly leading the way. Our parents have lived with glass ceilings and faced much discrimination throughout the years, and it fills them with great pride to see us living their greatest dreams.

What do you think have been the main benefits of entering the awards?

On a personal level, the networking has been helpful in getting my career in private dentistry started. It also showed me what can be achieved when you strive for clinical excellence. 

There are so many inspirational clinicians out there to learn from and emulate. From a marketing perspective, the accolade has certainly helped to bring in more clients wishing to learn about oral health and what can be done to improve their smiles.

Have you entered before?

Yes, I entered back in 2016. I wanted to enter again once I felt I’d earned my ‘stars and stripes’, learned from failure and grown.

What do you think the Private Dentistry Awards are doing for standards within the profession?

I think the Private Dentistry Awards are raising awareness of the standards we can achieve clinically and from a customer service perspective – the latter being something we don’t really get taught enough about when considering a dental business.

What advice would you give people who are thinking of entering the awards?

I would say enter, even if it’s just for a great party and the networking involved. Surround yourself with those doing remarkable things in dentistry, and it may just open up opportunities. 

Since embarking on this journey, I’ve helped a number of younger colleagues wishing to excel in private aesthetic dentistry via a structured private apprenticeship scheme, which has been life-changing for them.

What’s your favourite product of the last 12 months and why?

Venus Pearl by Kulzer – my best companion since day one. Beautiful and reliably strong.

Will you be entering the awards again?

Yes – next time for another category, though! 

It’s time to start thinking about compiling your entries for the Private Dentistry Awards 2023! Full details are available on 

The Private Dentistry Awards ceremony takes place on Friday 1 December at Grosvenor House in London.

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