Billion Healthy Mouths Club

Professor Isabel Martinez Lizan from Spain:
“The real challenge of my job is to show students a different approach to dentistry.”

Prevention equals health, health equals quality life.

Professor, researcher and dentist Dr. Isabel Martinez Lizan has devoted her life to studying and teaching about the prevention of oral diseases. Her relentless pursuit to positively influence future dentists into choosing an active prevention path, rather than the reactive one, is highlighted in this short interview. 

What routines do you find most critical for maintaining proper oral health?

Without a doubt, regular oral hygiene and healthy dietary habits. 

What does the word prevention mean to you?

For me, prevention means health, and that equals to the quality of one’s life. 

What is your ‘golden rule’ or advice that you tell your patients often?

Spend time on yourself and your health… It’s worth it!

Welcome to the Billion Healthy Mouths Club

Proper routines in prevention are the future of dentistry – that’s why we at Curaden launched the Billion Healthy Mouths Club – a community of dental professionals committed to the idea of having proper routines in prevention and a holistic approach to dentistry. Dr. Isabel Martinez Lizan is one of those dental professionals who shares these values, and we proudly present her experience and thoughts to other like-minded people from the field. Keep reading our Gently magazine to discover more interviews with forward-thinking professionals from around the world.

What’s the biggest challenge of your job?

The biggest challenge of my job is to actively work on showing future dentists a different approach to dentistry, which is focused on health rather than disease. That is much more important and it is more ethical. Preventing caries or any other disease from happening is less costly, less time-consuming, and healthier than repairing ill tissues, despite the fact that we are able to do that in an excellent way.

On top of this, as a dentist I feel a responsibility to show the community of future dentists the relevant relationship between oral health and systemic diseases. I find that also quite challenging. 

What’s the thing that you like about your job the most?

To prove to patients that prevention works. As a professor, one of the things I like most is to see students of dentistry enjoy providing oral health counselling to patients, who then return to our clinic very committed to their oral health. 

What’s the most important thing in terms of an oral care routine, from your point of view?

Regular brushing and cleaning the interdental spaces properly. 

What’s the biggest oral health myth that you fight against?

I’m surprised that, even nowadays, so many people think that their oral health problems are inherited and there’s nothing they can do to change it. And because of this, many people come to the dental office only in order to ‘repair their teeth’.  

Ever since she studied dentistry at the University of Barcelona, Dr. Isabel Martinez Lizan has devoted her professional career to the prevention of oral diseases. She continued studying oral public health at the University of the Basque Country (Spain) and pursued the Ph.D. programme with a focus on the community water fluoridation program. As a dentist, professor and researcher, Isabel Martinez Lizan became a board member in some of the most relevant European (ORCA-European Organisation for Caries Research) and Spanish (SESPO-Sociedad Española de Epidemiología y Salud Pública Oral) Scientific Societies. Later on, she was in charge of the implementation of the new curriculum in the Faculty of Dentistry at the University of Barcelona. Today, she is involved in research and teaches innovation of prevention and minimally invasive dentistry.