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Husband and wife dentistry duo bridge the gap

alice and nigel kirk

A husband and wife dentistry duo who met at university have hit the books together for a second time 12 years later to bring specialist skills to their York practice.

Nigel and Alice Kirk both enrolled onto pioneering postgraduate dental courses at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan), which will enable them to offer four different specialities of dentistry at Nigel’s practice.

Nigel, who has already gained a Masters in Clinical Restorative Cosmetic Dentistry from UCLan’s School of Postgraduate Medical and Dental Education, is now studying for his second master's degree in Aesthetic Dental Implantology at the University.

His wife Alice, is a sedation lead for the Salaried Dental Services across North Yorkshire as well as working in Nigel’s practice. She is currently undertaking an MSc in Oral Surgery at UCLan.

The couple who live on Bishopthorpe Road first met in 1999 at the University of Birmingham’s School of Dentistry where Alice was two years ahead of Nigel in her studies. They finally got together when Alice taught at the School and Nigel was in his final year and have lived in York since 2000.

Alice commented: “We met whilst training to begin our careers and now all these years later we’re studying together again. It means we’ll have a good range of services to offer to our patients and hopefully stand out as a practice.”

Nigel heads up his fully private dental practice in Castlegate and is a member of the joint dental faculties of the Royal College of Surgeons.

The 36 year-old said: “I undertook my first master's degree in restorative dentistry at UCLan and I liked the set-up of the courses, especially the flexibility of them, which allows me to fit the course into my daily working life.

“Very few people in the country have a master's degree in both restorative dentistry and dental implantology; two very closely integrated subjects. Consequently I think I will have much more to offer to both my patients and referring dental practitioners.”

Alice added: “The profession of dentistry has changed an enormous amount over the last few years. With much more emphasis in the media on the appearance of people’s teeth in programmes such as 10 Years Younger, patients expect more and as a dentist you must have the training to undertake these more complex procedures.

“Because of these changes we have to be able to show that we are committed to moving with the times and are continually developing and expanding our knowledge.”