If it wasn’t for her incredibly approachable nature and friendly smile, one might be slightly intimidated by Ballito dentist Dr Rohini Bisaal. Apart from being a dentist with the Family Dental Care Group and being a strikingly beautiful model and dancer . . . she also drives a red 718 Porsche Cayman!
It’s hard to believe that someone as beautiful, confident and successful as Rohini grew up with a very low self-esteem after being bullied and teased at school. However, she believes that it was this experience that ultimately led to her choosing her career path and creating a life she is now very proud of.
Based at the Family Dental Care Group at the Active Care Medical Clinic at the Ballito Junction Mall, Rohini offers a range of services from basic dentistry to paediatric and specialist dentistry, as well as aesthetic dentistry. She will soon be offering other aesthetic services such as Botox and fillers.
Originally from Durban, Rohini matriculated from Durban Girls’ High School and went on to study dentistry at the University of the Western Cape. While at school, she was often teased about her ‘bunny teeth’, and ended up not wanting to smile in front of people. “My parents came to my rescue and got me braces when I was 13. That was a game-changer and I was incredibly fascinated by the entire process.”
It was inevitable, she says, that she would one day end up studying to become a dentist. “I guess becoming a dentist was a very personal decision as I knew first hand what it felt like not being able to smile confidently and seeing how my life was changed with orthodontics. I knew then that this was what I wanted to do – change people’s lives by spreading smiles.”
Aside from her professional career, Rohini has also seen success in the world of modelling and dancing. She was crowned first princess at the Miss India South Africa pageant while at university and modelled in various advertising campaigns, and also did middle-Eastern and ballroom dancing in various performances both locally and overseas.
“Dancing will always be a part of me. It is a language of the soul. It keeps me grounded and makes me feel alive at the same time. My goal for dancing is to one day learn the art of salsa! My modelling career began when I was in Grade 8. I graduated with Models International and then signed up with D&A Model Management in Cape Town during my third year of studies. This definitely contributed to my overall independence and growth as an individual.”
Rohini is also passionate about practising yoga and meditation. She says both keep her grounded, focused and healthy and allow her to connect with her inner self – especially when life gets a bit busy and haphazard. “I listen to motivational podcasts every morning while getting ready for work and feel this sets the tone for how I start my day.”
Probably the most interesting and unexpected of Rohini’s passions and hobbies is her car – a gorgeous bright red 718 Porsche Cayman. “I used to play Playstation when I was a kid, especially a game called ‘Need for Speed Most Wanted’. One day when I unlocked the Porsche Cayman, I immediately fell in love with it! I stuck a picture of a red Porsche on my vision board in 2013 and, fast-forward five years later to 2018, at the age of 23, I took ownership of my very own red 718 Porsche Cayman. I named her Pepper!”
“I don’t see her as just a materialistic possession, but rather a symbol of hard work, determination and perseverance. She serves as a reminder to me that anything is possible and this motivates me to work harder every day. This car was a true ‘dream come true’ for me.”
Asked what she loves most about the work she does Rohini says, “I love the fact that I can make another individual smile. It’s priceless when you hear patients tell you they are either out of pain, or they can smile again. Dentistry is a beautiful industry to be in because every single case is different and I am learning and developing every day as a clinician. There is always space to grow in the industry.”
The only challenge she has faced in her industry, Rohini says, is the fact that people are sometimes apprehensive when they find out she is a young, female dentist. “There is a misconception that older, male dentists are superior. Dentistry is a five-year degree, which includes both academic and practical work, and we are graded according to our ability. I look at it as a positive challenge though, to help young female dentists break the stigma and show the world that we are not less competent, but are equal to our male colleagues.”
Details: Dr Rohini Bisaal, Family Dental Care Group, Active Care Clinic, Ballito Junction Regional Mall, 032 586 1819, IG: rohinibasaal
Text: Leah Shone | Photographs: Chris Allan Photo
Shoot location: Elaleni Coastal Forest Estate
Hair: Carlton Hair Ballito