Published:  05:41 AM, 23 November 2019

How one Dhaka dentist is using social media to fight diseases

How one Dhaka dentist is using social media to fight diseases

We've all heard the saying "prevention is better than cure," and when it comes to our health, it is better to prevent than to find cures for diseases after they occur. Dhaka-based Dr. Fahreen Hannan, a dentist and the founder of Dhaka Cast, an online platform that provides health-related information, is one individual who subscribes to that way of thinking.

Dr. Fahreen uses social media to reach patients, provide medical services and to create awareness for healthy living especially for diabetes patients. She also share information and tips about health-related products and servicesas well as to publicize public talks with leading health professionals, including diabetologists.Her Facebook business page, Dhaka Cast It's all about Diabetes (https://www.facebook.com/dhakacast/), is helping to raise awareness about diabetes, including how people can prevent and control the disease.

Social media platforms such as Facebook are also helping professionals such as Dr. Fahreen to reach audiences they may not have previously had access to, particularly people in rural areas where levels of diabetes testing are low and monitoring of blood glucose among known diabetics is infrequent. "Diabetes is such a disease which invites many other diseases. Raising awareness is essential in this field," said Dr. Fahreen.

Some of the tips on her Dhaka Cast page seem simple, but can be incredibly effective to ward off diseases such as diabetes. "Start the day with a healthy breakfast," says one post. Another reads: "Avoid dairy products that are too high in fat". The page is also a way for Dr. Fahreen and her team of fellow doctors to respond to patient's queries, while Dr. Fahreen also focuses on her area of expertise: dentistry."As a dentist, I share about dental issues and hygiene tips for better oral health," said Dr. Farheen.

Besides this they have diverse health related services. People contract for medical advice and also can get medical products from the page. Their online store also sells diabetic food.  Dhaka Cast has recently started to provide caregiver and nursing services at patient's home and soon to introduce at home physiotherapy services.

Dr. Fahreen has been honored both in Bangladesh and abroad for her initiatives and received various awards. Last April, she was selected as the Community Builder of Grameenphone Accelerator Program. She has alsobeen selected for the Accelerating Asia Program to be held in Singapore in January 2020.

With more people turning to the internet to search for a diverse range of health-related subjects, she believes that social media platforms have the ability to transform lives and change habits.

 "No information can be spread so easily in any other platform except Facebook in Bangladesh. If Facebook wasn't here, I wouldn't be able to raise local awareness about diabetes so quickly and easily, and all my recent recognitions happened only because I had Facebook as a platform to start my journey" said Dr. Fahreen.

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