Dr Josine Ferlito

Dentistry, Pools and Family

I grew up in Sydney, the youngest child in a family of five. I have two older brothers, a musical father and an amazing cook of a mother. My greatest memories are of being with my family and listening to the greats, Shirley Bassey, Frank Sinatra, Elton John and my personal favourite, Billy Joel.

I remember wanting to be a dentist from a very early age; it wasn’t at all altruistic; in fact, it was the complete opposite. Our dentist at the time was a family friend who has a surgery attached to his house. I have no memories of checkups or cleans or even fillings, what I do remember vividly is that my brothers and I got to use the pool. This pool was terrific, it had a slide, and to my 6-year-old mind, it was the greatest thing in the world, his family was the only one we knew who had a pool. So naturally, it made sense, to obtain a pool, I would need to become a dentist.

So the next 20 years of my life were dedicated to this singular goal. Dentistry had become a post-grad degree by the time I reached uni, so I obtained a science degree while I worked as a dental nurse. I worked for some fantastic dentists, Dr Michael Piras in Burwood and Dr George Kadi in Balmain. Both dentists were an inspiration, they were more than happy to teach me, but most of all they both loved their work, and so I developed a love for it too.

After my Science Degree, I started Post Grad Dentistry at Sydney University; this is where I met my future husband, Danny. We married in 2008 and moved to Albury where we had a wonderful few years of extended honeymoon with a whole lot of dentistry thrown in. We came back to Sydney and started Smiles of Eastwood which we then moved to Ryde. The Smiles of Ryde practice is so lovely, especially because it has parking, which I have learnt is essential once you have kids.

We started a family in 2011, welcoming Christian, then Jamie and finally Ethan into our little family. Never did I understand what a juggling act, career and kids would be, but I wouldn’t change it for a second. As we have watched our children grow and the children of our patients, I am so grateful to be able to enjoy my family and my work.

After so many years of working, I still don’t have a pool. Instead, I have an immense love for my profession, and I use my brother’s pool. It works out much better because I don’t have to maintain it.