The dental industry is one of the fastest growing industries in the country today. Because of this fast growth and popularity, it is also opening up many job opportunities as well. A dental assistant is one of those opportunities that anyone can work without having to go through all of the schooling that a dentist has to go through. Here is a brief article detailing the dental assistant and their roles in a dental office.
The primary job of a dental assistant is to help the dentist perform his procedures. This could be anything from helping the dentist with major dental work to arranging files and paperwork in the office. Whatever it is the dentist needs you to do to help with their day that is what you will have to do.
Primarily, these individuals can be expected to prep patients before they are seen by the dentist. As a dental assistant you will also likely have to make sure that all of the dental instruments are clean, sterile and in working condition. Then once the dentist is ready to perform a professional teeth cleaning, you will need to stand around and hand the dentist the proper instruments as he or she calls for them.
Another basic function that comes with this job is filing paper work and giving instructions to the patient before and after they are seen by the dentist. This includes checking the patient in and arranging a follow up visit or taking appointments as needed.
The also usually deal with sales associates and order dental equipment and supplies. This means ordering simple items that need to be stocked like toothbrushes, mouthwash, fluoride, and dental floss. It also requires keeping the more expensive instruments up to date and ordering things like water picks and electric brushes, drills and other high-tech instruments. Everything will have to first be approved by the dentist of course.
These are just a few of the basic functions that come with the job. There may be many more duties you will have to perform depending on what the dentist needs you to do.
In order to work for a dentist as their assistant, you will first need to get an accredited degree. This varies from state to state, but there are schools that offer associates degrees for people that want to work in this field. Then, because there is such a high demand for this job, you should get some experience working in a dental office as this will really help you get hired.