Dental Assistants are very versatile. T hey are well trained in a variety of areas to properly assist Dentists and Hygienists perform quality dental work on all individuals. Th e duties will depend on the state regulations, the type of dental facility, and how that particular facility has their operations set up. Oft en the smaller the dental facility, the more types of duties the Dental Assistant will be trained in.
Ty pic al Dental Assistant tasks include sterilizing instruments and setting up instrument trays. The pr oper cleansing and sterilizing of dental instruments is a detrimental part of providing quality service to all patients. Instrum ent trays are set up with the proper tools and equipment that can possibly be needed for a particular dental procedure. Dental A ssistants get these materials together and in the area where the procedure will take place. This help s things run smoothly and allows the Dentist or Hygienist to remain focused on the procedure. It elimina tes searching for each item as it is needed.
Dental As sis tants often remain with the dentist or Hygienist during the procedures. They are resp onsible for suction and for
handing the instruments to the other staff throughout the procedures. They are also there to offer instant assistance if an emergency arises during the procedure. In some dental facilities, the Dental Assistant will monitor the vital signs of all patients as well
as administer local anesthetics.
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Dental Assista nts often help to make patients feel comfortable before, during, and after their procedures. They can offer a k ing word, help adjust lighting and chair position, and provide the patient with follow up information to care for their procedures. Dental Assistants a re often asked to make phone calls and follow up on the recovery process for some patients after major procedures including root canals, bridges, and extractions.
It is common for Den tal Assistants to perform X-rays and other lab procedures including castings for caps and bridges. They often talk to pa tients about their medical history and any types of communicable diseases. They discuss proper ca re after procedures to ensure patients do all they can to allow their procedures to heal properly. They may even call in p rescriptions as a courtesy to patients.
Dental Assistants are tr ained in emergency procedures. While it is unlikely anyt hing will go wrong in the dental office, occasionally it does. Some individuals suffer fr om an allergic reaction to the anesthetic and require medical attention. Others may swallow somethin g and choke during a procedure. Other times a patient may st op breathing. Knowing CPR and properly moni toring vital signs are all valuable in a crisis situation in the medical facility.
As you can see, Dental Assista nts are often trained in a wide variety of processes and procedures. This will help ensure they keep busy as well as add variety to their daily routine in the workplace. Dental Assistants must learn qui ckly as well as pay attention to details. Their role is very important to t he overall functioning of the entire dental facility.
The duties of a Dental Assistant a re constantly changing depending on the needs of the patients and changes in technology. It is important that Dental Assista nts keep up on such changes. Often, their employer will require t seam to participate in training courses, seminars, and workshops to keep up to all the change and improve in all areas need to provide the best service.