Dental assistants work with all sorts of patients — from those needing routine checkups to those undergoing more complex invasive procedures. Their work can be both challenging and satisfying when done right.
As part of your Dental Assistant resume, emphasize your understanding of dental procedures and terminology along with strong administrative abilities – these will set you apart from your competition and will make an impressionful first impression.
Patient care is at the core of dental assisting. This encompasses various clinical and administrative duties, ranging from providing oral health education to giving post-treatment instructions. Meeting both emotional and physical needs for patients takes both technical expertise and soft skills like communication and organization.
Education of patients about their treatment options and alternatives helps ensure informed consent and gives them control of their own dental health, which is especially essential for patients with special needs such as children or elderly seniors.
Dental assistants often serve as the first and last point of contact between a patient and their office, so their presence must be friendly and welcoming; validating patient concerns while making them feel at ease. This role can be highly rewarding while helping control workplace stress levels and build loyalty for the practice; great dental assistants take great pleasure in engaging their patients through interaction.
Many dental assistants work 35-40 hours each week alongside dentists and dental hygienists, and may also supplement their regular job with part time or temporary positions. Listing these experiences on a resume demonstrates an ability to handle multiple tasks at the same time while providing excellent customer service.
Dental assistants perform many administrative duties for dentists and oral healthcare practices, such as updating patient files with past oral procedures and other pertinent data. This information enables dentists to make more accurate diagnoses when treating new patients; while also protecting patient privacy and adhering to office protocols. Dental assistants may also be responsible for sanitizing tools, preventing infection spread in the practice, and upholding confidentiality rules; the ideal candidates for this job will have excellent pressure-handling and detail skills, knowing where all items can be quickly found when needed.
Many dental assistants take the next step in their career by transitioning into practice management roles, such as office manager, treatment coordinator, scheduling assistant or insurance and finance coordinator. Their existing organizational skills and familiarity with patient records make this transition seamless.
Organized physicians understand the value of staying organized to effectively manage patient flow and ensure everything runs smoothly, from sterilizing tools and inventory tracking, to maintaining files.
Dental assistants can also play an invaluable role in educating their patients on good oral health practices such as proper brushing and flossing techniques, making this an excellent opportunity to demonstrate both team collaboration experience as well as their caring approach towards patients.
Communication is of utmost importance for dental assistants, who must communicate effectively with patients, hygienists, dentists and office staff. Dental assistants also complete administrative tasks on computers like writing forms, interoffice memos and public relations items – thus good typing skills and basic computer knowledge are indispensable in this role.
Effective communication requires listening and understanding. A dental assistant must pay close attention to nonverbal cues such as silence or pauses, and be cognizant of how different cultures influence verbal exchanges.
Part of the communication process includes informing patients about their oral health and hygiene. Dental assistants must be able to gauge a patient’s understanding of educational materials so they can make adjustments accordingly, answering any queries from patients in one-on-one settings, and offering referrals if they cannot help directly; this is particularly essential if their client is functionally illiterate.