Since the need is so high, finding jobs in the dental industry can be slightly easier to come by than other jobs. In fact, in many cases entry-level positions in the industry require little or no previous training. Many offices will offer a dental technician job training within the office. They are just seeking an individual with exceptional professionalism and people skills who they can train.
These entry-level positions can be a great way for an individual to earn some kind of income while obtaining further education on dental care. Typically, people view the internship as nonpaying jobs, when realistically money can be earned.
In some cases, the dentist may require that before hiring an individual for the dental technician job he/she would need schooling. This should not discourage the individual. There are trade schools that specialize in training an individual for a dental technician job or dental nurse job. Most of these can be successfully completed within a year.
Although there are some entry-level dental jobs, some may require special schooling or training. Obtaining a dental nurse job would be a prime example. When first starting there are really no schooling requirements, most offices will hire an individual as a trainee. Once hired, schooling will be necessary in order to further advance in the career.
Dental nurses are very important to the dentist. They are relied upon to assist the doctor in every aspect of the office. Patients go to the dentist for routine cleanings and a debridement, a further detailed cleaning of the gums. Typically, the dentist will require the dental nurse to handle these duties. Additionally the nurse is required to assist with setting up proper tools for the dentist, and then handle the sterilization of the tools following the procedure.
The average duties of the dental nurse include:
- Ensure the patient is comfortable, under the dentist’s care. Keep in mind that generally people do not look forward going to the dentist. It is up to the dental nurse to ensure his/her comfort
- Obtain previous dental records the patient may have. If it is his or her first visit to this dentist, it will be necessary to find previous records.
- Assist the dentist by handing the requested instrument and/or other materials and keep the patient’s mouth dry by utilizing a suction device or cotton during all procedures.
- Ensure that all instruments are clean and sterile prior to use.
- Prepare and set up all instrument trays.
- Prepare the materials that are used for impressions and restorations.
- Apply anesthetic to the gum or medications that prevent cavities.
- Remove sutures from time to time.
- Order general office supplies in addition to the dental supplies.
- Receive patients as they enter the office.
- Maintain patient records.
- Maintain office expenses.
- Accept payments from the patients.
- Set and confirm appointments with the patient.
Something to consider is that dentists require some dental nursing experience before becoming a dental hygienist. It is a great stepping-stone.
Other things that should be kept in consideration are that even though this position does not require any special schooling, it would be a good idea to have some general knowledge of science. High school students could prepare by taking additional science courses such as biology or medical science classes. Some high schools even offer off campus hands on training. Depending on the school, health care courses may be an option – like a vocational tech course. Due to the extensive knowledge required for any medical career the trend of offering medical courses prior to college has grown immensely.
As the population increases so will the need of dental professionals. It could be a highly rewarding experience to obtain an entry-level dental job. It is by the assistance of dental nurses and other dental staff that the beautiful smile before you is viewable.
If this is a desired position, continue to grow in the field. There are several courses available to assist strengthening the dental nurse position.